Today in Labor History – February 23rd

19-year-old Irish immigrant Kate Mullany led members of the Collar Laundry Union, the first all-female union in the United States, in a successful strike in Troy, New York. The union asked for  increased wages and improved working conditions. Women working in commercial laundries spent 12 to 14 hours a day ironing and washing detachable collars […]

Today in Labor History – February 21st

Oregon passed the first legislation in the country to officially recognize the “workingman’s holiday” Labor Day. By 1894, 30 other states had adopted the holiday and on June of that year, Congress passed an act making the first Monday in September each year a federal holiday. – 1887 The Transportation-Communication Employees Union merged with the […]

Today in Labor History – February 20th

Responding to a 15 percent wage cut, women textile workers in Lowell, Massachusetts organized a “turn-out” (a strike), in protest. The action failed. Two years later they formed the Factory Girl’s Association in response to a rent hike in company boarding houses and the increase was rescinded. One worker’s diary recounts a “stirring speech” of […]