Today in Labor History – August 24th

Labor History August 24th

The Mechanics Gazette, believed to be the first U.S. labor newspaper, was published in Philadelphia, the outgrowth of a strike by carpenters demanding a shorter, 10-hour day. The strike lost but labor journalism blossomed: within five years there were 68 labor newspapers across the country, many of them dailies. – 1827

The Gatling Gun Company, manufacturers of an early machine gun, wrote to B&O Railroad Company President John W. Garrett during a strike, urging that their product be purchased to deal with the “recent riotous disturbances around the country”. Says the company: “Four or five men only are required to operate (a gun), and one Gatling … can clear a street or block and keep it clear”. – 1877

The National Association of Letter Carriers formed. – 1889

The United Farm Workers Union began a lettuce strike. Sometimes called the “Salad Bowl Strike”, it was a series of strikes, mass pickets, boycotts and secondary boycotts which led to the largest farm worker strike in U.S. History. The strike was led by the United Farm Workers against the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. The Salad Bowl strike was in part a jurisdictional strike, because many of the actions taken during the event were not strikes. The strike led directly to the passage of the California Agricultural Labor Relation Act of 1975. – 1970

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