Today in Labor History – April 22nd

labor history april 22

Hazel Dickens

The first known slave revolt in America occurred, just eight years after the first slaves were brought from Africa to the Americas. – 1526

One of the worst disasters in Virginia mining history occurred at the Red Jacket Coal Corporation mine near Grundy in Buchanan County. All 45 men in the mine at the time died when coal dust ignited, causing blasts that were felt two miles away.- 1938

The first U.S. atmospheric nuclear bomb test occurred at Yucca Flat, Nevada. The test was observed by U.S. marines who were used as human guinea pigs to test the effects of radiation on humans. – 1952

50,000 people marched in New York City against the wars in Vietnam and Southeast Asia. Another 30,000 marched in San Francisco.  – 1972

Songwriter, musician and activist Hazel Dickens dies at age 75. Among her songs: “They’ll Never Keep Us Down” and “Working Girl Blues.”  Cultural blogger John Pietaro: “Dickens didn’t just sing the anthems of labor, she lived them. Her place on many a picket line, staring down gunfire and goon squads, embedded her into the cause”. – 2011

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