Today in Labor History – May 8th

A. Philip Randolph

The American Federation of Teachers was founded. – 1916

Jerry Wurf, who served as president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) from 1964 to his death 1981, was born in New York City. The union grew from about 220,000 members to more than 1 million during his presidency. – 1919

A. Philip Randolph and Milton P. Webster founded the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters. The Brotherhood was the very first African-American labor union to sign a collective bargaining agreement with a major U.S. corporation. – 1925

About 200 construction workers in New York City attacked a crowd of Vietnam war protesters four days after the Kent State killings. More than 70 people were injured, including four police officers. Peter Brennan, head of the New York building trades, was honored at the Nixon White House two weeks later and was eventually named Secretary of Labor. – 1970

Some 12,000 Steelworker-represented workers at Goodyear Tire & Rubber won an 18-day strike for improved wages and job security. – 1997

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