Today in Labor History – December 11th

A small group of black farmers organized the Colored Farmers’ National Alliance and Cooperative Union in Houston County, Texas. They had been barred from membership in the all-white Southern Farmers’ Alliance. Through intensive organizing, along with merging with another black farmers group, the renamed Colored Alliance in 1891 claimed a membership of 1.2 million. – 1886

Colored Farmers’ National Alliance and Cooperative Union formed in Texas. At its height, claiming 1.2 million members Click To Tweet

An Illinois State mine inspector approved coal dust removal techniques at the New Orient mine in West Frankfurt, Illinois. Ten days later the mine exploded, killing 119 workers, because of coal dust accumulations. – 1951

The U.S Department of Labor announced that the nation’s unemployment rate had dropped to 3.3 percent, the lowest mark in 15 years. – 1968

Forty thousand workers went on general strike in London, Ontario, a city with a population of 300,000, protesting cuts in social services. – 1995

Michigan became the 24th state to adopt right-to-work legislation, prohibiting union contracts that require all employees to pay union dues. The Republican-dominated state Senate introduced two measures by surprise, one covering private workers, the other covering public workers, five days earlier and immediately voted their passage; the Republican House approved them five days later (the fastest it legally could) and the Republican governor immediately signed both bills. – 2012

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