Today in Labor History August 17th

Hormel Strike

Women strikers broke through police lines and demolished a New York garment factory that tried to open in defiance of a strike. Garment workers were toiling as many as 15 hours per day for as little as 50 cents. They tossed sewing machines out the windows and smashed furniture. The industry-wide strike had begun in June and quickly spread, with 60,000 striking up and down the east coast. – 1910

Women strikers demolish garment factory, Wobblies get prison for resisting the war, UFCW workers start an unsuccessful 10-month strike at Hormel.Click To Tweet

95 Wobblies (members of the IWWIndustrial Workers of the World) were sent to prison for up to 20 years for resisting the war. – 1918

The Bakery & Confectionery Workers International Union of America merged with the Tobacco Workers International Union to become Bakery, Confectionery & Tobacco Workers. – 1978

Members of the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) in Austin, Minnesota, went on strike against Hormel, makers of SPAM. They ignored the advice of their national union and struck anyway. Workers continued to strike even after the company tried to reopen the plant with replacement workers, including some union members who crossed the picket lines. After ten months the strike ended, with no gains for union members. – 1985

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