Today in Labor History November 13th

Karen Silkwood

Over 20,000 workers participated in the funeral march for the Haymarket anarchists framed for throwing the Haymarket bomb. – 1887

259 miners died in the underground Cherry Mine fire in Cherry, Illinois. As a result of the disaster, Illinois established stricter safety regulations and in 1911, the basis for the state’s Workers Compensation Act was passed. – 1909

20,000 attend funeral march for the Haymarket Martyrs, 259 miners die in underground fire, Western Federation of Miners strike crushed by massive government intervention, Karen Silkwood was killed and more. Click To Tweet

A Western Federation of Miners strike was crushed by massive government intervention and the militia in Butte, Montana. The miners were striking for better pay and safer working conditions. The WFM was a “radical” organization co-founded by Butte Union miners and played a key role in the founding of the IWW. -1914

The Holland Tunnel opened, running under the Hudson River for 1.6 miles and connecting the island of Manhattan in New York City with Jersey City, New Jersey. Thirteen workers died over its seven-year-long construction. – 1927

GM workers’ post-war strike for higher wages closed 96 plants. – 1945

Members of the International Typographical Union, on strike against the Green Bay (Wisconsin) Press-Gazette over technology changes, created the Green Bay Daily News (later the News-Chronicle) as a money-maker for the strikers and to support their cause. Surviving until 1976, it was seen as the longest-running strike paper in newspaper history.  The Gannett chain ultimately bought the paper, only to fold it in 2005. – 1972

Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers Union activist Karen Silkwood was killed in a suspicious car crash. She was driving to a meeting with a New York Times investigative reporter. She was bringing them documents proving the company she worked for, Kerr-McGee Nuclear Corporation, had falsified quality control record of nuclear fuel rods. – 1974

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