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Topic: Steel Workers Organizing Committee

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In the News (Sun 22 Jul 18)

  Iron- and Steelworkers
The National Committee for Organizing Iron and Steel Workers, chaired by Chicago Federation of Labor president John Fitzpatrick, began an organizing drive in Chicago during World War I. This push culminated in an unsuccessful nationwide steel strike in 1919.
Workers at Wisconsin Steel were among the first in the industry to belong to an employee representation plan (or ERP), which critics derisively referred to as a company union.
Most of the iron and steel plants operating in Chicago at the turn of the century were small producers of specialty steel, not the basic steel producers of old that helped build the railroads, buildings, and automobiles of a bygone era.
www.encyclopedia.chicagohistory.org /pages/654.html   (737 words)

 Harry Frankel: What the Steel Convention Revealed (1952)   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-10)
When, in 1919, the Herculean effort of the steel workers to organize themselves was defeated, primarily through the weaknesses of the craft union divisions imposed upon the workers by AFL bureaucrats, steel unionism fell to a low point.
In sum, it can be said that while most of the steel strikes over a 50 year period were defeated, the industry as a whole succumbed to the general power of the CIO drive of the late Thirties rather than to the direct offensive of the steel workers.
The striking picture presented by the steel union, and made graphic at its conventions, is that of an enormous mass of powerfully organized and militant steel workers on the one side, and Murray on the other, with very little in between.
www.marxists.org /archive/braverman/1952/01/steel.htm   (4745 words)

 Congress of Industrial Organizations - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Dies Committee determined in 1938 that 280 salaried CIO organizers, were members of the CPUSA.
The Mine Workers led by Lewis, with a strong pro-Soviet presence, opposed Roosevelt’s reelection in 1940, left the CIO in 1942.
The CIO’s major organizing drive of this era, Operation Dixie, aimed at the textile workers of the South, was a complete failure, due both to the social and political backwardness of the region and the CIO’s reluctance to confront Jim Crow.
en.wikipedia.org /wiki/Congress_of_Industrial_Organizations   (4351 words)

 Rose/Duquesne and the Rise of Steel Unionism. Chapter 6   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-10)
SWOC immediately heralded the victory in Steel Labor: "Blocked in its efforts to cut wages at its Duquesne plant, U.S. Steel Corp. is paying out $12,000 in back wages." The article stressed that highly skilled and highly paid rollers, assistant rollers, and heaters had their tonnage rates restored.
Still, U.S. Steel, pushed by ERP militants in its various facilities, had moved to a general policy of accepting seniority as a determinant for layoff but only if physical fitness, ability, and family status (marital status and number of dependents) of the workers were similar.
SWOC president Philip Murray was still in the final process of firing the last of the Communist organizers whom he hired in 1936-37.
www.press.uillinois.edu /epub/books/rose/ch6.html   (15335 words)

 Fred Gaboury - Little Steel strike
By the time SWOC launched its drive to organize the steel industry Bittner was running the show in Illinois and Cohen, then 28 years old, was a member of the Communist Party leadership in Chicago.
Republic Steel's Tom Girdler was the lead dog in the employer's sleigh team that not only provoked the strike but made plans to drown it in blood in a holy war to prevent "the Communists" from taking over.
Committee investigators found that Republic was the largest buyer of tear and sickening gas in the country.
www.pww.org /archives97/97-05-29-2.html   (2210 words)

 Rose/Duquesne and the Rise of Steel Unionism. Chapter 5   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-10)
SWOC built on the pioneering work of the Fort Dukane Lodge, which had broken down racial barriers, enrolled a majority of the mill's fl workers in the union, and elevated fls to leadership positions.
Salopek was Croatian, an hourly wage worker, and a Fort Dukane activist; Maloy was Irish, a tonnage worker, and an ERP representative.
SWOC both formalized this coalition and further attempted to break down the deep divisions within the mill by appointing a mill organizing committee in early 1937 composed of both ERP and Fort Dukane activists.
www.press.uillinois.edu /epub/books/rose/ch5.html   (15054 words)

The Civil Authorities of Massillon, the deputized Republic Steel foremen and the other gunmen participating in the brutal and wholesale shooting are guilty of the premeditated execution of a preconceived plan to march on strike headquarters and peaceful pickets to fill them with lead and tear gas.
From July 10th to the 18th SWOC lodge officers, grievance committeemen and about fifty steel workers' wives and representatives of women's auxiliaries took Mt. Davis Camp over with the common purpose of building a stronger union.
Getting together with their fellow workers from other mills, form other communities, deriving stimulation from each other and having fun in work --all this in a camp atmosphere-- was a welcome change from the regular routine of life in the mill community.
www.library.pitt.edu /labor_legacy/RuttenbergII.htm   (1650 words)

 USW: Early History
A massive organizing drive was launched in conjunction with the Amalgamated Association of Iron, Steel and Tin Workers, and it met with almost immediate success, surviving many desperate efforts of giant steel companies to thwart unionization of their industry.
At a convention in Cleveland, Ohio SWOC and the Amalgamated were disbanded and the United Steelworkers was established as a constitutional body on May 22, 1942.
While the union was winning new gains for its members in the basic steel, aluminum, can and fabricating industries, it was also organizing workers in nonferrous metals, and growing into the largest single union in Canada.
www.uswa.org /uswa/program/content/217.php   (746 words)

 Massacre at Republic Steel
Under the AFL, union workers in the steel industry would be required to join their respective craft organizations, and these different unions would then negotiate separately with management.
The craft approach had failed previously in the steel industry, and the workers were anxious to organize under the CIO with its industry-wide approach.
SWOC had just won a short strike against another steel company, Jones and Lauglin, and the union leaders believed that they had the strength to close down the three companies.
www.kentlaw.edu /ilhs/republic.htm   (3060 words)

 East Side :: Memorial Day Massacre
The SWOC was attempting to organize the steel workers into an industrial union.
The workers were striking against Republic Steel, part of the group of steel companies known as "Little Steel", who did not want to grant them union recognition.
The workers met at sam's Club on 112th and Green Bay Avenue and decided to picket in front of the Republic steel main gate.
www.neiu.edu /~reseller/esstmemdaymass.html   (230 words)

 1892 Homestead Steel Strike
Nearly all the hired guns were wounded and humiliated in a gauntlet organized by women, children and townspeople.
This event was the culmination of failed contract bargaining between the Amalgamated Association of Iron and Steel Workers led by Hugh O’Donnell and Homestead Burgess John McLuckie, and Carnegie Steel led by Henry Clay Frick while Andrew Carnegie vacationed at his castle in Scotland.
In 1937, Committee of Industrial Organizations’ president John L. Lewis and U.S. Steel president Myron Taylor signed an agreement recognizing the Steel Workers Organizing Committee as the workers’ legal representative.
home.earthlink.net /~homestead1892/BoH/1892history.html   (267 words)

 Links - U.S. Steel Photograph Collection
Organization devoted to maintaining and restoring the integrity and quality of the natural environment of the Indiana Dunes region
Gary Chamber of Commerce Records - articles of incorporation, bylaws, correspondence, minutes, annual and committee reports, resolutions, printed material, blueprints, maps, and photos, relating to the chamber's efforts to attract new industry to the city, committee actions, public activities, housing, transportation, the steel industry, and Gary public schools.
John Oglesby Papers - correspondence, scrapbooks, artifacts, and photos, relating to the activities of Steel Workers Organizing Committee in Gary's sheet and tin mills in the late 1930s.
www.dlib.indiana.edu /collections/steel/context/links.html   (973 words)

 Archives Service Center - Finding Aids Collection   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-10)
Ruttenberg served as an investigator for the U.S. Senate Special Committee Investigating the Munitions Industry and was assigned to Federal Laboratories, a Pittsburgh-based company which provided munitions to various steel companies as well as to both warring factions in Cuba.
Ruttenberg was research director for Steel Workers Organizing Committee (SWOC) and retained the position after SWOC became the United Steel Worker Association (USWA) in 1942.
As a labor leader, Ruttenberg fought for a guaranteed minimum annual wage for union workers and tying steelworker's wages to increased productivitiy in mills.
www.library.pitt.edu /guides/archives/finding-aids/ue994.htm   (879 words)

 Nick Dispatch
You can hear glasses clinking together over the loud voices of workers recounting who was running the furnace or how liquid metal burned one of their co-workers.
The AFL contacts your mill and several other steel and iron mills throughout the country requesting a conference between management and the workers.
For the first time, workers in the steel industry had the legal right to unionize.
www.ustrek.org /odyssey/semester2/020701/020701nicksteel.html   (1040 words)

 USW: USW Mergers
The USW itself is the product of a merger in 1936 between the Amalgamated Association of Iron, Steel and Tin Workers, founded in 1876, and the Steel Workers Organizing Committee.
District 50 was formed as an autonomous unit of the United Mine Workers in 1936.
The Aluminum Workers International Union, the United Brick and Clay Workers, and the United Glass and Ceramics Workers of North America had merged over the years to strengthen their bargaining position against their employers and to provide quality service to their members.
www.usw.org /usw/program/content/543.php   (565 words)

 "We Are Americans!": The Homestead Workers Issue a Declaration of Independence in 1936
He argues that it was “flexible enough to express both the social democratic and ethnic communalist visions that inspired political activism among the nationÌs workers during the Great Depression.
As in other communities, this working-class Americanism infused the organizing campaign of the Steel Workers Organizing Committee (SWOC) in Homestead, Pennsylvania in the summer of 1936.
Four thousand steelworkers endorsed a declaration of their ”inalienable rights to organize into a great industrial union, banded together with all our fellow steel workers." It was surely not an accident that they worded that declaration in conscious imitation of the Declaration of Independence.
historymatters.gmu.edu /d/133   (642 words)

 People's Weekly World - The 1937 Memorial Day Massacre: A community remembers
On Memorial Day 1937, hundreds of steelworkers and supporters, led by the Steel Workers Organizing Committee, attempted a peaceful picket of Republic Steel in Chicago.
The mighty Republic Steel works (later LTV) is now down to a handful of workers from a spin-off operation of this once great South Chicago mill.
The union and thousands of Republic workers and their families were the backbone of this community.
www.pww.org /index.php/article/articleprint/3958   (522 words)

 Guide to the United States. National War Labor Board files, 1913-1946 [bulk 1942-1945].
The "Little Steel Companies Case" involved a wage dispute case between the Steel Workers Organizing Committee (forerunner of the United Steelworkers of America) and various steel enterprises.
The Little Steel Formula, which became the anti-inflationary wage adjustment criterion adopted by the War Labor Board, was derived through this case.
Consist of documents of the U.S. National War Labor Board pertaining to the labor dispute settlement case of the United States Steel Corporation vs. United Steelworkers of America (1943) on the issue of wage adjustment in excess of the "Little Steel Formula".
rmc.library.cornell.edu /EAD/htmldocs/KCL05298.html   (1473 words)

 UMWA Calendar   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-10)
U.S. Steel signs a 1st contract with the UMWA-backed Steel Workers Organizing Committee, later the United Steelworkers of America.
Former UMWA Secretary-Treasurer and U.S. Rep. William B. Wilson is appointed the U.S.'s 1st secretary of labor by Pres.
4 workers killed as protestors march on Ford Rouge Plant near Detroit in search of jobs during the great depression.
www.umwa.org /cgi/putamonth.pl?MONTH=032004   (176 words)

 Memorial Day Massacre of 1937   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-10)
Ten demonstrators were killed by police bullets during the "Little Steel Strike" of 1937.
When several smaller steelmakers, including Republic Steel, refused to follow the lead of U.S. Steel (Big Steel) by signing a union contract, a strike was called by the Steel Workers Organizing Committee (SWOC) of the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO).
As a show of support, hundreds of SWOC sympathizers from all around Chicago gathered on Memorial Day at Sam's Place, where the SWOC had its strike headquarters.
www.kentlaw.edu /ilhs/memorial.htm   (268 words)

 "The Man . . . Died on My Lap": One Women Recalls the Memorial Day Massacre of 1937
When members of the Steel Workers Organizing Committee (SWOC) decided to strike the “Little Steel”companies in May 1937, they could hardly have expected it to result in a massacre.
Lupe Marshall, a housewife and volunteer social worker in South Chicago was among those beaten.
She gave this testimony to the U.S. Senate Committee on Education and Labor, known informally as the La Follette Committee for its chair, Senator Robert La Follette, and charged with investigating the incident.
historymatters.gmu.edu /d/138   (2265 words)

Committee for Industrial Organization (CIO) formed inside the American Federation of Labor
Rubber Workers' begin the nation's first major sit-down strike at the Firestone tire plant in
Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO) is founded with John L. Lewis as president
members.tripod.com /Norrit1/afl-cio/1930.htm   (274 words)

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