50 results for “Industrial Workers of the World”

Joe Hill's Funeral

In November 1915, thousands attended the Chicago funeral of songwriter Joe Hill, who was executed by firing squad in a Utah prison. According to his supporters in the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), Hill was falsely convicted of murder. The Swedish immigrant was best known for songs such as The Rebel Girl and The Preacher and the Slave, which gave new political lyrics to popular or traditional tunes.

Date
January 1916
Subjects
Immigration
Industrial Workers of the World
Labor unions
Places
Chicago (Ill.)
People
Hill, Joe
Report from M. Butler to E.M. Graham, May 11, 1937

The report of an undercover agent to the Pullman Company. Since the late 19th century, the Pullman Company employed African Americans as service workers on its sleeping cars. By the 1920s it was one of the largest industrial employers of African American workers, enjoying a reputation for paternalism. Beginning in the mid-1920s the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters (BSCP) under the leadership of A. Philip Randolph sought to unionize the porters and maids of the Pullman Company. Like other industrial employers, Pullman maintained an extensive network of informants who infiltrated unions and reported back to management.

Date
May 11, 1937
Subjects
African Americans
Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters
Unions
Working class
Places
Pullman (Chicago, Ill.)
E.F. Garry to Mr. Lane on Pullman Saving Plan

In the 1920s a growing number of large industrial employers developed welfare, recreation, and representation programs for their employees. This letter, between executives of the Pullman Company, explores the possibility of a company organized savings and investment plan for workers who built, repaired, and serviced railroad cars. Written shortly after the 1922 nationwide strike of railroad shop workers, the letter offers clues as to why employers favored such welfare programs.

Date
1922
Subjects
Industry
Labor
Places
Pullman (Chicago, Ill.)
The Season in Full Swing at the Dill Pickles

An advertisement for a week of events at Chicago's Dill Pickle Club suggests the eclectic mix of radicalism and ribaldry typical of the club. During the fall of 1930 Mae West's melodrama “Sex” played at Chicago's Garrick Theater promising audiences “55 people” on stage and “555 Thrills.” Earlier in the year, West became an unlikely icon of free speech when she prevailed over New York City prosecutors who accused her of producing obscene plays. Hypolite Havel was an anarchist intellectual and former associate of Emma Goldman. Ralph Chaplin was an editor and illustrator for the Industrial Workers of the World and the author of the labor anthem “Solidarity Forever.”

Date
1930
Subjects
Amusements
Dill Pickle Club
Gender and society
Places
Chicago (Ill.)
Main Gate to Works, Pullman

Workers leave the Pullman Palace Car Works, 1893. This picture appeared in a promotional booklet celebrating the paternalistic labor policies of George Pullman. A year later Pullman's workers were at the center of a national strike of rail workers that failed after federal troops intervened.

Date
1893
Subjects
Industry
Pullman Company
Railroads
Working class
Places
Pullman (Chicago, Ill.)
City of Industry, Hamilton, Ontario, 2007

A steel mill releases smoke and flames into the sky above Hamilton, Ontario. A working class neighborhood is visible in the foreground bordering the industrial plant. Since the late 19th century Hamilton has been one of Canada's major industrial centers and home to an activist labor movement. Despite a shift to service industries, it remains home to Canada's two largest steel mills.

Creator
Walsh, Chris P.
Date
2007
Subjects
Industry
Places
Canada
Ontario
Demonstrate for Adequate Cash Relief, Chicago, 1936

American workforce was unemployed. Many struggled alone, feeling isolated and disempowered. In Chicago and other large industrial cities, unemployed councils gave voice to the frustrations of the victims of the Depression. Often organized by radicals, the councils demanded increases in relief payments, fought evictions, and illegally turned on gas and electric supplies to poor families cut off by utility companies. The Chicago Commons settlement house worked with the Socialist Party affiliated Illinois Workers Alliance to protest a reduction in relief payments.

Creator
Illinois Workers Alliance
Date
1936
Subjects
Socialism
Working class
Places
Illinois
Anti-War Dance, 1918

Chicagoans organized many protests against American involvement in World War I, including this Anti-War Dance sponsored by the bohemian Dill Pickle Club. Critics of the war charged that large manufacturers were the most likely to profit from the war while workers were the most likely to die in the trenches. The war deeply divided Chicago's radicals. Some believed that it was necessary to remain loyal to the government once Congress declared war. Others urged active resistance to mobilization and the draft.

Date
1918
Subjects
Amusements
Dill Pickle Club
World War I
Places
Chicago (Ill.)
Types and Development of Man

An illustration from the 1904 World's Fair in St. Louis, Missouri, conveys the racialist thinking common at the time.

Creator
Buel, James W., 1849-1920
Date
1904
Subjects
World's Fair, St. Louis, 1904
Bridge building in Illinois

With the help of a steam-powered crane, workers place a massive steel beam into a railroad bridge. Steel and concrete bridges allowed for heavier trains and were more durable than the wood and stone bridges they replaced.

Creator
United States Army Corps of Engineers
Date
ca. 1890
Subjects
Bridges
Railroads
Workers
Places
Illinois