2015.08.24 history gatling.gunAugust 24
The Gatling Gun Co.—manufacturers of an early machine gun—writes to B&O Railroad Co. President John W. Garrett during a strike, urging their product be purchased to deal with the "recent riotous disturbances around the country." Says the company: "Four or five men only are required to operate (a gun), and one Gatling ... can clear a street or block and keep it clear" - 1877

United Farm Workers Union begins lettuce strike - 1970

August 25
Birth of Allan Pinkerton, whose strike-breaking detectives ("Pinks") gave us the word "fink" - 1819

Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters founded at a meeting in New York City. A. Philip Randolph became the union's first organizer - 1925

August 262015.08.24 history 16tons
Fannie Sellins and Joseph Starzeleski are murdered by coal company guards on a picket line in Brackenridge, Pa. Sellins was a United Mine Workers of America organizer and Starzeleski was a miner - 1919
(Sixteen Tons carries the reader down into the dark and dangerous coal mines of the early 1900s, as Italian immigrant Antonio Vacca and his sons encounter cave-ins and fires deep below the earth’s surface.)

After three-quarters of the states had ratified the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, women win their long struggle for the vote - 1920

With America in the depths of the Great Depression, the Comptroller of the Currency announces a temporary halt on foreclosures of first mortgages - 1932

In what some may consider one of the many management decisions that was to help cripple the American auto industry over the following decades, Ford Motor Co. produces its first Edsel. Ford dropped the project two years later after losing approximately $350 million - 1957
2015.08.24 history womens.strike.equality
The Women’s Strike for Equality is staged in cities across the U.S., marking the 50th anniversary of the passage of the 19th amendment, under which women won the right to vote. A key focus of the strike—in fact, more accurately a series of marches and demonstrations—was equality in the workplace. An estimated 20,000 women participated, some carrying signs with the iconic slogan, “Don’t Iron While the Strike is Hot.” Another sign: “Hardhats for Soft Broads” - 1970

More than 1,300 bus drivers on Oahu, Hawaii, begin what is to become a 5-week strike - 2003

August 27
Some 14,000 Chicago teachers who have gone without pay for several months finally collect about $1,400 each - 1934

President Truman orders the U.S. Army to seize all the nation's railroads to prevent a general strike. The railroads were not returned to their owners until two years later - 1950

August 28
The March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom—the Martin Luther King Jr. "I Have A Dream" speech march—is held in Washington, D.C., with 250,000 participating. The AFL-CIO did not endorse the march, but several affiliated unions did – 19632015.08.24 history mlk.march
(Martin Luther King, Jr., and the March on Washington: Written for 5 to 8 year-olds, this is a very nice introduction to Martin Luther King, Jr., and the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, that watershed event in the fight for civil rights. It uses the March as a point of reference as it talks about segregation in America and the battle for equal rights.)

August 29
Sixty letter carriers from 18 states meet in a room above Schaefer's Saloon on Plankinton Avenue in Milwaukee. They unanimously adopt a resolution to form a National Association of Letter Carriers - 1889

Seventy-five workers die when the lower St. Lawrence River’s Quebec Bridge collapses while under construction. A flawed design was found to be the cause. Thirteen more workers were killed nine years later when the reconstructed bridge’s central span was being raised and fell into the river because of a problem with hoisting devices - 1907

Dancers at San Francisco’s Lusty Lady Club vote 57-15 to be represented by SEIU Local 790. Their first union contract, ratified eight months later, guaranteed work shifts, protection against arbitrary discipline and termination, automatic hourly wage increases, sick days, a grievance procedure, and removal of one-way mirrors from peep show booths - 1996

Northwest Airlines pilots, after years of concessions to help the airline, begin what is to become a 2-week strike for higher pay - 1998

Delegates to the Minnesota AFL-CIO convention approve the launching of workdayminnesota.org, now in its fourteenth year. It was the first web-based daily labor news service by a state labor federation - 2000

2015.08.24 history osha.cardAugust 30
Delegates from several East Coast cities meet in convention to form the National Trades' Union, uniting craft unions to oppose "the most unequal and unjustifiable distribution of the wealth of society in the hands of a few individuals." The union faded after a few years - 1834

President Franklin Roosevelt's Wealth Tax Act increases taxes on rich citizens and big business, lowers taxes for small businesses - 1935

OSHA publishes scaffold safety standard, designed to protect 2.3 million construction workers and prevent 50 deaths and 4,500 injuries annually - 1996