Sociologist Alex Wood on the history of the relationship between bosses and workers and how that’s playing out in the age of COVID-19. On Labor History in 2: The Wreck of The Old ‘97.
Last week’s show: Escape on the Pearl; Black Labor Week
29 strike leaders are charged with treason – plotting "to incite insurrection, rebellion & war against the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania" – for daring to strike the Carnegie Steel Co. in Homestead, Pa. Jurors refuse to convict them - 1892
Railroad shopmen in 28 cities strike the Illinois Central Railroad and the Harriman lines for an 8 hour day, improved conditions and union recognition, but railroad officials obtain sweeping injunctions against them and rely on police and armed guards to protect strikebreakers - 1915
Black farmers meet in Elaine, Ark. to establish the Progressive Farmers and Householders Union to fight for better pay and higher cotton prices. They are shot at by a group of whites, and return the fire. News of the confrontation spread and a riot ensued, leaving at least 100, perhaps several hundred blacks dead and 67 indicted for inciting violence - 1919
- David Prosten