Thirty years ago, on September 17, 1989, ninety-eight members of the United Mine Workers of America – accompanied by a minister -- occupied the Pittston Coal Company's Moss 3 preparation plant in Carbon, Virginia, beginning a year-long strike.
The successful occupation and strike came at the end of a decade of brutal union-busting that had begun with Ronald Reagan firing 11,000 striking air traffic controllers.
Labor History Today’s Joe McCartin sat down earlier this week with AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka to discuss this historic strike.
Trumka, a third-generation coal miner, rose to lead the Mine Workers during the Pittston strike and went on to be elected president of the AFL-CIO on September 16, 2009.
Produced/edited by Chris Garlock for Labor History Today; engineered for WPFW by Mike Nasella.