Here’s today’s labor history:
In 1899, New York City newsboys, many so poor that they were sleeping in the streets, begin a two-week strike. Several rallies drew more than 5,000 newsboys, complete with charismatic speeches by strike leader Kid Blink, who was blind in one eye. The boys had to pay publishers up front for the newspapers; they were successful in forcing the publishers to buy back unsold papers. The strike inspired the 1992 film Newsies, adapted into a Broadway musical in 2011.
On this date in 1934, two were killed, and 67 wounded in the Minneapolis truckers' strike, in what came to be called “Bloody Friday."
And in 1971, postal unions and the Postal Service signed the first labor contract in the history of the federal government.
Today’s labor quote is by newsboy Louis Ballatt, better-known as “Kid Blink,” who had a heavy Brooklyn accent:
"Friens and feller workers. This is a time which tries de hearts of men. Dis is de time when we'se got to stick together like glue.... We know wot we wants and we'll git it even if we is blind."