Tag: Industrial Workers of the World

Jun 12

Hellraisers Journal: Deported Union Miners Dumped at Bleak Alkali Sand Dunes Without Food or Water

You ought to be out raising hell. This is the fighting age. Put on your fighting clothes.

-Mother Jones

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Sunday June 12, 1904

Cripple Creek District, Colorado – Deported Miners Dumped Near Kansas Border

Cripple Creek Deportations June 1914

The miners who were herded down the street on Friday by militiamen and Citizens’ Alliance “deputies” and then loaded into railroad cars and deported from the Cripple Creek strike zone, were found near the Kansas border yesterday. The following report comes to us from today’s San Francisco Call:

EXILED MINERS, HUNGRY AND WEARY,

CAMP ON THE COLORADO BORDER

———-

Deported Men Are Taken to the Kansas Line by Troops.

———-

Left on a Bleak Prairie Without Food or Water Supply.

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SYRACUSE, Kansas, June 11.-The deported Colorado miners camped at Holly to-night, just across the Colorado line. They were notified to-night that a special train would be sent to take them all to Denver.

HOLLY, Colo., June 11. – With a parting volley of rifle bullets, fired over their heads by the militia and deputies to, warn them to “hike” eastward as fast as their legs could carry them and never again set foot on Colorado soil, ninety-one union miners from the Cripple Creek district were unloaded from a special Santa Fe train on the prairie this morning, one half mile from the Colorado-Kansas State line, and left to shift for themselves. The exiles were disembarked in haste and without ceremony. The guards and deputies were tired out and in ill humor from their long, tedious trip from the Teller County gold camp and were in no mood to extend any special courtesies or kindness to their unfortunate charges.

“Hurry up there, you fellows,” cried Lieutenant Cole, when the train stopped in the midst of the alkali sand dunes that dot the prairie in the vicinity of the eastern part of Powers County near the Kansas line. “We haven’t got any time to waste out here.”

WITHOUT FOOD OR WATER.

And no time was wasted. The special, which consisted of an engine, a combination baggage car and smoker and two day coaches, had no sooner come to a standstill than the car doors were unlocked and thrown open and the order given by Lieutenant Cole for the exiles to leave the train.

“Step lively, you fellows, step lively,” admonished Deputy Benton, who was in command of the civil forces of the expedition, and in less time than it takes to tell it the three cars were emptied of their passengers and the train was started on its way back to La Junta.

The men were dumped out on the cheerless prairie without food or water, for the soldiers and deputies, in their haste to get home, had forgotten to unload the small stock of commissary supplies the train carried when it left Victor yesterday afternoon.

SPIRIT OF MEN BREAKS

The exiles were a cheerless lot, indeed. Without even a light and miles from the nearest habitation, they huddled together in groups on either side of’ the Santa Fe track and discussed their plight. Warned to move eastward, on pain of being rearrested  and severely handled, and notified by the Kansas authorities that they would not be allowed to seek refuge in that State, the spirit of the men broke. Many of them walked  back westward on the railroad to Holly, the Salvation Army colony in Colorado, where the charitable inhabitants provided breakfast for them. Some of them later started to walk to Lamar, Colo.

Sheriff Jack Brady and forty deputies of Hamilton County were at the State line to prevent the deported men entering Kansas.

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CLAIMS TO HAVE MURDERERS.

———-

Bell Declares Independence Dynamiters Are In Bullpen.

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CRIPPLE CREEK, Colo., June 11.-General Sherman M. Bell to-day made the following statement for publication:

“I have indisputable evidence in my possession which will lead to the conviction of  union men for the murder of non-union miners who were killed in the Independence explosion. We have between thirty-five and forty men in the bullpen who will swing for this crime. We are only waiting to capture three or four men before we tell what our evidence Is.”

SOURCE

The San Francisco Call.

(San Francisco California)

-of June 12, 1904

Ahttp://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85066387/1904-06-12/ed-1/seq-22

Image

Miners Being Deported from Cripple Creek District

http://www.rebelgraphics.org/w…

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Jun 11

Hellraisers Journal: Gen. Bell Promises “One Deportation After Another” from Cripple Creek District

You ought to be out raising hell. This is the fighting age. Put on your fighting clothes.

-Mother Jones

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Saturday June 11, 1904

From The Topeka Daily Capital: Mother Jones Continues Heading East

“MOTHER” JONES WAS HERE

———-

Is One of the Staff of President John Mitchel
l

“Mother” Jones, who has been prominently identified with the Colorado miners’ strike and is on the immediate staff of John Mitchell of the United Mine workers, was in Topeka for a short time yesterday afternoon. She called upon the local machinists and made a short talk at their meting. She left for the East last night.

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Cripple Creek Deportations June 1914

More from the Cripple Creek Strike zone, a report from the Daily News-Democrat of Huntington, Indiana:

UNION MINERS ARE BANISHED

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WORK OF DEPORTATION FROM CRIPPLE CREEK BEGINS.

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TRAIN LOAD IS TAKEN AWAY

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Men will Probably be Taken to Kansas State Line-

Will Not Be Permitted to Land In Colorado Cities.

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Colorado Springs, Col., June 11-Acting under the orders of Adjt. Gen. Sherman Bell, of the state national guard, a special train was made up shortly after noon Friday in the Short Line yards at Victor for the deportation of 76 union miners. The train was composed of a combination baggage car and two day coaches. Almost immediately the work of loading the men began. They were marched to the train between heavy lines of military and deputies. A crowd of fully 1,000 people had collected to see the men placed on board. Among the spectators were wives and sisters, fathers and mothers of the deported men, and the scenes were very affecting.

Mayor Harris of this city, had been apprised of the decision to deport the men, and immediately took steps to see that none of them landed in Colorado Springs. Under his instructions a large force of officers and deputy sheriffs met the special train at 6:10 p. m. for that purpose. No attempt was made, however, to unload the men here, arrangements having previously been made to send them to Kansas state line, over the Santa Fe, because of protests made against taking them to Pueblo or Denver and leaving them there.

Kansans Indignant.

Syracuse, Kan., June 11.-Sheriff Brady of this county received a telegram from Sheriff Barr, of La Junta, Col., stating that a special train, carrying 140 deported miners from Colorado, would reach Coolidge and unload the miners in Kansas. Citizens of this county are indignant at this proceeding of the Colorado authorities, and an appeal has been made to Gov. Bailey to prevent Colorado from dumping her alleged undesirable citizens into Kansas.

Will Soon Be Rid of Agitators.

Cripple Creek, Col., June 11.-The woman’s auxiliary of the miners’ union has been forbidden by the military authorities to hold meetings.

“Within 48 hours this district will be rid of all agitators and other objectionable men.” said Gen. Bell, Friday. “One deportation after another will be made until none of the men who have terrorized the district so long will be left here”

Apparently by “men who have terrorized the district so long” Gen. Bell means striking union miners, and not the members of the Citizens’ Alliance who have been rampaging through the Cripple Creek Strike zone these past several days, destroying union property, trashing the union relief stores, and rounding up, beating, and threatening union miners and local officials who are deemed too sympathetic to the union cause. Without any proof whatsoever, the Western Federation of Miners is blamed for the explosion at the Independence Station on June 6th, and this has provided Gen. Bell, the militia, and the Citizens’ Alliance with the excuse they needed for this final assault on union organization in the Cripple Creek District.

The wives and children of the deported miners are now left behind to manage the best they can. The union relief stores on which they depend for food and other necessities of life have all been destroyed.

SOURCE

The Topeka Daily Capital

(Topeka, Kansas)

-of June 11, 1904

http://www.newspapers.com/imag…

The Cripple Creek Strike

-by Emma F Langdon

(Part I, 1st pub 1904)

NY, 1969

http://www.rebelgraphics.org/w…

See also:

Hellraisers+Cripple creek independence explosion

http://www.dailykos.com/search…

Image

Cripple Creek Deportations of June 1914

http://www.rebelgraphics.org/w…

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Jun 10

Hellraisers Journal: Trial of Joe Hill, IWW Singer & Songwriter, to Begin Today in Salt Lake City

You ought to be out raising hell. This is the fighting age. Put on your fighting clothes.

-Mother Jones

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Friday June 10, 1904

From the Kansas City Star: Mother Jones Heads East to Speak in Kansas City on Sunday

Mother Jones, Not Smiling

“Mother” Jones to Speak at a Picnic

Mary G. [sic] Jones, known as “Mother” Jones, will speak at Budd park Sunday afternoon at 4 o’clock. “Mother” Jones once lived in Kansas City and had a dressmaking shop, but in recent years has devoted her attention to Socialism and has been active in big strikes as a crusader. She will talk on the miners’ strike in the Cripple Creek district. There will be a picnic in connection with the meeting Sunday afternoon.

SOURCE

Kansas City Star

(Kansas City, Missouri)

-of June 10, 1904

Image

Mother Jones

http://www.britannica.com/EBch…

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Apr 21

Anti-Capitalist Meetup: Elizabeth Gurley Flynn and the Paterson Silk Strike by JayRaye

Elizabeth Gurley Flynn with Pat Quinlan, Carlo Tresca,

Adolph Lessig, and Big Bill Haywood

Paterson, New Jersey 1913



Elizabeth Gurley Flynn Arrives

On January 27, 1913 at the Doherty Silk Mill in Paterson, New Jersey, a workers committee requested a meeting with management. They wanted an end to the hated four-loom system which had doubled their work load with no increase in pay, and had caused the lay-offs of many of their fellow workers. When four members of that committee were fired, 800 silk workers, almost the entire work force, walked off the job spontaneously. They were without union organization to back them up. Being mostly foreign-born, non-English-speaking, unskilled workers, the AFL’s United Textile Workers did not want them.

But, in fact, there was another textile union in Paterson at that time: the IWW’s National Industrial Union of Textile Workers, Local 152 which local organizers, Ewald Koettgen and Adolph Lessig had established over several years of organizing. It was there, with this stalwart band of 100 Wobblies, that the strikers found a union willing to back up their strike. As it became clear that Doherty would not bargain with the strikers, Local 152 request help from IWW headquarters in Chicago.

On February 25, 1913, national IWW organizers, Pat Quinland, Carlos Tresca, and Elizabeth Gurley Flynn arrived to speak at a mass meeting. All three were arrested that night at the meeting. Strikers followed them to the jail and held a rally outside the jail, singing and shouting for their release. Women shouted, “When the strike is won, Gurley Flynn will be the boss!”

By the time Big Bill Haywood arrived, later that week, the strike had spread to silk mills across Paterson. 300 mills were shut down, and 25,000 silk workers were on strike. Big Bill advised the strikers: “fold your arms or put your hands in your pocket and let the manufacturers do the worrying.”

Oct 05

Occupy Wall Street 10.05.11

Oct 02

Occupy Wall Street 10.01.11

Jan 10

Unskilled workers and the unemployed: organise, or die on your feet slowly

Original article, by Hamish McLaren, via Socialist Appeal (UK):

2008 makes for a sad story, and in 2009, the working class will begin really paying for it. Some of the worst to be affected will be young unskilled workers; cleaners, shop-workers and caterers, like myself. Minimum wage workers at the best of times, we have, during the period of boom (which apparently was the last 10 years, although no one told us) eked out an existence, hovering from one place to the next for as long as moral holds out. Most I have worked with were young, often migrants, demoralised but unorganised and so usually without contracts of employment and subject to very poor working conditions.

May 26

U. Utah Phillips, RIP

cross posted from The Dream Antilles

Photobucket

“The Golden Voice of the Great Southwest” sings no more. Bruce “U. Utah” Phillips who, tongue firmly in cheek, billed himself that way, died peacefully in his sleep at his home in Nevada City, CA, May 23. He was 73.

Phillips was one of the deans of American folk music, a crucial link to the working class movement and history of western North America, and a cheerfully subversive social critic.

A proud, card-carrying Wobbly, Bruce made the songs and stories of the American West his own. As indeed they were. When he returned home from the Korean War, Phillips was broke in purse, body and spirit, riding the rails, until he landed at Joe Hill House in Salt Lake City, a shelter run by anarchist Ammon Hennacy of the Catholic Workers movement. Hennacy’s Marxism made sense of Phillip’s experience, and from it grew the knowledge and imagination Phillips subsequently put on stage.

Starting in the late 1960s, “U. Utah Phillips, The Golden Voice of the Great Southwest” sang the old, radical songs of the Little Red Song Book, and told the old organizers’ stories, working class yarns, rants and tall tales. He performed them with the skill and panache of Hal Holbrook doing Mark Twain – and thereby rejuvenated them. At hundreds of folk festivals and thousands of concerts, through a dozen recordings, he passed the lore on to two generations of new listeners, including young musicians like Ani De Franco.

source

When the the U.S. government finally released Joe Hill’s ashes, it was to Phillips that they gave them.

In his own words:

“Listen,” Phillips wrote in 1995, when first forced to cancel his extensive touring schedule, “for 25 years now, I have been part of a family which has given me a living – not a killing, but a living – a trade without bosses, in which I could own what I do, make all of the creative decisions, be free to say and sing whatever I chose to… Front porch, kitchen, back yard, drunk and sober, young and old, coast-to-coast folk music, a world in which I discovered that I don’t need power, wealth, or fame. I need friends. And that’s what I found and still find.”

“To hell with the mainstream,” Bruce concluded. “It’s polluted. What purifies the mainstream? The little tributaries up in the wilderness where the pure water flows. Better to be lost in the tributaries known to a few, than mired in the mainstream, consumed with self-love and the absurdity of greed. Please. Don’t give our world up. It needs to grow, yes – but subtly, out, through, under, quietly, like water eroding stone, subversive, alive, happy.”

In his own way:

He will be sorely missed.

Jan 22

Wobblies Strike Starbucks: Let’s Help Them!

Photobucket

IWW Demonstraters at NYC Starbucks (NY TimesPhoto)

The NY Times has the story:

The dramatic battles of the American labor movement were often fought in hazardous settings like the coal fields of Kentucky or the textile mills of Massachusetts.

/snip

And so it was that a crowd of about 50 people wrapped in scarves and bandannas against the cold gathered Monday morning outside a Starbucks at the corner of Fifth Avenue and East 33rd Street.

As their breath steamed the air, they chanted and sang. They carried long banners bearing the logo of the Industrial Workers of the World, a union founded in 1905 that has been trying to organize Starbucks workers since 2004.

Red and black anarchist flags waved in the wind, and one woman held aloft a placard depicting a pouncing black cat toppling what appeared to be a venti latte cup emblazoned with a dollar sign.

Typical New York Times.  The labor struggle is supposed to be stuck in the 19th century and resemble Matewan or Hazard or Lawrence.  Give me a break.   This is 2008 and it’s time to organize and unionize the global latte retailer.  And don’t remind me, please, that the Wobblies have been trying to organize Starbucks in NYC since 2004 and haven’t succeeded yet.  Please.  Enough is enough.  It’s time.

Folks, can we help the Wobblies organize Starbucks?  Of course we can.  You’re smart.  You drink coffee.  You probably use their bathrooms and their hot spots.  And you know it’s the right thing to do to help a union organize this industry.  Let’s put our heads together and find ways to help.  Put your ideas in the comments.

Of course, one of the things we might do immediately is stop swilling Starbucks in solidarity until they recognize this union.  There are still plenty of non-globalized caffeine emporiums (emporia?) in Gotham and elsewhere in the world where we can download caffeine.  These coffee purveyors have resisted the uniformity and standardized high priced Starbucks invasion.  Instead of Starbucks we can go instead coffee places that are fair trade, organic, locally owned, non Global.  Wouldn’t that be better?  Wouldn’t we feel better about that?  Wouldn’t we be able to snear at Starbucks consumers for being tools of oppression? Scabs? And so not hip?

I’m sure there are other things we can do.  And folks like me, who are on a de facto Starbucks boycott already and have been for some time, probably need to do something to make our feelings felt.  That’s what the comments are for: ideas to support this strike.

Organize Starbucks Already!  Basta Ya!

Updated (5:24 pm ET): I put this up at orange.  Some of the comments are astonishingly anti union.  This is a surprise and a disappointment to me.  To me, it’s an article of faith and reason that organized workers are in a much better position than unorganized workers.  I thought that was beyond debate, but apparently, it’s not.  Even on allegedly progressive/democratic blogs.  For shame.