Monday, October 17, 2011

Today in Labor History—October 17

October 17, 1796 – Canada passed its Antislavery Act. (From the Daily Bleed)
Rockefeller as an Industrial Emperor, Puck magazine, 1901
 October 17, 1877 – John D. Rockefeller cut a contract with Pennsylvania Railroad, giving his Standard Oil Company a rebate on all freight carried by the line. The arrangement allowed him to monopolize virtually all oil production & transportation in the US. (From the Daily Bleed)

October 17, 1905 – Czar Nicholas II, faced with rising peasant uprisings and a General Strike in the cities, signed the Manifesto of October 17, promising civil liberties. The peasants and workers continued to riot. (From the Daily Bleed)

October 17, 1922 – Unemployed workers marched from Glasgow to London. (From the Daily Bleed)

October 17, 1939 – Warren Billings, labor activist, and falsely imprisoned for the San Francisco Preparedness Day bombing, was finally released from Folsom Prison. (From the Daily Bleed)

October 17, 1950 – The "Salt of the Earth" zinc mine strike began in Silver City, New Mexico. The strike lasted for 14-months and inspired the film “Salt of the Earth,” which was blacklisted. (From the Daily Bleed)
(See the remaining snippets from the film “Salt of the Earth” here)

October 17, 1961 – Police massacred between 200 and 300 Algerians protesting against police oppression and the curfew imposed against their community in Paris. Police searched the Algerian ghettos for FLN members, indiscriminately killing dozens of innocent Algerians before turning their guns on a large group of protesters gathered near the Seine River. The next day, the police released an official death toll of three dead and 67 wounded, a figure disputed by witnesses who observe bodies littering the area and floating in the Seine. (From the Daily Bleed)

October 17, 1977 – Nationwide wildcat hospital strikes occurred throughout Italy in protest of a sell-out settlement signed by the unions. Workers set out their own demands and battled police until the army was called in. (From the Daily Bleed)

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