Sunday, February 19, 2012

Today in Labor History—February 19, 2012

February 19, 1855 – Bread riots occurred in Liverpool. (From the Daily Bleed)

Bread and Roses, sung by Joan Baez
February 19, 1912—During the Bread & Roses Strike in Lawrence, MA, 200 police drew their clubs and went after 100 women picketers, knocking them to the ground and beating them. Big Bill Haywood from the IWW urged women not to picket. An Italian woman suggests responded: “All man, boy stay home, sleep. Only woman, girl on picket line tomorrow morning. Soldier & policeman no beat woman, girl. You see, I got big belly, she too got big belly. Policeman no beat us." However, the next morning, the women were beaten so badly that the Italian woman quoted above and another pregnant striker lost their babies & almost died. (From the Daily Bleed)

February 19, 1927 – A
General Strike occurred in Shanghai. (From the Daily Bleed)
Joseph Caruso, Joseph J. Ettor (center), and Arturo Giovannitti, in handcuffs, awaiting trial for Lawrence Strike, Wikipedia
 February 19, 1948 – Joe Ettor died on this date. Ettor was an IWW union organizer, who helped spearhead the Lawrence Bread & Roses Strike of 1912. "If the workers of the world want to win, all they have to do is recognize their own solidarity. They have nothing to do but fold their arms and the world will stop. The workers are more powerful with their hands in their pockets than all the property of the capitalists. As long as the workers keep their hands in their pockets, the capitalists cannot put theirs there. With passive resistance, with the workers absolutely refusing to move, lying absolutely silent, they are more powerful than all the weapons and instruments that the other side has for attack." (From the Daily Bleed)

February 19, 1972 – The longest ILWU strike  ended on this date. (From the Daily Bleed)

February 19, 1986 – The Farm Labor Organizing Committee signed an agreement with Campbell Soup, ending a seven-year-old boycott. (From the Daily Bleed)

February 19, 1990 - After a 10-month strike, rank-and-file miners at the Pittston Coal Co. ratified a new contract. Ninety-eight miners and a minister occupied a Pittston Coal plant in Carbo, Virginia, inaugurating the year-long strike. While a one month Soviet coal strike dominated the U.S. media, the year-long Pittston strike received almost no media coverage. (From Workday Minnesota and the Daily Bleed)

February 19, 1997 – 1,200 rallied in support of the striking musicians union, forcing the cancellation of the opening night Disney production of "Beauty & the Beast" at 5th Ave. Theater in Seattle, Washington. (From the Daily Bleed)

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