Today In Labor History June 29


Today in Labor History June 29, 1885: A streetcar strike began in Chicago after several workers were unfairly fired. The police chief wrote that he could see fifty stones in the air (aimed at scabs), but couldn’t tell where they were coming from. The workers’ won the strike.

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Today In Labor History June 29, 1898: Michael Schwab died from tuberculosis. The state had convicted him for the Haymarket bombing. The state pardoned and released from prison three months before his death. Schwab, who was born in Germany, was a bookbinder by trade. He emigrated to the U.S. in 1879 and wrote for the labor newspaper, “Arbeiter-Zeitung.” Some believe that his brother in-law, Rudolph Schnaubelt, was the person who actually threw the Haymarket bomb. However, they never tried Schnaubelt nor convicted him. But they did convict 8 other anarchists, none of whom were present at the bombing. 4 were hanged. And one committed suicide in prison.


June 29, 1919: Striking meat-workers in Townsville, Queensland, Australia clashed with police. The cops wounded nine people during the exchange of gunfire.

Today In Labor History June 29, 1936: The authorities deported Jesus Pallares, founder of the 8,000-member coal miners’ union, Liga Obrera, as an “undesirable alien.” They also deported one hundred other Chicano miners during the La Liga strike against the Gallup American Company in New Mexico. Additionally, they killed two strikers.


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Today In Labor History June 29, 1941: Stokely Carmichael (1941-1998), founder of the U.S. civil rights group the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) was born in Port of Spain, Trinidad. He was a key figure in the Black Power movement. The FBI attempted to destroy him through COINTELLPRO, and succeeded in convincing Huey Newton that he was a CIA agent. This, and the Panthers’ embracing of white activists into their movement, led him to distance himself from the Panthers. In 1968, he married the famous South African singer Miriam Makeba and moved to Africa.

Today In Labor History June 29, 1983: President Reagan said that one cause of the decline in public education was the effort to comply with court-ordered desegregation.

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