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A presentation by Gerrit Koepping. Employees and employers negotiate salaries and benefits individually This sometimes meant that employers could play.

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Presentation on theme: "A presentation by Gerrit Koepping. Employees and employers negotiate salaries and benefits individually This sometimes meant that employers could play."— Presentation transcript:

1 A presentation by Gerrit Koepping

2 Employees and employers negotiate salaries and benefits individually This sometimes meant that employers could play employees against each other (Oh, you want $10 an hour? Well, John will work for $9 an hour) Would also employ women or children to drive down labor costs Wages, hours, days off, job security, pensions, benefits were all less secure Labor costs/prices were lower

3 Workers join together to collectively negotiate their wages, hours, benefits, working conditions, etc... Once a union is established then a companys employees must join the union to work for the company Employees pay the union monthly dues

4 STRIKE!!! Workers stop working for the company and try to stop the company from producing its goods

5 Hard to do if workers have specific skills Picket lines – factory entrances are blocked by striking workers Publicity to try to pressure a company to concede to union demands Violence – sometimes unions would attack replacement workers (scabs) Sometimes companies would hire their own thugs to attack strikers – sometimes the government would help

6 Labor in the 1800s Post Civil-War Industrialization meant the skilled labor could be replaced with unskilled labor The Knights of St Crispin was the first nationwide labor movement The Knights were bootmakers and shoemakers who organized in the 1870s to oppose competition from machine-made products made by unskilled labor A successful (though violent) labor strike for railroad workers in 1885 encouraged other workers to unionize

7 First Labor Union to remain active for more than a few years Were tailors who formed a secret society in 1869, and grew to a nationwide organization in 1880s Grew to include all types of workers Proposed laws to cut workday to eight hours, and equal pay for men and women Mother Jones

8 Replaced the Knights of Labor in the 1880s as the leading union of its time Tried to organize skilled workers Advocated for improved wages and hours using strikes && boycotts

9 The Haymarket Riot Following the death of four strikers at police hands about 1,000 factory workers protest in Haymarket Square in Chicago in May 1886 Someone in the crowd throws a bomb killing 7 police and injuring 67 bystanders Police fire on crowd killing 10 and wounding 50 8 Radical strike leaders prosecuted, 4 executed Turns public sympathy against strikers

10 Homestead Strike Carnegie Steel Company reduced its wages- Violence between strikers and Pinkerton guards – strike fails when workers quit union Coeur dAlene Disputes between mine owners and miners (Coeur dAlene was a mining region) – twice federal troops are called in to break up the strikes

11 The Pullman Strike- Pullman sleeping train company has a model industrial village They strike when Pullman lowers wages and fires many workers American Railway Workers refuse to handle trains that have Pullman Cars US army disperses strikers, as requested by RR industry leaders – railway traffic comes to a halt in he Midwest Supreme Court upholds Presidents right to issue an injunction, an order to end a strike

12 Most unions didnt include women, members of minority groups, and unskilled workers (only 1 in every 33 workers was a member of a union) African Americans could only join separate, local unions Hostility towards immigrants Exclusion act of halted immigration of Chinese workers and gained wide support from American labor unions Obstacles to Unity

13 Stood for restricted immigration Reformers believed that farmers and workers should be freed from the exploitative practices of banks, railroads, and merchants. Convert the US to the silver standard – to cause inflation Largely a rural movement

14 Farmers and the populists Improved farming technology meant that farmers produced more and more food – driving down prices Individual farmers responded to falling prices by growing more food to cover the losses coming from falling prices To buy more land, to grow more food they borrowed money – Banks become the enemy To get that food to the urban markets they need the railroad – Railroads become the enemy

15 The Grange By 1875 about 1 million members Demanded regulation of railroad rates Creation of agriculture colleges Formed cooperatives to pool goods, sell to larger buyers, purchase seed and machinery in bulk, pooled credit

16 Populists political fate In 1892, gained 14 seats in Congress and two governorships By 1896 election the populists had faded especially when Democrats start demanding the coinage of silver – The Democratic Candidate William Jennings Bryan of Nebraska demands free silver Republican William McKinley wins the cities and the presidency with his warnings against radicalism 1898 – Gold discovered in Alaska

17 Populists and race, class Efforts to unite farmers under their economic interests ran into a problem in the South where whites feared empowering black farmers and sharecroppers Also hindering the populists was a shift in political power and population from rural, agricultural America to urban, industrialized America

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