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sented for the most part "labour unions," i.e., local political clubs organised by and affiliated with the National Labor Union. The genuine labour representatives of reputation were Cameron, Siney, Trevellick, and Ben F. Sylvis- the brother of William H. Sylvis. The remaining dozen delegates were either new in the movement or such non-labour reformers as Horace H. Day, of New York, who represented the financial reform association of that city. This convention adopted the suggestion which Cummings of the Crispins had made in 1870, that of forming a double organisation, one industrial and one political, entirely distinct from each other, and holding two conventions, one political and one industrial. The special nominating convention, which had been set for October, 1871, was thus made the regular convention of the "political" National Labor Union and the date of its meeting was changed to February 21, 1872.
It met in Columbus on the appointed day. Among the delegates who had attended preceding conventions were Troup, now of Connecticut; Campbell, Cameron, and Hinchcliffe, of Illinois; Cameron, of Kansas; Chamberlain and Cummings, of Massachusetts; Trevellick and Field, of Michigan; Day, of New York; Davis, Fehrenbatch, Lucker, and Sheldon, of Ohio; Siney and J. C. Sylvis, of Pennsylvania. Other States represented were Arkansas, Iowa, Mississippi, Missouri, and New Jersey. Charges were made that control of the convention had been sought in order to influence the nominations of the Republican and Democratic parties, and that the full delegation from Pennsylvania was able to attend "through the courtesy of Thomas Scott," of the Pennsylvania Railroad Company. It was voted that the delegation from each State should cast the full electoral vote of each State, on the ground that Pennsylvania and Ohio had full delegations, while others had not had the facilities or means of travel. John Siney was elected temporary chairman, and Edwin M. Chamberlin, of Massachusetts, permanent chairThe platform of preceding years was adopted. Resolutions were offered by John T. Elliott of New York, favouring government ownership and the referendum, but were voted down. On the first formal ballot for nomination for president of the United States, the votes were: Judge David Davis, of Illinois,
88; Wendell Phillips, 52; Governor John W. Geary, of Pennsylvania, 45; Horace H. Day, of New York, 8; Governor J. Parker, of New Jersey, 7; George W. Julian, 7. On the third ballot Davis was nominated. The nominee for vice-president was Governor Parker. The platform of the National Labor Union was adopted as the platform of the National Labor and Reform party. Judge Davis gave a qualified acceptance, but, after the Democratic convention he declined, explaining his action as follows: "Having regarded that movement as the initiation of a policy and purpose to unite the various political elements in a compact opposition, I consented to the use of my name before the Cincinnati (Democratic) convention, where a distinguished citizen of New York (Horace Greeley) was nominated." A meeting of the executive committee at Columbus in August decided it was too late to renominate candidates.41 This unfortunate experiment practically ended the existence of the National Labor Union.42 The Industrial Congress, which was to be the economic branch of the National Labor Union, met at Cleveland, September 16, with only seven persons present, Trevellick, Cameron, Foran, J. C. Sylvis, Sheldon, Fay, and Manly.
42 A discussion in the columns of the Chicago Workingman's Advocate in February, 1873, throws light upon the relations between the national trade unions and the National Labor Union. H. J. Walls, a national officer of the iron molders' union, stated in an open letter to Cameron that the cause of the withdrawal of the national trade unions was the fact that the National Labor Union had become, after the Cincinnati convention, a political organisation. Cameron replied in the next issue that it had been a political organisation from the first Baltimore con
vention and that it had nevertheless had the warm adherence of men as prominent in their respective national trade unions as Sylvis and his opponent, Walls himself, of the molders, Kirby and Browning, of the bricklayers, Trevellick, of the ship carpenters and caulkers, Jessup, of the New York State Workingmen's Assembly, Siney, of the miners, and a score of other prominent trade union leaders. Cameron was undoubtedly right, because the National Labor Union, while composed, up to 1870, of industrial organisations, had never been an industrial organisation itself. It was legislative and political.
Industrial Congress and Industrial Brotherhood, 1873-1875. Fresh impulse towards national federation, 157. Joint call by the national unions, 157. Guarantee against politics, 158. The circular, 158. The Cleveland Congress, 159. Representation, 159. The trade union nature of the proceedings, 159. The constitution, 160. Attitude towards co-operation, 161. Attitude towards politics, 161. Effect of the financial panic on the new federation, 161. The Congress in Rochester, 161. Representation and the secret orders, 162. Debate on the constitution, 162. The minority recommendation of secret organisation, 163. Defeat of secrecy, 163. The Industrial Brotherhood, 163. The Preamble, 164. Robert Schilling, 164. The money question, 164. Arbitration, 165. Other demands, 165. Politics, 165. The Congress in Indianapolis, 166. The dropping out of the national trade unions, 166. The new constitution with organisation by States as its basis, 167. End of the Industrial Brotherhood, 167.
Greenback Party, 1874-1877. Patrons of Husbandry, 168. The antimonopoly political movement, 168. The Indianapolis convention, 168. Cleveland convention of farmers and mechanics, 169. 'Independent" or Greenback party, 169. Anti-monopoly convention, 169. National conference in Cincinnati, 169. Fusion with the Greenback party, 169. The nominating convention of 1876, 170. The representation, 170. Greenbackism a remedy against depression, 170. Peter Cooper's candidacy, 171. The campaign, 171. Results, 171.
Sovereigns of Industry. Co-operation, East and West, 171. William H. Earle, 172. Elimination of the middleman, 172. Constitution of the Sovereigns of Industry, 173. Membership, 1874-1877, 173. Activities, 174. Relation to trade unions, 174. Relation to the Industrial Congress, 175. Failure of the Sovereigns of Industry, 175.
National and Local Unions. Weak points in the trade unions of the sixties, 175. The depression, 175. Labour leaders and politics, 175. Westward migration, 176. Decrease in membership, 1873-1874, 176. The trades' assembly, 177. The cigar makers' strike against the tenement house system, 177. Strikes in the textile industry, 178. Amalgamated Association of Iron and Steel Workers, 179. The trade agreement, 179. Bituminous coal miners' organisation, 179. John Siney, 179. Mark Hanna, 180. The trade agreement, 180. The umpire's decision in 1874, under the trade agreement, 180. Failure of the agreement, 180.
The Molly Maguires. Trade unionism versus violence, 181. Ancient Order of Hibernians, 182. Influence over local politics, 183. Crimes of the Mollies, 183. James McParlan, 184. The "long strike," 184. The wrecking of the union, 185. Growth of the influence of the Mollies, 185. Arrest and trial of the Mollies, 185.
The Great Strikes of 1877. Reduction in wages of the railwaymen, 185. Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers, 185. The Trainmen's Union, 186. Robert H. Ammon, 186. The plan for a strike, 187. Failure, 187. Unorganised outbreak, 187. Martinsburg and Baltimore riots, 187. Pittsburgh riots, 188. State militia, 189. Federal troops, 190. Effect of the strikes on public opinion, 190. Effect on subsequent court decisions in labour cases, 191.
INDUSTRIAL CONGRESS AND INDUSTRIAL BROTHERHOOD, 1873-1875
THE disintegration of the National Labor Union did not end the effort to form a national federation. Shortly after the panic of 1873 a fresh attempt was made. It came from the national trade unions, which, having withdrawn from the National Labor Union at the time when it resorted to politics, now proceeded to evolve a national federation. This was the first appearance of an organisation similar in object and structure to the present American Federation of Labor. National trade unions were its basic units, and it was economic in character, but with legislative demands.
On May 3, 1873, a call appeared in the Workingman's Advocate, signed by William Saffin, president of the Iron Molders' International Union; by John Fehrenbatch, president of the Machinists' and Blacksmiths' International Union; by M. A. Foran, president of the Coopers' International Union; and by John Collins, secretary of the International Typographical Union. It called attention to the "rapid and alarming concentration of Capital, placed under the control of a few men," and to the fact that "almost the entire legislation of the country, both state and national, is in the interest of this concentrated capital, giving it almost imperial powers," a development which the authors declared was causing "a rapid decrease of our power as Trade Unions in comparison with that of Capital." Already the farmers of the West and Northwest," the call continued, "are driven to desperation by the bold, barefaced robbery of the fruits of their industry by legalised monopoly, and have organised powerful State organisations," but the trade unions still remain disunited. "Let not the failures of the past deter us from making renewed efforts, but profiting by our dear bought experience build up and perfect an organisation such as was contemplated in Baltimore in 1866." The
call further extended the invitation to "every Trade organisation in the United States, be it local, state, or (Inter) National, and every anti-monopoly, co-operative, or other association organised on purely protective principles, to send bona fide delegates to a Convention to be held in Cleveland, Ohio, on the 15th day of July, 1873." The signers pledged themselves "that the organisation, when consummated, shall not, so far as in our power to prevent, ever deteriorate into a political party, or become the tail to the kite of any political party, or a refuge for played out politicians, but shall to all intents and purposes remain a purely Industrial Association, having for its sole and only object the securing to the producer his full share of all he produces."
Another circular 1 addressed " To the Organized Workingmen of the United States" presented a list of grievances of labour as viewed by the signers of the original call. "We desire it distinctly understood that we have no Agrarian ideas; we neither believe or preach the doctrine that capital is robbery." All connection with the "Commune" was likewise disclaimed. While having no plan of action to dictate, the signers declared the following as the causes of their evil condition: The law, instead of fostering trade unions, treats them as conspiracies; while wages of labour are being reduced on the plea that the supply thereof far exceeds the demand, the country is slowly but surely being overrun by imported Chinamen, brought here in vessels subsidised by the general government; labour has not benefited from the improvement in machinery, but it has suffered from increased unemployment, because the "same number of hours must be worked to-day that were worked in a day thirty years ago"; the growth of huge monopolies has put restrictions upon the channels of trade with the result that the cost of living has risen; labour has no reliable information about its condition, such as would be furnished by a Federal bureau of statistics.
The other points which the circular mentioned briefly were that " co-operation has no legal recognition or assistance,' that the "country is without an apprentice system," and that consideration should be given to arbitration.
1 Chicago Workingman's Advocate, July 5, 1878.