War on the Docks:
Puget Sound’s Longshoremen in the 1934 Strike
Early waterfront unions attempted to combat the poor working conditions on the docks.On the West Coast, waterfront workers founded the Longshoremen’s Union of the Pacific in the early 1900s, followed later by the International Longshoremen’s Association.
In 1916, the ILA led a strike demanding control of the hiring process.But each ILA local along the coast attempted to negotiate its own contract.Employers used this opportunity to divide the coast’s longshoremen and defeat the strike.
Top: banner commemorating the founding of Tacoma’s ILA local.
Left: Charter for Port Gamble Lumber Handlers’ local of the Longshoremen’s Union of the Pacific.