Timber Workers and Pacific Northwest History
No industry has been more important to the economy, culture, and politics of the Pacific Northwest than timber and forest products. Native peoples learned early how to thrive in the world of trees that covered most of the region. White settlers, starting in the 1850s, turned timber into the export product that would lead the region's economy for nearly a century.
This section explores the history of timber workers and their unions. It is a work in progress with new materials to be added soon. Steven Beda is section coordinator.
Our most detailed reports focus on the 1935 timber strike that led to the organization of the International Woodworkers of America (IWA). We also have reports on three earlier organizations: The International Union of Timber Workers (1911-1922); Shingle Weavers of America (1901-1921) and the Loyal Legion of Loggers and Lumbermen. The reports are linked below.
|Timber Strike of 1935
by Steven Beda
An introduction and detailed timeline of the strike
|International Shingle Weavers of America 1901-1921
By Phil Emerson
|The International Union of Timberworkers 1911-1923
By Chris Canterbury
|Loyal Legion of Loggers and Lumbermen
By Erik Mickelson
|Timeline and News Coverage: Timber Strike of 1935|
by Steven Beda
.More than 400 news articles about the strike from Washington State newspaper. All digitized and fully readable.
The Timber Workers' Strike of 1935: Anti-Labor Bias in The Seattle Star,
by Kristin Ebeling
As the timber workers' 1935 strike became more and more controversial, The Seattle Star became less supportive in their coverage of the issue, leading workers' to develop their own newspaper.
|Harold Pritchett: Communism & the International Woodworkers of America
by Timothy Kilgren
Canadian-born Harold Pritchett helped organize the International Woodworkers of America in the mid 1930s and became the first president of the huge timberworkers union. But his Communist Party affiliation made him a target and in 1940, US immigration authorities banned him and he was forced to resign the Presidency. This paper explores the life of a Communist union leader.
|Timber Worker (1936-1942) newspaper report
by Geraldine Carroll and Michael Moe
Born in the midst of the 1935 timber strike, the Timber Worker was the union newspaper of the International Woodworkers of America, based in Aberdeen, WA.
|International Woodworker (1942-1987) newspaper report
by Bryan Schnase
The International Woodworker succeeded The Timber Worker as the official publication of International Woodworkers of America. The paper lasted for 45 years, providing union news, current events, editorials, safety reports, and accident reports (a major issue in the logging and timber industry).