Labor Events Yearbook: 1930

This is a database of campaigns, strikes, and labor related events as recorded in the Washington State Labor News during 1930. It was researched by Eunji Lee. Start by reading her labor highlights report. Below that is the database. Click the links to read the articles.

Highlights 1930 by Eunji Lee

The Great Depression was beginning to make itself felt in 1930. Articles in the Washington State Labor News show the labor movement mostly attempting to carry on as usual. The weekly newspaper provided no information about changes in union membership, but did report that the American Federation of Labor announced a significant increase in membership nationwide. The article claimed that 3 million people were members of unions. But it is clear that with unemployment mounting unions were under pressure as employers broke unions or refused to renew contracts.

But it is clear that with unemployment mounting unions were under pressure as employers broke unions or refused to renew contracts. Many articles in the WSLN had to do with letting union members know which houses not to patronize. Companies and organizations that were not union-friendly were added to the “do not patronize” list that was published in most issues. Other articles encouraged citizens to buy products from local union houses in order to raise the demand for the service or product, providing jobs for other local union members. For instance, near Christmas, Blind Sam, known as the “Kandy King,” [1] asked readers of the newspaper to purchase candy from the Queen Anne Candy Company, “the only all Seattle made and 100% unionized institution” to “give work and a Christmas to Seattle union men and women.”[2]

[read full report/ close report]