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Civil Rights and Labor History Consortium / University of Washington

Labor Events Yearbook: 1937

This is a database of campaigns, strikes, and labor related events as recorded in the Sunday News published by the Washington Commonwealth Federation during 1937. It was researched by Nathaniel Bade. Start by reading his labor highlights report. Below that is the database. Click the links to read the articles.

Highlights 1937 by Nathaniel Bade

1937 as seen through the Sunday News was a good year for demonstrating the power of labor, but a bad year for the unity of the movement. Unions won victories in several important campaigns, but the most important development of the year was the split between unions affiliated with the new Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO) and the older American Federation of Labor (AFL). Led by the International Longshoreman’s Association allied with the CIO, and the International Brotherhood of Teamsters with the AFL, the two associations warred over members and contracts, with the conflict escalating into violence in the lumber industry and other settings.  Other significant events include the successful end of the Newspaper Guild’s struggle for recognition, a strike by workers on the Works Progress Administration jobs, and the central role of cannery and farm workers in the jurisdictional fights.

  [read full report/close report]