1910s

1917 Raids on the Socialist Party and the IWW

An article in the International Socialist Review from October 1917 about the federal raids on the Socialist Party and the Industrial Workers of the World the month before.

The IWW and the Socialist Party
[events of Sept. 5, 1917]

Published in International Socialist Review, vol. 17, no. 4 (Oct. 1917), pp. 205-209.

We are the heirs to the Tulsa Outrage

An article by a member of the restablished Tulsa IWW about the Tulsa Outrage, an incident in 1917 in which Wobblies were tarred and feathered by pro-war vigilantes.

On 9 November 1917, the day after the Bolsheviks seized power in Russia, 16 IWW men sat in a jail cell in Tulsa, Oklahoma. On paper, they were convicted of vagrancy. In reality, the charge was defiance of the capitalist class.

Mr Block comic

Mr. Block, who has no first name, was created November 7, 1912 by Ernest Riebe, a member of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW). Block appeared that day in the Spokane newspaper Industrial Worker, smoking a cigar and wearing a checkered suit with top hat. Subsequently, Mr. Block lost the fancy clothes but often kept a hat, ten sizes too small, perched on one corner of his wooden blockhead.

Helen Keller - Why I became an IWW

Hellen Keller in 1920

An Interview, written by Barbara Bindley, New York Tribune, January 15, 1916.

I asked that Miss Keller relate the steps by which she turned into the uncompromising radical she now faces the world as Helen Keller, not the sweet sentimentalist of women's magazine days.

"I was religious to start with" she began in enthusiastic acquienscence to my request. "I had thought blindness a misfortune."

The Voice of the People newspaper

First front page

Voice of the People was the new name of the Lumberjack the Wobbly Weekly covering New Orleans and the surrounding area.

In July 1913, timber industry leaders persuaded the Lumberjack’s printer in Alexandria to stop printing the paper. Publication resumed in New Orleans under a new title, the Voice of the People. The Lumberjack’s motto, “An Injury To One Is An Injury To All,” was retained, as was its four-page, three-column format.

The Lumberjack newspaper

Lumberjack Front page

An archive of a Wobbly Weekly Newspaper covering New Orleans, Orleans, Louisiana and focussing (at first) on the Lumberjacks of which it was named. It ran for the first half of 1913 before being revived as The Voice of the People.

The Lumberjack was founded in January 1913 in the midst of a protracted labor strike by the Brotherhood of Timber Workers (B.T.W.) in Merryville, Louisiana. Published by the Southern District of the National Industrial Union of Forest and Lumber Workers, the weekly paper was edited by Covington Hall (1871-1952), a member of the radical wing of the Socialist Party in New Orleans.

Direct Action journal

Direct Action was published by the Industrial Workers of the World Australian Administration.

It printed 135 issues between January 1914 and August 1917. Twelve more issues were published between May 1928 and May 1929 and another two in November 1930. A history of the paper can be found here.

Images from the 1917 Bisbee Deportation

Images from the 1917 Bisbee deportation, where an armed, anti-union 'Citizen's Protective League', in alliance with law enforcement, forced striking IWW miners out of state,

A martyr to his cause: the scenario of the first labor film in the United States

The background and script to A Martyr to His Cause, the first labor film, made in 1911 in defense of the McNamara brothers,who were accused of bombing the Los Angeles Times during a labor dispute.

“You understand we are radical”: the United Mine Workers of America, District 18 and The One Big Union, 1919-1920

The story of the United Mine Workers of America District 18 and their path into, and then later out of, the radical One Big Union.