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This is the grave of John L. Lewis. Born near Cleveland, Iowa in 1888, Lewis came from a largely lapsed Mormon family that he later claimed influenced his desire to fight for the poor. At the age of 17, he entered a coal mine near Lucas, Iowa. He was instantly attracted to unionism and was […]
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On June 22, 1922, a night and early morning of angry United Mine Workers of America members massacring strikebreakers and mine guards ended in Herrin, Illinois. Twenty-one people died, 19 of which were the strikebreakers and guards. This spasm of violence is a rare example of American labor history where workers killed more people than […]

Union Environmentalism

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In General
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On June 18, 2014
Let me recommend Trish Kahle’s Jacobin piece on the Miners for Democracy (1970s reformist United Mine Workers members) and the potential of energy workers embracing environmentalism. Brief excerpt: Ultimately, the group of miners arguing for an energy workers union federation — or even a new union to represent all energy workers — were unsuccessful in […]
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