On this day in labor history the year was 1964. That was the day that half of the labor force of France ended a strike that had ground the country to a halt. The strike started on December 10. It is estimated that nine million people participated in the work action.
On this day in labor history the year was 1886. That was the day that black farmers formed the Colored Farmers’ Alliance and Cooperative Union in Houston County, Texas. The Southern Farmers Alliance would not allow black members
On this day in Labor History the year was 1906. That was the day the workers at a General Electric plant in Schenectady, New York organized a sit-down strike. It is considered to be perhaps the first time the sit-down tactic was used in the United States.
On this day in Labor History the year was 1869. That was the day a new union, named the Noble and Holy Order of the Knights of Labor was founded. It started in Philadelphia as a secret society of tailors. But soon the Knights expanded to workers in other trades.
On this day in Labor History the year was 1993. That was the day that President Bill Clinton signed the North American Free Trade Agreement into law. The stated aim of NAFTA was to increase trade between the United States, Mexico and Canada.
On this day in Labor History the year was 1897. London became the world’s first city to license motorized taxicabs. More than a century later, cab service has seen many changes. Today taxi drivers are an important sector of workers trying to win union recognition.
On this day in Labor History the year was 1955. That was the day the American Federation of Labor and the Congress of Industrial Organizations merged to become the AFL-CIO. The American Federation of Labor was a confederation of unions can that trace its history all the way back to just after the Civil War, in 1866.
Would you go to jail for justice for working people? Over the years many in the labor movement have had to make that decision. Such was the case for Cesar Chavez. On this day in labor history the year was 1970. Chavez, the head of the United Farm Workers, was jailed for twenty days for refusing to end a lettuce boycott.
On this day in Labor History the year was 1916. That was the day that seven Australian members of the Industrial Workers of the World were sentenced to fifteen years in prison for their antiwar efforts during World War I. Other IWW members were sentenced to as many as five and ten years each.