The AFL - 2. Embraced only a small minority of all...

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The AFL a. American Federation of Labor (1886) i. Created by Samuel Gompers, a cigar maker who was born in London ii. He was elected president of the AFL every year except one from 1886-1924 iii. Consisted of a federation (or association) of self- governing national unions, each of which kept its independence. The AFL would unify its overall strategy and pool funds, enabling them to ride out prolonged strikes b. Gomper’s Beliefs i. Liked capitalism, but demanded a fairer share for labor ii. Sought a better working life (“pure and simple unionism”): 1. Better wages 2. Better hours 3. Better working conditions iii. Chief weapons were: 1. Walkout 2. Boycott c. Results of the AFL i. Attempted to speak for all workers, but it fell short 1. It was willing to let unskilled laborers, including women and blacks, fend for themselves
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Unformatted text preview: 2. Embraced only a small minority of all workingpeople 3% ii. Was non-political, but it did attempt to persuade members to reward friends and punish foes at the polls iii. From 1881-1900, they had over 23,000 strikes, involving over 6.5 million workers, and with a total loss to both employers and employees of $450 million iv. Strikers won half their strikes d. Attitudes Toward Labor Change i. Public was beginning to concede the right of workers to organize, bargain collectively, and to strike ii. Labor Day was made a legal holiday by an act of Congress in 1894 iii. Some industrialists saw the advantage of avoiding costly economic warfare by bargaining with the unions iv. Most employers continued to fight organized labor...
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This note was uploaded on 02/04/2012 for the course HISTORY 104 taught by Professor Reed during the Spring '11 term at Rutgers.

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