Always on Strike: Frank Little and the Western Wobblies by Arnold Stead

By Arnold Stead

“[The governor] requested me what we'd do if the firms didn't yield to our calls for. I advised him we might name everyman out of the mines. Then he stated that if we did, that he might position them below Federal keep an eye on. I laughed and advised him we'd name out each employee within the nation, agriculture employees, lumbermen, munitions employees, miners, mechanics and all periods of operating males. He stated ‘Why, guy, you wouldn’t do this. This kingdom is at war.’ I acknowledged ‘ Governor, I don’t care what nation your state is combating. i'm battling for the unity of labor!”
—From the speech for which Frank Little was once murdered in Butte, Montana

Frank Little is taken into account by way of a few to be the best organizer produced by way of the U.S. hard work stream, and but valuable little has been written in regards to the well-known commercial staff of the realm (IWW) agitator. Little was once a key chief of the country’s first unfastened speech fights, geared up a couple of mass moves, and was once thought of the sort of possibility to company pursuits that he used to be lynched via corporation thugs for decry makes an attempt at strike breaking. Police and govt officers not just became a blind eye to his homicide, they later used his phrases and activities to justify a crusade to scapegoat and persecute different participants of the IWW.

Always on Strike chronicles and significantly engages with Little’s exploits in hopes of revealing a brand new new release of radicals to his existence, legacy and politics.

Featuring conceal paintings from a portrait of Frank Little through Keith Seidel, keithseidel.com

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Additional resources for Always on Strike: Frank Little and the Western Wobblies

Sample text

If Nigel Sellars is correct, and by the first decade of the twentieth century the “Wild West” no longer stood outside and apart from an industrial order dedicated to an ever-increasing Always on Strike text pages 7_all pages 10/21/14 5:48 PM Page 39 the western wobblies 39 mechanization and standardization, the demise of the western Wobbly with or without a world war was inevitable. Individualism and factionalism did not prevent the IWW, east and west alike, from standing firmly together on two basic points.

Appealed to them because it made no political demands upon them, because it charged low initial fees and dues, because it allowed seasonal workers to transfer from one constituent union to another without red tape or new fees. ” Historian Arnon Gutfeld believes Tyler’s portrait of the western Wobbly is far more dependent on myth than fact, but however we classify the latter’s comments they offer us insights well worth our consideration. Tyler writes: “Zealous, individualistic, and free from ordinary social constraints, Wobblies acted with humor or fanaticism, from idealistic motives or from malice, but always with a raggedy dash, they were activists, not theorists.

The officers’ contract stated that they were to work eight-hour shifts, but ten-hour workdays were the norm. When Police Chief Shaw heard about the hobo agitator’s advice, he was outraged. ” He reacted officially by immediately revoking the IWW’s permit to speak on the street. The action seriously hindered the growth of Local 66. Even though Little came to trial and was acquitted, his advice to the police may well have been seen by eastern Wobbly organizers, and perhaps some westerners too, as unnecessarily provoking authorities to the detriment of the union.

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