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United States Labor History

Selected Primary Sources

Unionism & Testimonies

Adolph Strasser on "Pure and Simple Unionism" (1884)
Testimony of Cigar Makers' International Union President Adolph Strasser Before the U.S. Senate Committee on Education and Labor (1883).

Albert Parsons on Anarchism (1887)

Albert Parsons, Challenge to the Free Market

Andrew Carnegie, 1835-1919

Archives of the Cigar Makers' International Union

"Commit No Rash Act": Albert Parsons' Last Words to His Wife (1886)

The Communist Manifesto
Engels, Friedrich, 1820-1895, Marx, Karl, 1818-1883

"The corporate reconstruction of American capitalism, 1890-1916 : the market, the law, and politics," by Martin J. Sklar, order via inter-library loan from CCSU through Consuls, call number HC110 C3 S58 1988

The Emma Goldmen Papers
Emma Goldman (1869–1940) stands as a major figure in the history of American radicalism and feminism.

Essays and Analysis for a History of the Industrial Workers of the World Documents (IWW)

The Eugene Victor Debs Collection

Eugene V. Debs Internet Archive
One of the greatest and most articulate advocates of workers' power to have ever lived.

The Frederick Douglass Papers at the Library of Congress

“I am sorry not to be hung”
Oscar Neebe and His Statement on Haymarket (1886)

The Gospel According to Carnegie
Andrew Carnegie's 1889 essay, "Wealth," argued for a broad social and cultural role for fellow industrialists. It later became famous under the name, "The Gospel of Wealth." Click here to hear the speech.

The Labor Press Project
Labor and Radical Newspapers in the Pacific Northwest

Minutes of the Executive Council of the American Federation of Labor

National Women's Trade Union League of America founded, 1903

People's Party Platform. Adopted at St. Louis , July 24, 18 96.

Populist Party Platform (1892)

The Triangle Shirt Fire

"In 1911, 146 workers, most of them young women, were killed in the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire leading to a public call for laws to protect workers. As a result, by 1920 the ILGWU [International Ladies Garment Workers Union] was one of the most powerful unions in the organized labor movement."--Excerpt from Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site

Re-Assessing Tom Scott, the 'Railroad Prince'
A Paper for the Mid-America Conference on History September 16 1995

The Samuel Gompers Papers

Southern New England Telephone Company: The First Fifty Years, 1878-1928

Testimony of Samuel Gompers (1883)

Testimony of Samuel Gompers

Testimony of John Morrison, Machinist (1883)

The Western Federation of Miners