History labor organizations

History railroad labor organizations

The operating labor organizations were established originally as insurance-benefit societies because the early working conditions of railroad employees were so hazardous that private insurance companies refused to insure them. This insurance function still represents a major part of the unions' activities.

Eugene Debs, an American socialist and labor organizer, was an active railroad union leader during the late 1800s. He was grand secretary and treasurer of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen from 1880 to 1893, when he resigned to organize and become president of the American Railway Union. He led the American Railway Union in the Pullman Strike of 1894, a violent labor dispute in which federal troops were sent to make sure that the United States mail was delivered.

In 1894 United States President Grover Cleveland dispatched federal troops to Chicago, Illinois, to break a railroad strike against the Pullman Palace Car Company. Cleveland claimed the strike interfered with delivery of the U.S. mail. Here, armed federal troops are on top of the train during the strike.

History labor organizations
Locomotives from the eastern and western United States are depicted here meeting in Promontory, Utah, where crowds gathered to watch the joining of the Union Pacific and Central Pacific railroads on May 10, 1869. This first transcontinental railroad opened the West to supplies and resources from the East and served as the chief means of transportation for settlers in the West.

The National Protective Association of Locomotive Engineers, founded in 1855, survived for only five years. In 1863 the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers, the first union organization of railroad workers, was organized. The Brotherhood of Conductors was organized in 1869; its name eventually was changed to the Order of Railway Conductors and Brakemen. In 1873 the Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen was established; in 1906 it became the Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen and Enginemen. An active leader in this union was the American socialist and labor organizer Eugene V. Debs, who assumed leadership in the 1880s. The Brotherhood of Railroad Brakemen, founded in 1883, became the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen in 1899. The Switchmen's Union of North America was organized in 1894 after an initial start as the the Switchmen's Mutual Aid Association.

Similar Post You May Like

  • Republic South Africa Rail System

    South Africa Rail System

    The Republic of South Africa has a well-developed rail system called Spoornet. Spoornet is a commercially run division of a state-owned company.

  • Rail Lines North Africa

    Rail Lines North Africa

    Travel (Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia): The nationalized rail systems of Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia form a network of coast-hugging lines that extend short distances into the interior.

  • Rail System Nigeria

    Railroads western Africa

    A number of separate railroads serve western Africa, with the largest single system in Nigeria. Most of these lines consist of a main stem running inland from each countryes major port

  • East African Railways

    East African Railways

    East African Railways, a rail network that was jointly operated by Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania, broke up in 1977. Each country now administers its own system with varied success.

  • Latin America Railroads

    Latin America

    Approximately 75 percent of the railroads in Latin America are concentrated in Argentina, southern and eastern Brazil, and Mexico.

  • Railroad in Asia

    Railroad in Asia

    Railroads are the chief mode of transportation in Asia, although the level of development is mixed. Some countries, such as Russia and Japan, have vast, sophisticated networks.

  • Indian Railways

    Indian Railways

    From its first railway in 1853, the Indian Railways has grown to become Asia second largest (after China) and the worlds third largest state-owned railway system

  • Railways Australia

    Railways Australia and New Zealand

    The Australian national government has begun privatization of the national railways. The Australian railway industry continues to evolve from a number of separate state