The Wageworker. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1904-????, April 29, 1904, Image 1

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Vol.i, Lincoln, Nebraska, April idf, 1904. 3 No. jr
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Blight of "Graft" has Again Hunated It Through
The Actions of a Man Who was Chosen as
Its Representative in This City.
J How Thomas Hokin, Elected Member
Support of Union Voters, Has Injured the Cause ef
Unionism and Betrayed His Supporters.
Again ' ha3 Organtee.l Labor been
shamed and humiliatod by om; of its
clicson representatives. Once more a
member of Organized Labor put up to
represent unionism has humiliated the
cause he was selected to represent, and
brought the blush of Bhame to eveiy
honest, union man's check.
One year ago Thomas Hoskins,' a
member of the Carpenters' and Join
ers' Union, was nominated by the re
publican city convention for the olllce
ot exciseman. The union men of the
city had asked the republicans and
it'emocrats to give the labor unions
1 epi esentation upon their tickets, and
HcHKins was the man selected by the
if publican:. Ho wat recommended
by his firother carpenters, and in
dorsed by members oi other unions as
a man worthy of confidence and veil
fitted to- perform thp responsible di'
ties of exciseman, the Ksit!on tc
h ho aspired. ,
n spite of strons opposition frovn
tain elements of the city, Hoski.-is
as elected by an overwhelming ma
joritj-, and in due time assumed tjc
duties of his office.
With the views held by Hoskliis
upon politics The Wageworker has
nothing to do. With his position upon
the license question, the regulation or
the social evil, or any other public
question coming within the duties of
a member of the excise board. The
Waseworker lias nothing to do. This
. newspaper was well defined opinions
upon all of these questions, and at
proper times wllj not he3itate to make
tar.-in known. But with the ac tloui! of
Hosktns, the chosen representative or
organized labor. The Wageworker has
something to do, and disagreeable as
hat duty Is. it will he perlormed.
I nomas riosKins nas iiuiiim":u
union men who supported him, ha":
added shame to union labor, and in
jured the cause of unionism to a de
cree that years may not he able to
overcome. It is the shame and sci
row of organized labor that so maiy
of its accredited leaders and chosen
representatives have proved thcni
setves unworthy of the trust reposed
in them, and by their actions hav
caused millions to think that organ
ized labor's ranks are made up of
thugs, thieves, tools and grafters. One
Sam Parks in the ranks of unionism
has cast more shame and disgrace
upon unionism than a John Mitcae.'l
ran remove in a lifetime.
And Thomas Hoskins, electee- by
union labor votes on a ticket which
gave liim a place because of his union
ism, ha3 done more to discredit union
ism in Lincoln than a dozen earnest,
responsible and honest, union men
t an. overcome in a half decade. ,
The WageworUer does not uncic'r'
tal:e this task willingly. It under
taes It in sorrow and humility. But
the ase I3 so flagrant, the injury to
organized labor so great, that th-'tan.c
must be performed. '
When Thomas Hoskins permittee; a
member of the police force to circuiali1
a subscription paper among saioon
nien who were soon to come before the
loard of which ho Is a member V". a
renewal of their licenses, he wa.
guilty of a piece of criminal folly, us
A-ell aa of a bit oi dishonesty, that no
areminply sane man would be gui,J?
or. It is claimed that Hoskins' faoi
lly was sick and that he really neclt.- l
the money to care for them. Tin; claim
is too silly to he considered for a mo
ment. . Hoskins i a carpenter uy
'raile, and for several years ht. hit"
been foreman for one of the larg-.l
1 onti'ai tors and builders in l.r.j oln.
If Ma family was 111 and in need, lor
talnly W. B. Hester, his employer
would have come to his asHialamu.
Every man who knows W. 1(. Hester
knows that he is not the kind or a
man to let an employe, or even an ac
fiuaintance. suffer for the necessaries
no ui&ei nun iimi iiii.-nmo a,,.,, .....
acted ' roiifiderable iinlehtoiiness in
order to meet campaign and election
expenses is the purest niooni-hi"1.
Those1 who dirt not know at the tim
of the campaign and election .Hint
Hoskins' expenses were more than
met by the contributions of men in
whoao interests he was working,
know It now. Dare Hoskins make
riut his campaign expense , list and
of the Excise Board by Virtue of the
make affidavit to it? If his tampa;sn
expenses w;re over $60 he perjured
himself when he took the oath ot
ofiice. If they were less, what becomes
of the excuse that he contracted a
heavy indebtedness by reason of his
It is charged, openij- and above
board, that Hoskins has been "graft
ing." Detective Mitchell circulated
a subscription paper, asking donations
to a rund for the relief or Hoskin3,
whose family was said to be sick and
In need. And yet Hoskins bought a
well established rettaurant not lon,
ago. Where did the money eonif
from? Did he deprive his family c
order to purchase the restaurant?
Mitchell says that he took the paper
out on his own responsibility. Pei
haps he did. but up to date the stoiy
ecems especially well suited tor nia
line consumption.
Manager Richards of the Lincoin
hotel declares on oath that he wa?
asked for ?50 for Hoskin3. Council
man Bauen admits that he subscribed
to the "'Hoskins relief Tund," and
Richards and Bauer are both holder
of saloon licenses and in a position
to be sadly hampered and bothered
by an exciseman who does not feel
kindly or even fairly disposed toward.-them-
Even if Mitchell circulated that pa
per with the most humanitarian mo
tives, and wholly without the knowl
edge or oonsent of Hoskins, he was
guilt' of an act so foolish as to come
dangerously near to pure idiocy. And
If Hoskins accepted a penn;- of the
money thus raised he was guilty of an
act that should warrant his impeach
if the charges against Hoskins were
of recent origin there might be some
grounds for believing that they have
been exaggerated. But the rumoi?
have been flying for months. Not un
til .Manager Richards of the Lincoln
hotel had the courage to refuse to be
hell up did others tell what
knew. But more than a year ago the
first rumor of "graft" made its appear
ance. Tom Keane, a would-be police
man, in a burst of confidence, said hi
had paid a designated sum for his ap
pointment. The matter was hushe
up in some wav or other, but it set
parties on wau-h. and there has bee:-,
enough developed during the . last
three or four months to indicate thai
Keane was not talking through hii
The Wagcworker has no particular
admiration for Exciseman Woife's
theories of how saloons and "dives'"
should he controlled, but it takes 'his
occasion to say that it , admires
Wolfe's open methods of stating his
position. Ho did not hesitate to te'i
where he stood before election, liul
Hoskins carried water on both shoul
ders, and while pledged to certain in
terests made claims of
And as sooa as elected ho delivered the
goods, and then began accepting mon
ey that he knew was contributed bj
men who did not dare incur the en
mity of a member of the excise boarc"
Some people may not look upon that
sort of thing as "graft." but The
Wageworker so considers it and an
almighty petty and mean graft," too.
By his actions Thomas Hoskins has
given Organized Labor a blow benealu
the' bell. He has demonstrated his
unworthincis a a represent alive oi
the interests of union labor. He has
proved his unfitness for the position
he occupies. lTnion men who have
ct rived earnestly tq make unionism
synonymous with honesty and fair
ness have been humiliated by a man
who has abus.'rt his office and who is
pointed to with sneers by opponents of
unionism as "a sampie of what union
men are."
If Thomas Hoskins docs not imme
diately resign he should be irnpeacned
and removed. And union men shout"
take the initiative in the work of see
ing to it that the man who has proven"
his unfitness to represent them or to
be entrusted with official position is
no longer allowed to stand as the rep
resentative of organized labor. Union
men should repudiate him, apologize
for their mistake and take steps to
show that their repentance Is heart
felt. ThiB is not the first time that organ
ized labor has been betrayed; not the
first time that one whom it trusted
has been false to the trust. It will
not be the last time, for human nature
is fallible and organized labor is made
up of men. who are as fallible as any
other body of men. But Lincoln un
ion men can and should set the seal
of their disapproval ' upon men who
misrepresent them as Hoskins has
Hoskins has proved his unfitness
either as an official or as a representa
tive of the interests that selected hiai
as its representative. He has an op
portunity to resign. If he refuses tc
avail himself of it, he should be im
peached and removed, and if possibio
to reach him with the strong arm of
the law, he should be vigorous.
A paster in the form of an American
flag, printed in red, white and blue,
bearing the following sentences, ias
reached The Wageworker:
Martial law declared in Colorado!
Habeas .corpus suspended in Colo
rado! Free press throttled in Colorado!
Bull pens for union men in Colo
rado! Free speech denied in Colorado:
Soldiers defy the courts in Colo
rado! 4
Wholesale arrests without warrants
in Colorado!
I'nion men exiled from homes and
families in Colorado!
Constitutional right to bear arms
questioned in Colorado!
Right of fair, impartial and speedy
trial abolished in Colorado!
Citizens' alliance resorts to mob 1 tw
and violence in Colorado!
Militia hired to corporations to
break the strike in Colorado!
Unions Should Level Up, Not Down
(By Henry White, Secretary United
The chief test of unionism is
its ,
effect upen the character of the la
dividual workman.
. It is not sufficient to show that un
ionism has advanced the worker ma
teiially. If the labor struggle tends to make
the laborer self-reliant ami develop
his facilities, it is opinestimable va'ue.
If, however, it tends ultimately to
suppress the individual, lessen his ca
pacity and make him suboidinate to
the mass, it not only fails of its p' r
pose, but works serious injury.
The individual workman undei
modern methods of industry is una
bie to assert himself. He is sublet
to conditions upon which unaided he
is unable to make an impression.
Alone he is a nonentity. His intii
viduality is that respect is submer'-d.
He regains it by acting with other
workmen having allied interests. In
dividual striving then gives way to
joint endeavor.
Personal ambition today has com
paratively little outlet unless collec
tively' expressed. The single work
man in order to advance himself if
obliged to help improve the lot of ' is
fellows. Organization comes to his
aid. In so far, therefore, as combina
tion enables him to do that it is ben
The immediate object of organiza
tion is to obtain for the individual
member more freedom, in order to "n-
able him better to cope with hard con
ditions and thereby increase his
chances in an unequal contest; but
when unions gain a foothold and feel
secure they reiax in their vigila'ce
and soon lose the virile qualities
which enable tluem to withstand ad
, Their object then is to make things
easy tor the inemners to aiminipn
their personal alertness and discour
age the ambition to excel that makes
for efficiency.
Longer cigars of a more uniform de
Eign are promised to tobacco users by
the union cigarmakers of Chicago,
who are asking their brethren
throughout the United States and
Canada to indorse a new bill of prices
and working agreement, which would
mean better pay and changes in work
ing conditions.
By a vote of 231 to 131 the union ci
garmakers decided to submit the pro
position to the international associa
tion, and in less than a month the le
suit will be known. The proposed
agreement also contains a provision,
which would mean a closed shop for
the union cigarmakers in Chicago. L'y
its terms all union men would be re
quired to demand union wages wher
ever they work. This would have the
effect of drawing all union men away
from non-union shops, as it is not ex
pected that non-union employers who
hire union men would pay them union
wages. The closed shop proposition '
was defeated several months ago, but
it is believed by the union men that
the same end can be obtained indirect
ly. The proposed agreement includes
a demand that a uniform gauge be
used for regulating the thickness oi'
cigars. On mold work the propose i
pay is $9 a thousand, whereas hereto
fore the pay has been $8. Under the
$9 scale the length of cigars would
be increased one-fourth of an ; inch
and the old size of four and three
quarters inches would be abolished.
For hand workers an increase from
$9 to $10 a thousand is asked, but the
scale 'vould affect only the makers
of domestic brands.
It also is asked that the employers
pay $2 more a thousand to union mtn
who make "open head ' cigars.
T. W. Evans, Cigarmaker3' Union,
is a busy man. Dues are collected
each week by the secretary and Mr.
Evans stands sceond to none when it
comes to looking after union matters,
Mr. Evans will next week begin to
conduct a column of cigarmakers'
news in The Wageworker.
The Lithographers, numbering neai
ij one thousand men throughout thp
country, have returned to work aftei
being on strike since March 15. Tne
New York civic federation brought
about a settlement of the difficulty,
and an agreement satisfactory to all
parties has been reached.
Garment Workers of America.)
It is the same with a body of men
as it !-': with an individual. In the
struggle for an exfistence the best
faculties are exercised and developed,
and when the object of that striving is
attained the healthful activities are
slackened and decline sots in.
That is why the unions in their
early stages often prove more capable
of withstanding opposition than when
their membership becomes large and
meets with a degree of success.
Unions that have started full
fledged through the effort of other un
ions, and have gained the benefit , of
unionism without .struggle, are often
without stability and really a hiai
ronce to the general movement. They
contribute numbers, but that is only
a dead weight.
Such members accept the fruits that
others have labored for as someiniug
that is due them, and when the arti
ficial props that have supported them
nre withdrawn they fall - away.
If unionism is to endure and fulfill
its highest mission, the dangers that
have been pointed out must be taken
into consideration.
Individual development must be al
lowed full play and allowances made
for special abilities.
Instead of trying to keep all down
to a dead level, every member should
be put upon his merits and not lim
ited in his earnings. In brief, the
workman should be nermltteu fne
same play as when unorganized, while
being reinforced with the combined
strength of his fellow workmen.
The function of the union is to in
sure fair play and to enforce a stand
ard of wages and hours based upon
ihe average abilities. 1 here shoulu be
a grading upward and not downward.
No limitations should be put upon ca
pacities except for reasons of hea rh.
By observing these rules the unions;
would make their position impregna
The senate committee by a vo' ct
five to three has decided to postpone
consideration ot" the eight-hour bill
until the beginning of the session
next December. Evidently they real
ize that they have more to fear fioni
the resentment of capital than from
the resentment of organized laboi.
Capital has a habit of standing to
gether, while labor dissipates its
strength by failing to vote as a unit
in its own interests.
An effort is being 'made to secure
a pardon for S'am Parks, the notorious
labor grafter of New York who is
serving a sentence of four 3'ears and
six months in Sing Sin?. 'He I,: said
to be critically ill. Delegates of the
various labor organizations have deea
asked to sign the petition, but many
of them have refused. Sam Park.
wa3 the business agent of the Struc
tural Iron workers, and was found
guilty of conspiracy and caught red
handed in "grafting" on the employ
ers. His case attracted attention
throughout the country and brought
disrepute upon union labor every
The Wageworker wants to reca.'
a little bit of history for the benefit ol
the "open shop" advocates who ar
trying to wreck unions, and who nev
er lose an opportunity' to denounce or
ganized labor as "anarchist'-,"
"thugs," etc. For obvious reasons
names are suppressed, and the man iu
question will be called Blue because
that is nothing like his real name.
Several years ago a man named
Blue, a printer, but not a union man,
came to Lincoln. He secured work in
a "rat" printery that would not em
ploy union men at the scale, and
whose manager often said he had no
use for labor unions. Blue drew the
magnificent wage of $7 a week, and or
this sum tried to support a family of
five including himself, and educate ilte
three little ones born to him. Of
course he couldn't do it. He fell int-.
debt, become discouraged at the sight
of hi3 loved ones suffering, and in ?
fit of despondency went out to the
fair grounds and blew out his brains.
Did the opponents of unionism step
forward? Did they do anything to
save- Blue from being buried in a pau
per's grave? Did they extend the
helping hand to the widow and or
phans? Of course they did not. They neve
do. But the union printers of the city,
with whom Blue had never affiliated,
and whose interests he had opposed
for months, raised 'a fund and gave
Blue a Christian burial, not in Ihe
Fotter's field, but in the cemetery
where their own loved ones sleep.
They raised enough to provide tor the
widow and orphans for several weeko,
and then enough more to carry them
back to an eastern state where tJie
widow had relatives who would care
for her.
This little bit of history is familial
to union men in Lincoln. It is ou'y
one of the many incidents of iike na
ture that are taking place all over
this broad land every day. When
union wreckers and opponents of orr
ganized labor can point to simiiui
deeds of thoughtfulness and,
when the wreckers and opponent- of
organized iabor can show woi ivC
equally good then, and not till then,
will they be entitled to recognition
for honesty of purpose and kindness
f-f heart.
Thursday evening Capital Auxiliary
No. 11. Lincoln Typographical Union
No. 209, gave a "hard times" social
at Red Ribbon hali. It proved nie
of the most successful socials yet en
gineered by the auxiliary. A system
of -fines for wearing apparel incon
sistent with the idea of "hard timis"
was adtipted, and the women, with an
eye to business, managed to detect
violations of the rules iu the case ot
nearly every one present. . Some of
the costumes were comical In the ex
treme. Swallowtail coats were, wrin
with flannel shirts and overalls, and
"dickies" that knew not soap and
water shone dimly from beneath lhe
shade of jackets that long since out
lived their usefulness. And some of
the women wore frocks tnat would
make a ragpicker green with envy.
A buffet lunch was served "a la carte,"
and the familiar " coffee and sinkeri'
and "hot wenies" played a conspic
uous part.
The Painters' and Dccoratci-s' Un
ion of Omaha has declared a strike
against the master painters, and not
a union paint or paste brush is being
wielded for wages in that city. Tnere
was no question about wages, but the
difficulty arose over the mastei pa:nt
ters refusing to sign an agreement to
continue the scale and recognize the
Union. The master" 'painters cinim
that they can get enough non-union
men to take care of the business, and
say that they have the backing of the
Omaha branch of the D. M. Parry
Union Wrecking association. The
striking painters and decorators asked
only for recognition of their union,
but this was refused. Members of the
Painters' and Decorators' Union are
warned against responding to v.ell
disguised advertisements for painters
in Omaha.
Women's League Starts off With
Promise of Success.
Five Hundred Women Organized for the Pur
pose of Stimulating a Demand for
Union Made Goods.
One of the most successful soclui
and business affairs ever undertaken in
Lincoln was held at Red Ribbon iiaii
iast Tuesday night. It was held undtr
the auspices of the Central Labor Un
ion, and was for the purpose of fur
thering the Organization of the Wo
men's Label League. More than o00
union men and women attended, and
it was reported after the meeting thi
nearly 500 women in Lincoln had en
rolled themselves as members of the
President Kclsey of the Central La
bor Union called the meeting to order,
and in" a clear and consiae manner told
what unionism' means and what unin
men and women should do to further
the interests of labor organization.
His comments on labor's tendency tn
march solidly on Labor Day and then
divide its strength at other times met
with hearty applause, as did his a)
peals to workingmen to stand to- "
gether for their own interests.
Will M. Maupin, spoke briefly on
what energetic work would uo for oi -ganized
labor. He urged every union
man and the wife of every union man
to insist upon the label wnen purchas
ing goods. When he asked how n;jny
union men in the audience could show
c union label under the sweat band of
their hats, less than one-third pres
ent raised their hands. And .when he '
asked how many could show the union
label in the inside pockets of their
coats, still fewer responded. When
he asked how many women could
truthfully say they had not -swept
their houses wjith a convict made
broom, a score arose to their feet
amidst the cheers of the union men
Mr. Shell', Cigarmakers' . Union,
made an earnest appeal to the women
to stand by the union label and poinL
ed out that the label meant good
wages and sanitary conditions for
those who made the goods, while the
absence of the label indicated sweat
shops and contract labor, and taat
these things mean sapping the lile
blood of women and children. Mr.
Shelly won generous applause from
the women by declaring that womea
should receive equal pay for cqua:
work, and that they did receive equal
pay in the trade at which he is em
ployed. His . remarks' were listened
to with close attention, and his evi
dent earnestsess Impressed all wSo
were present. ,
The , object of the Union Label
League is to further the demand for
union made goods, and to encourage
organized labor in -every way possi
ble. The organization is international,
and is being urged by women who aie
engaged in the professions and trade, -as
well the wives of men who hold
membership in labor unions. There is
a benefit feature to the organization
which commends itself to alK
At the close of the business ses
sion refreshments were served by the'
Central Labor Union, and then rnose
present who desired to do so enjoyed
themselves in dancing for a couple or
hours. 1 ;
The women who are pushing hc
work of organization express tuem
selves as well -pleased with the prcg
ress they are making, and win con- v
tinue to work until they have enroilea
every union sympathizer among la
good women of Lincoln.
Monday morning at 1 o'clock a ii;e
was discovered in the barber sn0i.
m the basement of the Burr block
and before the blaze could be extin
guished the whole interior of this
model barber shop was scorched to
such an extent that it was a total Joss.
"Billy" Shannon, proprietor of '"The
Burr," although carrying some insur
ance, suffered a heavy loss. But he
is not discouraged, and says that he
will soon have a "home" for all of 11a
union barbers.
Sheriff Wilcox and forty deputies of
Carbon coWy, Utah, swooped down
on a body of striking miners" and r
rested 120 Italians. The strikers a; e
charged with resisting an officer, but
there is a well defined opinion thai
the charge was trumped and the men
arrested in order to clear the wav for
fli ike-breakers.