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About The Wageworker. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1904-???? | View Entire Issue (March 31, 1905)
i Tlie Waeworker
A Newspaper with a Mission and without a Muzzle that is published in the Interest of Wageworkers Everywhere.
LINCOLN, JfEBKASKA, MARCH 31, 1905
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The Labor Record of
The Nebraska Legislature
If The Wageworker has at any time asserted that the present
legislature has failed to enact any labor legislation, it here and now
takes it back and apologizes.
The Jegislature of 1905 has made a record for the enactment of
labor legislation, and that record will, go thunderingdownt the ages
and be preserved in the archives of labor as long as time shall last.
And when the heavens shall be rolled together as a parchment scroll ;
when Gabriel, leaving his post of duty by the side of the great white
throne, shall stand forth with one foot upon the mighty land and the
other upon the bottomless sea, proclaiming in thunder tones through
his golden trumpet that times shall be no more, the record of the
Nebraska legislature upon the labor question will rise up like a
resurrected soul and be the wonder and the admiration of the heav
enly hosts throughout all eternity.
The Nebraska legislature of 1905 enacted into law an eight-hour
day for monkeys.
Hereafter it will be unlawful "for a monkey to work more than'
eight hours a day in Nebraska. Men, women and children may be
forced to toil from sun to sun, but the monkey is given the eight
hour day from now on.
Glorious news. Carry it around the world and emblazon it upon
th: banners that are flung upon the outer wall Nebraska's legisla
te e thinks more of monkeys than it does of human beings.
But perhaps that is natural. It is said that "a little fellow feel
ing makes us wondrous kind." We no longer doubt it, for the law
makers of Nebraska have given ocular proof of the truth of the say
ing. What else but a "fellow feeling" could have induced a legisla
ture that haughtily turned down every request of human working
men to give the monkeys an eight-hour day?
The monkeys have no reason to complain. They were effect
ively and thoroughly represented in the Nebraska legislature. Blood
is thicker than water.
A GREAT SMOKER.
The Allied Printing Trades of Omaha had a "smoker" last Sat
urday night, and it was a winner. There were fully 200 members of
the allied trades present, and the feast of good things, material and
intellectual, made it well worth while to be there. The editor of The
Wageworker was there, and had Charley Righter along for com
pany. Both of them were thrown down and union cigars thrust into
their pockets. They were fed sandwiches and coffee until they had
to loosen, the straps on the back of their vests, and then they cheered
the eight-hour day speeches until they were so hoarse they had to
mike signs to the hotel clerk.
William J. Bryan addressed the "session," over which Theodore
McCullagh presided, and made an eight-hour day speech that brought
out round after round of applause. E. Rosewater and G. M. Hitch
cock both made rousing eight-hour day speeches, and both of them
employ union men and observe the eight-hour day. Samuel Reese
toM the- boys the eight-hour day1 would- come onlyv at the end' of a
fight, and he said he was ready to fight against it. The boys know
Sam Reese, and they know he knows how to fight. But his brief re
marks had the effect of shaking the confidence of the men and they
are beginning to realize that they have a scrap on their hands. A
guitar and mandolin club rendered sweet music, and the Elks quartet
two of whom are printers sang well.
From a social standpoint the "session" was .a huge success, and
it will doubtless have a beneficial effect." Mr. Bryan made a hit by
saying that he was not a member of any union, but he thought he
was eligible to membership in the Stereotypers' Union, because he
could prove by every republican organ and rator in the land that he
made stereotyped speeches. And the stereotypers cheered louder
than all the rest.
CENTRAL LABOR UNION.
The Central. Labor iUnioa transacted only routine business last
Tuesday evening. It was decided to let the next convention of the
American Federation of Labor attend to the matter of framing a con
stitution. Mr. Schiermeyer of the organization committee reported
that there were 112 telegraph operators in the city, twelve of whom
were employed by the Western Union and four by the Postal, the
rest being employed on private and leased wires. He further re
ported that the outlook for organizing them was very poor. Mr.
Schiermeyer was given credentials as a member of the central body,
and as he expects to be in Deshler in a few days he will endeavor to
do a little missionary work in the big broom factory at that place.
Every union represented reported trade from good to excellent,
and the outlook for the season reported as remarkably good.
An incipient effort to inject a little politics into the meeting was
nit;pcd in the bud by a point of order, but it was easily seen where
the. delegates, all stood in relation to municipal politics this spring.
The constitution of the Central Labor Union prohibits politics in its
meetings, and the rule was rigidly adhered to.
An earnest appeal was made to all union men, and especially
the members of the skilled trades, to stand by the laborers and help
them in their efforts to organize.
DON'T FORGET SIMMONS.
If there are 1,800 union labor votes in Lincoln, and there are,
Charley Simmons should poll exactly 1,800 union labor votes for
city clerk. He is a union man. His unionism is practical and not
theoretical, for he has long been affiliated with the Typographical
Union, is a practical printer and a "square man." His ability to
transact the business of the office if elected is beyond question.
The Wageworker has not one word to say against his oppo
nent. Mr. Pratt,' for Mr. Pratt is a good fellow and has made a
good city clerk. But Mr. Simmons is just as good a fellow and
wilt make. just as gootl an official. And Simmons carries a union
caid. That ought to bo sufficient recommendation to all union men
when all other things arc equal.
THROUGH WITH A WHOOP.
. The resolution presented by the Allied Printing Trades to the
city council, was read the third time last Monday night and adopted
with but one dissenting vote, that of II. F. Bishop, who got real
futinv. The resolution was in effect that the city hereafter give its
printing so far as possible to shops and newspapers having permis
sion to use the Allied Printing Irades label. Mr. JtJishop tried to be
funny by moving an amendment to favor the Masonic and Grand
Army of the Republic organizations. Mr. Bishop's efforts in the
humor line created a hearty laugh from Mr. Bishop.
Councilman Stewart introduced the resolution and kept his
eagle eye upon it until it was landed safely.
BUILDING TRADES COUNCIL.
A meeting was held Monday evening for the purpose of talking
over the idea of organizing an allied council of the building trades,
and all trades were represented. The matter was discussed in all of
its bearings, and the general opinion was that such a council was
badly needed, not only for the protection of the unions but for the
protection and advantage o . fair employers. ' (
' Nothing definite was decided on, although good progress vyas
made, and another meeting will be called in a few days.
FRANK W. BROWN
Why Union Men Should Vote For Him
For Mayor of Lincoln
, The municipal election will be held on April 4,. therefore this is the last
issue of The Wageworker before the bittle of the ballots is fought. During
the brief campaign that has been waged this newspaper has tried to honestly
and carefully set forth what it believed to be the real facts in the case and the
real issue at stake. It has endeavored to show that the so-called issue ofi
license fee is merely a bugaboo raised by designing men and combines for the
purpose of attracting attention away from the real issue.
The Wageworker has insisted, and still insists, that the attempt to make
a difference of $500 in the amount of the saloon 'license fee the vital issue of .
. the campaign is an insult to intelligence and a shrewd trick turned for the
purpose of deceiving the gulliable. The real issue before the people is
whether the next city administration shall be an administration for all the
people, or an administration representing a faction of the dominant . party
the faction that has axes to grind and with sanctimonious face and hypocriti
cal whine asks the general public to turn its grindstone. In this campaign labor
has a peculiar interest, for an opportunity is afforded labor and especially
union labor to demonstrate that it will stand by its friends and give the;
support of their influence and their ballots o men who are fair employer?;
of labor. Ever since its initial numbej- The Wageworker has been striving,
to divorce the workingman from parti an politics and persuade him to vote
in his own interests father than in the interests of machine politicians. All
things else being equal, a man should vote for his party candidates, but the
union man who votes for partisan car didates who have shown no signs oft
friendship for union labor, and against! men who have shown friendship for
. union labor, is untrue to himself and ut .true to the cause of unionism.
In this campaign two men have be.n nominated for mayor. One of them
has shown no particular friendship for -jinion labor, save with his mouth and
even by his voice his disregard for thej principles and plans of unionism has
been shown on more than one occasio'x. Granted that Mr. Hutton has em
ployed union men, and granted that he, is not an antagonist of unionism, the
fact still remains that he has given the unions of the building trades no en
couragement or support, and as an employer his pay roll is very small.
On the other hand, Frank W. Brown is not only a large employer of
labor, but he is a "closed shop" employer. Craftsmen who work for him
must, belong to the union of their craft, be it carpenter, painter or teamster.
He not only urges men to join the union, but he insists that they do so be
fore they are put upon his payroll. , He employs nearly one hundred men!
either as millmen, painters or teamsters, and every man so employed is a
union men.v His craft pay roU . exceeds; $50,000 year;" and every' dollar of :
this vast sum goes into the pockets of union men. ' He is outspoken in his)
advocacy of organization, and has no hesitancy in saying that he would
rather deal with unions than with individuals when it comes to the matter of
There is in existence an association of manufacturers having for its ob
ject the securing and the maintaining of the "open shop," knowing that the
"open shop" means the ultimate destruction of the labor unions. These men
want to destroy the unions because the unions prevent the exploitation of
labor and the piling up of greater profits at the expense of those who toil.
When Mr. Brown was urged to become a member of this association and he
was so asked he emphatically declined, saying that he preferred union men
because it insured him better workmen; better results and better profits.
Mr. Brown is accounted a man of considerable wealth, but every dollar
has been made' openly and above board and is the result of tireless energy
coupled with business sagacity. He took hold of the Lincoln Sash and Door
Mills when it was a broken down concerrn employing less than a dozen men.
Today it is one of the big concerns of the city and gives employment to from
75 to 90 men all of them union men and drawing the union scale or more.)
He has built up a splendid lumber business. He is interested in a number of
other business enterprises. And in all of them he has used the same fair!
methods with labor. Recognition of the union is not an expedient with Mr.
Brown. He did not seek the nomination for mayor. He is a candidate be-',
cause the demand for a live, capable business man for mayor centered upon
him as the most available man. And years before he ever dreamed of be
coming a candidate for any office he recognized the unions, doing so, because
he figured it out on a business basis and determined that he could get better
returns for the "money paid to labor by employing men whose union cards
were evidence of their skill as workmen. He has seen no reason to changed
Mr. Brown is a successful business man the kind of a man Lincoln
needs at the head of the administration. Lincoln has outgrown the little
politician,, the self-seeker, the machine supporter and the theorist. The mu
nicipal business of Lincoln runs into the thousands of dollars every month,
and that business needs the control of a thorough business man.
The Wageworker is supporting Mr. Brown for two reasons: He is a
capable business man who will, if elected, give Lincoln a clean, businesslike
administration. He has shown his friendship for labor organizations in a '
material way. These are reasons enough why not only union men should .
support him, but why he should receive the support of every voter who wants
the business interests of Lincoln looked after by a business man. If the,
excise question cuts any figure at all, Mr. Brown's record as a member of
the excise board shows where he stands. He stands for the strictest enforce
ment of the Clocumb high license law and the' excise rules and regulations;
of the city. In a word, Frank W. Brown stands for a better and gjreater.
Lincoln. His every interest is here, and as a loyal citizen he will seek to do
all that lies within his power to advance the material and moral welfare of
The Wageworker believes that Mr. Brown will be elected. It believes it
because it believes in the good judgment of the voters of Lincoln. It believes
it because it has faith that the workingmen of the city will seize the oppoi'4
tunity to give their approval to a man who has shown himself to be a fair
employer and a friend.
If the 1,700 union voters of Lincoln vote as a unit for a man who em
ploys only union men not because he has to, but because he has found it to
his financial advantage to do so then Frank W. Brown will be elected be-:
yond a peradventure. '
The election of Mr. Brown will do more to give union labor a standing .
in the political arena, more to make the machine politicians "sit up and take
notice" than anything else that could happen.
The Wageworker appeals to all union men especially, and all voters in
general, to cast their votes for Frank W. Brown. -
Time That Union Labor
Showed Its Voting Strength
The municipal election this spring affords union labor an ex
cellent opportunity to show its strength and. at the same time ad
vance the material welfare of the city. The election of Frank W.
Brown will convince the' most skeptical that the "labor vote" is a
tangible fact, and make the union men of this city a factor to be.
reckoned with in future campaigns. ', , - v " .v
A . . .1 ' i! : . i i j. i ,., ; e im -
inure man one tuiivciuiuu in mis siaLc liic eaitor 01 inc
Wageworker has made a plea for the recognition of the ttnipn work
ingmen by the nomination of a union man upon the ticket, and every
time he has met with a response something like this: V 1
"O, what's the use? The fools won't stick together-" .
That's the adjective used. "The - fools!" And it might
just as well be admitted that the adjective is partly deserved, for we
haven't stuck together like we should. As long as the labor vote is
divided along partisan lines it will not be a force to be reckoned
with. But when the labor vote is solidified in the interests of labor
and good government, then it will be a force to be reckoned with -not
only that, but a force that will swing elections.' ,
In the present campaign union men are confronted by a condi
tion. They are afforded an opportunity to vote for a. man whose
friendship for unionism is a matter of everyday demonstration; He
employs nearly a hundred union men. He pays the .union scale and
better. He conducts a "closed shop" by insisting that a man must be
a union man before he goes on his pay roll. He does this because he
has found it advantageous to do so. The solid labor vote of Lincoln
will elect this man mayor, and as mayor he will be in a position to be
of material assistance to the cause of unionism while administering
the affairs of the city on a business basis. ,v ; -, " :
His election will demonstrate that in the -future the workingmen
of this city must be consulted, and that there are other forces in poli
tics than the cheap politicians who meet in, back rooms and fix up
slates calculated to advance their own.selfish interests. . His election
will demonstrate that the " fools", have learned something 'in
the days gone by, and that henceforth the " ' fools" will be those
who imagine that the labor vote can be divided on partisan lines as
in the old days. ' - .t , ' v. .. ' N-
Two advantages are to be gained by electing Frank W. Brown
mayor. One advantage will be the demonstration of the strength of
the labor vote. But an even greater advantage will be that it will
put a man of business ability at the head of the city administration,
thus insuring business dealings, clean-city government and rigid en
forcement of the law regardless of favOr. '
What will the labor vote do about it? :"
Will the labor vote divide along partisan lines as it has too often
done in the days gone by, and thus gave the machine politicians proof,
that "the : fools won't stick together ?','.
Will, the labor vote allow itself to be used as the tail to political
kites flown by scheming politicians? . ; 1 ' - r,
w win tne iaDor vote seize tne opportunity to xiemon.trate
strength, -to sliow its friendship for a;iVsquare!man"'Hjfd to secure a,
business administration for the beautiful city which we all love s&
well? .' . . ,
The Wageworker is ' not worrying,, much about the result." It "
opines that the labor vote will be a practically solid vote, and it be
lieves it because it is convinced that a quiet revolution is going on in
the ranks of labor all over the country. . ' i " '
, "The fools" are going to stand together, unless all signs .
fail. And when the victory is won and union men are rejoicing over
the result and profiting by the object lesson, there will be no further
talk about "the fools" not sticking together.
A vote for Frank W. Brown is a vote in the interests of organ-'
iz-ed labor and the interests of good, clean able city administration'.
THE LABEL LEAGUE.
The Yomen's Union label League kept open hduse last Mon
day night and entertained a large number bf guests. The occasion
was an "open meeting" for the purpose of arousing interest in the
work of the League, and the interest and enthusiasm manifested gave
evidence that the effort was- a success. A pleasing feature of the
meeting was, the presence of a large number of men and women who
have not heretofore attended labor meetings of similar nature, and
they enjoyed themselves so thoroughly that they may be, depended
upon to take part in future meetings of the same kind.
Mrs. S. J. Kent presided and announced the various features of
the program. Mr. Maupin, Mr. Kent, Mr. Kelsey, Mr." Schiermever-:
and Mr. Swanson made brief talks on union lines," and each speaker
laid especial stress upon the good work for unionism that the women
nnitlfl flr :iiirl -w&rt rlni n or ,
v The Misses Turner rendered a piano duet and wert liberally ap
plauded, and little Misses Dorothea and Rachel Swanson sang a duet :
in -a manner that won for them warm, praise. Miss Scbamp recited
and added much to the interest of the prograroT Master Lawrence
Ktnt,.vho was so little that his head barely showed above the table
when he stood on a chair, sang a couple of songs and brought .down
the house. Then he had to sing anither one, and when that was
finished he was compelled to recite something." As a matter of fact.
Master Lawrence was the bright particular star, both because of his
ability and his youth.
Punch and ladyfingers were served in abundance, and a social
good time followed the set program. . Several old-fashioned quad
rilles were danced, and the spectators had as much fun out of them
as the participants did. . . '
The social was a great success from every, point of view and
will doubtless result in a largely increased membership for the
League. The Women's Union Label League is an organization that
should have a membership of a thousand in Lincoln, and H union
men knew what the league could do for unionism with such a mem- '
bership every one of them would resolve himself into a hustling com
mittee and see that the membership was brought up. to that figure.
The League is yet small numerically, bqt it is cutting a big figure in
the work of unionism by its insistent demand for the label, r
A MASS MEETING.
There was an impromptu mass meeting of union men at Red (
Ribbon hall last Tuesday evening. It was called immediately after
the meeting of the Central Labor Union, and was participated in by
more than half a hundred men." . ' 1 . ,-"',- . ... .
Several rousing good talks were made, and the desirability of
standing together in the present campaign was emphasized by every
speaker. One speaker thoughtlessly referred to "cheap labor," and
the result was a call-down that shook the building. The offending
member apologized and explained that what he meant was unskilled
labor, and things went on smoothly thereafter. But the episode
served to arouse the union spirit and the need of more .thorough or
ganization of the unskilled workingmen was made very evident. :.
Insofar as politics was concerned the meeting. was, very one
sided. A motion was made to endorse FranktW. Brown for mayor,
but it .was lost. Then some one asked that all who advocated Mr.
Brown's election stand up, and every man present arose with a
whoop"; ' - ' ;- . ;'; '. .'' -, 1 ':".'.
"The meeting was called right after the Central " Labor Union
meeting," explained one man, "and we voted down the resolution
because we did not want it to go out that the central body endorsed
any candidate. " But We are all for Brown, just the same."
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