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About The Wageworker. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1904-???? | View Entire Issue (April 14, 1905)
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THE WAGE WORK
A Newspaper with a Mission and without a Muzzle that is published in the Interest of Wageworkers Everywhere.
LIXCOLN, NEBRASKA, APRIL 14, 1905
E R f ;
Child Labor The
Mrs. Ed D. Donnell, general secretary-treasurer of the Woman's
International Auxiliary of the International Typographical Union, in
a letter to the Cincinnati Chronicle says in part:
The Woman's Auriliary to Typographical Union No 3 was
visited at its last meeting by Mr. Joseph Heberle, secretary of the
Educational committee of the Central Labor Council. Mr. Heberle
is very much in earnest as to the rights of the children of Cincinnati
to be furnished with free school books, and that the curse of child
labor in our factories should be stamped out.
I am free to confess that until very recently I had never given
the question of child labor any thought because 1 suppose, I didn't
know anything about it.
Having been born and reared in. a smaller city, where most chil
dren are expected to attend the local schools until they graduate, the
thought of children at! the age of 10 to 14 years being required to work
that the rest of the family might live, was derived from a story in a
Sunday school paper, where the boy always turned out to be a great
man and finally became a banker.
We are informed by. those who have made the .question a study
that the Cincinnati factories employ a very large number of children
under the legal age. If this is true, and we have no reason to doubt
it, it were time that the Central Labor Council take the matter up in
, earnest and insist that the state law against this practice be enforced,
and that other and more stringent laws be enacted if necessary.
Surely every mother, if she has one spark of feeling for her chil
dren, desires that they grow to manhood and womanhood to be an
honor to themselves and to her who gave them birth:
It is not to be denied that the influence which surrounds young
girls in factories is not of the best. It is true that there are hundreds
of girls in our factories who arc just as pure and ladylike as girls in
other walks of life; but they will admit that the moral atmosphere is
not the thing for a child just budding into girlhood.
We have all respect and admiration for the young lady of proper
age who is willing to go out to work in a factory or some one's
kitchen, where the necessity requires. She has the same right to
make and pay her way as her brothers, but we know that she should
be kept under the watchful eye of her mother until she knows at least
the difference between right and wrong, and has received the training
and acquired the knowledge to maintain her respectability and guard
her character above reproach. Aside from the fact that these chil
dren in our factories working for a mere pittance, take the place of
men who are walking the streets today looking for work, is the
thought of what their future will be.
Mothers, if you are at all interested in this question, other than
from a monetary standpoint, take your stand on one of the downtown
corners some morning at G o'clock and look into the faces of the young
girls from 10 to 14 years of age who hurry by on their way to work.
Pale, tired-looking, worn these are the girls whom we expect to be
the mothers' of a future generation of toilers. One can only imagine
what the outcome will be.
As a means of awakening public interest in this question, it has
been suggested that the ministers of our city churches be asked to aid
in this work by demanding from their pulpits that child labor be sup
pressed. iW e shouldn t think that any self-respecting minister
Volume Two, Number One
With this issue The Wage worker enters upon, the second year of its
existence. This is not the first labor paper ever started in Lincoln, but it "is
the first one that ever lived long1 enough to issue fifty-three consecutive week
ly numbers, and in that respect, at least, The Wageworker has broken all' '
records. Whether or not it has broken any other records in the labor news
paper line remains for its patrons and supporters to say.
The Wageworker was started to meet what seemed ' to be a growing
demand for a newspaper that would be a medium through which union men
and women could gecorae better acquainted. It started out without a single
subscriber paid in advance, and only 150 who had promised to pay a quarter
for a three months' subscription. The 'second year begins with 1,073 bona
fide subscribers, nine-tenths of .whom . have paid in advance. The regular"
weekly issue now exceeds 1,150 papers.
During the year The Wageworker "has made an 'earnest effort 'to be of
service to the unionists of the city. It has not, and never will, pose as a
"leader of labor," but will always strive to be an educational force. With
politics as politics it will have nothing to do in politics as it affects the
interest of union men and women it will undertake to play a prominent part.
What The Wageworker has been and what it has done it will continue to be
and to do, only to a greater and a better extent if possible.
To the earnest and loyal union men and women of Lincoln who havei
given The Wageworker their hearty support and co-operation the editor
returns his heartfelt thanks. Without them The Wageworker could not have
lived through the year. With them it has come through with flying colors.
Through and by a continuance of their support it hopes to accomplish greater
good for the cause of unionism in the future.
Mr. and Mrs. M. T. Caster enter
tained a number of friends last Mon
day evening in honor of Mr. and Mrs.
George DeBolt. The evening was de
voted to games and sociability and at
a seasonable hour the hostess served
a two-course luncheon. Mr. and Mrs.
DeBolt are preparing to move to Cali
fornia in a short time, and the affair
was planned as an expression of
friendship. Those present enjoyed a
most delightful evening and in part
ing wished for the guests of honor a
CAPITAL AUXILIARY'S APRIL SOCIAL.
At Bohanon's hall on Wednesday evening, April 19, Capital Auxiliary
No. 11 to Lincoln Typographical Union No. 1509 will give its April fpcial, and
all union printers and their wives are cordially invited to attend. The last
was poorly attended, and the excuse offered by printers who were not pres
present was: "I knew nothing about it until it was over." This notice is"
prominent enough to make that excuse ineffectual. There will be an unusu
ally good program, good music, a social good time and good light refresh
ments. Everything will be good. It will cot a union printer just 15 cents
to get in and have a share in these good things. Being good hearted and
great on bargains, the Auxiliary members offer this good bargain a union
printer and his wife will be admitted for 25 cents.
would refuse this request. We have thought at times that our clergy
are not as much interested in saving the souls of the working man and
his family as they are in catering to the whims and fancies of that
so-called upper class who contribute so largely to their salaries. If
they were they would get out and solve for themselves the oft re
peated question: "Why do the laboring class not attend church?"
With few exceptions the ministers of Cincinnati take little or no
interest in the working man. Two of the largest religious publishing'
houses in Cincinnati the Methodist Book Concern and the Christian
Standard Publishing Company are notoriously unfair to organized
labor. We believe we have yet to see a single bit of printed matter
sent out by a minister which carried the Allied Printing Trades
Label. Why is this? That is the question that the trades. unionist
is-asking today, and the question that the minister will stutter over
every time it is put to him.
Let our ministers indicate a willingness to meet the working man
half way, let him occasionally add to his offer of salvation in the
hereafter a plea for the-4etter conditions of roan "here on earth, and
we believe there will be fewer empty seats in the churches and more
standing room in the opera houses.
CENTRAL LABOR UNION
Declines to Recommend Men for Ap
pointment to Office
Last Tuesday night the Central La
bor Union went on record as opposing
the official endorsement of any particu
lar man for political appointment.. The
matter wus brought up because several
union men were after the appointment
as street commissioner and sidewalk
inspector under the new city adminis
tration. Teamsters' Union No. 440 rec
ommended the re-appointment of John
Anderson as street commissioner and
Bert Corner us sidewalk Inspector.
The recommendations were placed on
Die. Afterwards the action mentioned
rage was "good, plus." This was
greeted with applause from all sides.
The attendance was unusually good,
owing perhaps to the fact that every
body thought there might be some
"doings" relative to political endorse
ments. The excitement was sup
pressed,! however, and .tilings moved
Popular Deputy Labor Commissioner
Will Hold His Job
Deputy Labor Commissioner, Burritt
Bush, has been re-appolnted for an
other term by Governor Mickey, and
the re-appointment meets with the
above was taken. It seemed to be the I hearty approval of every unionist in
general opinion that the best way to
do was to submit a list of several
names, wit II the information that the
appointment of any one of them would
be satisfactory to the union men of
the city. A meeting of the Central
Ijibor Union was called for Thursday
night, for the purpose of recommend
ing a numb of men to Mayor Brown.
The Labor Temple committee report
ed progress and promised to have
something definite to report at the
next meeting. !
Every union represented reported
the state of trade from "good" to
"never better," and the general ave-
the state. Mr. Bush has made an ex
cellent official, and during the last
session of the legislature kept the
unionists posted on what was. being
done in matters affecting their inter
ests. He has also enlarged the scope
of the bureau's work.
Don DeSpaln, his assistant, has also
been re-appointed, which was a recog
nition of good work faithfully per
formed. The roster of clerks in the of
fice will remain unchanged. .
safe journey and good fortune in their
future home. '
The International Union of Flour
and Cereal Mill Employes asks The
Wageworker to make the following an
"All flour made by the Washburn
Crosby Milling Co. is still on the 'We
do not patronize' list. When a settle
ment is reached you will b officially
The 1 Lincoln Gas & Electric Light
Co. have a few words to say to you
this week. Gas for fuel is cheaper
ON THE CANAL
Government Jobsters Seek to
the National Statutes
Chief Engineer Wallace of the Is
thmian Canal Commission had an In
tel view with Secrets. ry Taft last Mon
day in which conditions on the canal
were discussed. '"Afterward Mr. Wal
lace met such members of the commis
sion as are in the city.
As to the right of ; the commission to
employ labor for more than eight
hours per day, there is a belief that
the eight-hour iaw'Joes not apply to
the canal zone." Chief Engineer Wal
lace says that It would very seriously
impede work to have the - eight-hour
law in effect during the construction
of the canal. It would be impossible
to make uniform hours for all labor,
because some labor must be twelve
hours, while ten hours is the regular
rule for most of the workingmen.
. Chief Engineer Wallace could "ex
pedite" the work of the canal by
working the laborers twenty-four ,hours
a day instead of twelve or thirteen. If
the canal work and the canal zone are
under the control of this government
then the laws of this government, and
not the whims -of some engineer,
should prevail. The government law
makes eight hours a day's work for
the government although compara
tively few among the clerks and chiefs
work that long. But the common la
borers and the mechanics in the gov
ernment employ have to put in full
There is no more reason why the
canal laborers should be made to vio
late the law than there is that the
flag should float over a territory where
United States authority does not pre
Tom Foley of Omaha,, was in Lin
coln one day last week, shaking hands
with old friends and making new ones
at the rate of sixty a minute.
Harry E. Moores, general agent of
the Wabash Passenger department,
with headquarters in Omaha, was in
Lincoln Thursday, looking up the fes
tive tourist and telling everybody he
met that the Wabash was the real
route to all eastern points and re
sorts. This is Mr. Moores' first ap
pearance for some time, as he has
been laid up with a pair of fractured
ribs, but the "slats" are all right now
and he is more than making up for
Governor Vardamann, of Mississippi, seems to have some very
queer ideas of what constitutes "Industrial progress,", and equally
queer ideas of what constitutes "inducements to prospective home
seekers." Recently William E. Curtis of the Chicago Record-Herald
interviewed Governor Vardamann and asked him, "What is your ad
ministration doing to improve the condition of the people of your
State?" ; :
"Mississippi is making noticeable industrial progress," replied
Governor Vardamann. "I think the state is in better condition than
ever before and is improving every month. Our greatest need, in
my judgment, is the immigration of the better Class of 'white people;
not laborers, but farmers and mechanics, who are competent to be
landlords and nofmerely tenants. We want home owners and home
builders ; men who will save their money and invest it wisely ; and
give permanent prosperity to Mississippi and stability to the laboring
element of the state." ' .
This was all right, had Governor Vardamann stopped there. But
he went right on and opened his mouth so wide that, it admitted his
foot so far that his instep collided" with his epiglottis.. After enumer
ating Mississippi's undoubted advantages of soil and climate, health
fulness and opportunity, the governor tried to show up some other
things that he called "advantageous." Listen to what he said; -
"The people of. Mississippi are absolutely free from the
tyranny of class; we have no plutocrats, no monopolies' to
grind us down and NO LABOR UNIONS TO INTER- '
FERE WITH THE FREEDOM OF WORKINGMEN.
We have no strikes, no strife over wages or hours, no riots."
Having no labor unions it naturally follows that there is "no
strife over wages and hours" and a further result is that the hours are
longer and the wages lower than in a majority of the states. Men
and women who lack the energy to organize to protect themselves
against oppression are usually content with whatever their taskmas
ters see fit to give them. ,
A little investigation of the census figures may serve to show
up Mississippi in a little different light to "home owners" and "home
builders" who may have their eyes turned towards Mississippi as a
probable and likely place of residence. ' ;
In Mississippi where there are no labor unions to "interfere with
the freedom of workingmen," the average wage for workingmen is 70
cents a day for an average day of 0y2 hours, or an average of &y2
cents per hour. - ,
In Nebraska, where the number of wage earners is practically
the same as in Mississippi, and where the labor unions are compara
tively strong and active, the average wage is $1.72 a day for an aver
age day of sy2 hours, or an average of 20.2 cents per hour
In other words, the "free and independent workingman" of
Mississippi earns as much in ten and one-half hours as the "servile
slave of the labor unions" in Nebraska earns in three and one-half
hours. ; . . - '
In Mississippi the number of child laborers is 1 in 21 of the adult
working population, and the work day for them averages 11 hours
and the wage 3 cents per hour, ''-..' '
CAPITAL AUXILIARY'S APRIL SOCIAL.
At Bohanon's hall on Wednesday evening, April 19, Capital Auxiliary No.
11 to Lincoln Typographical Union No. 209, will give its April social," and all
union printers and their wives are cordially invited to attend. The last social
was poorly attended, and the eycuse offered by printers' who were not pres
ent was : "I knew nothing about it until it was over." This notice is promi
nent enough to make that excuse ineffectual. There will be an unusually
good program, good music, a social good time and good light refreshments.!
Everything, will be good. It will cost a union printer just 15 cents to get in
and have a share in these good things. Being good hearted and great on
bargains, the Auxiliary members offer dais good bargain a union printer and
his wife will be admitted for 25 cents.
Lost' an Arm
The sympathy of the whole orga
nized labor movement goes out to Sec
ond International Vice President Jas.
Wood of the Cigarmakers' Union, In
his sad affliction in losing his arm,
which had been shattered. It was cut
off by the Washington, D. C, surgeons
after every effort to save it had' failed.
Smoke Lincoln union made cigars
and help boom home industry. It will
Null & McCoy have a new advertise
ment in this issue. This firm handles
union made shoes exclusively.
The Armstrong Clothing Co. adver
tisement deserves your especial atten
tion. It is easy to find.
THE UNLICENSED SALOON MUST GO.
In every move the new excise board may make looking towards the
abolishment of the "drug store saloon" it will meet with the hearty support
of all right-minded people. The drug store saloon must go. It must go be
cause it is an unmixed evil, a menace to the boys and girls, an infringement
on the rights, of men who have paid for the privilege of dealing in liquor, and
illegal in its very nature. No drug store should be allowed to sell alcoholic
liquor save as a. medicine, and then only on the prescription of a reputable
There are drug store soda fountains in this city that sell more alcoholic
beverages than the average saloon, and sell them openly and notoriously to
boys and girls, whory parents are in ignorance of the fast pace their chil
dren are going. A large percentage of the fancy mixtures sold at these drug
store soda fountains not all of them but some of them are practically bar
mixed drinks that are worse than the festive cocktail, the insidious julep or!
the hilarious fizz. The excise board shows gratifying signs of shutting down
on this sort of thing. More power to the. board ! - There are drug stores in
this city doing more damage to society than any saloon ever run in the cor
porate limits of the city. The saloons have no wine rooms. Some of the
drug stores have worse they cater to children of tender year. It would be
a good thing if several hundred fathers and mothers of Lincoln keep a sharp
watch on thfjr boys and girls. Their children are no better or no worse than
other children and "Young America' today is a mighty smooth youth. The
smooth-faced lad of 12 to 17 years of age knows he can not get alcoholic
liquors at a saloon, but he knows drug stores where he can take his "steady"
and bowl up without let or hindrance as long as he can hold up papa for the
money. That's the kind of drug- stores The Wageworker is after, and the
kind of drug stores and excise board is after. And between the two of us
we'll get 'em." . '
The unlicensed saloon in the guise of a drug .store must get out of the
saloon business !
In Nebraska the number of child laborers is 1 in 33 of the adult
working population, and the work Iay for them averages a fraction
less than 9 hours and the average wage is 7 cents per hour.
Mississippi has no child labor law worthy of the name, and as a
result children from 5 years old and upwards are worked in the mills
In Nebraska children under 14 are barrel from employment in
mills and factories. ' '
But Mississippi has no labor unions to "interfere with the liberty
of workingmen," while Nebraska does. , . -v ",
In Mississippi 1,049 children under 16 work for wages, and work
an average of 11 hours a day.
In Nebraska children under 14 are barred from employment in
an average of less than 9 hours a day.
Mississippi's child workers range in age from 5 to 16 years of
age, while Nebraska's child workers range from 14 to 16. years,
Mississippi's 23,643 adult workingmen earn $7,035,534 a year,
while Nebraska's 21,059 adult workingmen earn $10,749,706 a year,
and work one-third less time than their Mississippi brethren. .
Bt (t Mississippi has no labor unions , to 'interfere with the
liberty of workingmen," while Nebraska has several hundred local
labor unions. . - , .
The figures given above refer only to manufacturing industries,
and are given because the labor unions are more intimately con
nected with manufacturing than with any other branch of national
industry.. ' i -
A craftsman who is content to work eleven hours a day at his
trade for the average wage of 70 cents a day could .hardly be ex
pected to have independence enough to strike for his rights and cer
tainly not energy, enough to stir up "strife over wages and hours."
But The Wageworker is of the opinion that Governor Varda
mann has not pictured Mississippi in a light that is calculated, to
attract working men. His picture may appeal to Puritan Massa
chusetts whose millionaires have accumulated their wealth through
the Wood and tears and sweat of child labor and are looking for
fresh pastures where youth runs free. . What retail . business man
in Lincoln would trade his location in a city where unionism is
comparatively strong and wages average $3.00 a" day or more, for
a location in Mississippi where there are no labor unions to inter
fere with the liberty of workingmen" and the average wage is 70
cents a day?
Doubtless Governor Vardamann means well, but he is an ass,
nevertheless. - .
Sadie Puckett is a new advertiser in
The Wageworker. '
Capital Auxiliary social at Bohanon's
hall Wednesday evening, April. 19.
Printers and their wives cordially in
yited. . O. W. Burnes of Omaha, represent
ing the wholesale liquor firm of -George
Biele & Sons, Cincinnati, was mak
ing the rounds in Lincoln one day last
week, and dropped in on The Wage
worker for old times' sake. i
A Good Business
Last Saturday was the best day in
the history of the Lincoln Clothing
Co. This company has been a steady
and liberal advertiser in the columns
of The Wageworker ever since It be
gan business, and it would seem that
its efforts to deserve the patronage of
Wageworker readers are meeting with
success. . n
If a man gets run over by aa street
car a woman is never" sure that isn't
his way of trying to flirt with her
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