The Wageworker. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1904-????, May 15, 1909, Image 1

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2sO. 6
Among the Live
Here, There
New York, May 6 Mr. Frank A.
Kates. Lincoln. Nebr. Dear Sir and
Brother: Acknonledging receipt of
your favor of May 1st. I can assure
you that your letter contained very
pleasing Information, and I trust that
the position taken by the Governor
U a correct one. and fair to free la
bor, whether organlied or unorgan
ized. The letting of. convict labor on
shirts and overalls has decreased the
prices of making these garments, of
which 99 per cent are made by wom
en. You can, therefore, realize what
injury has been done to the women
of our country by prison labor. The
Governor of Nebraska will be com
mended very highly for the position
he takes in this matter.
I desire to thank the Central Body
of Lincoln, Nebraska, for their prompt
action in the matter of letting of
the labor of convicts tor the making
of shirts and overalls, and I trust that
the Governor's positon will be up
held by the other four or five mem
bers of the Board, which (I see by
the Wageworker) were not present
when the Governor decided that the
labor of the convicts should not be
let to make shirts and overalls, and
I trust that the C. L. U. of Lincoln
and other organizations will keep up
their agitations, making It their busi
ness to see the other members who
were not present, and induce them to
coincide with the Governor in his
We are making strenuous efforts
throughout the United States, to have
the making of garments taken from
the various prisons. In Illinois, it has
cost us a great deal of money, and
we have by no means yet reached
any agreement with the Prison Board
and toe Governor of that state. The
action of the Governor ot Nebraska
is highly commendable, and I trust
It will be copied by the governors of
the various other states where this
class of work is done. But our work
will not cease when the garments
are taken from the penitentiaries.
There are several other crafts that
that suffering equally as much, as
the Garment Workers are. from the
fact that their goods are also made
in the penitentiary. I believe that
there are roads in Nebraska that will
not be made for the next two hun
dred years to come, it they are made
then, and I believe that the labor ot
the convicts saould be used on the
muddy roads ot the various states
to put them in good condition tor
traveling. This T-Hild not interfere
very materially with tree labor and
would be a great benefit to the coun
try. In fact, there are some parts
ot the country where the condition of
the farmers is not a very prosperous
one. and they cannot afford to have
good roads, and if the convicts were
set at breaking stones and rocks to
nuke these roads, it would be ot in
estimable value, not only to the farm
ers, but to the country at large. If
this propositoa could not be carried,
the the next best thins, in my
opinion, would be the framing ot a
law the same as it is in the state
of New York, where the convicts man
ufacture tor the state institutions all
their supplies; and if the supplies
eta not be made by the convicts, then,
ot course, they are purchased on the
outside, but in most cases all of the
supplies are made by the convicts and
ia this way it does not injure the
wageworker by making an article
that sells for less than one-halt of
that at which tree labor can produce
it. The year ot the panic the Stir
ling-Reliance Company made a net
profit ot $3,0O on convict labor and
soid Ti-soods so cheap that not less
than a doi. shirt factories in the
state ot Pennsylvania were compelled
to cicse, thus throwing out ot em
ployment from forty to five hundred
girls in every factory. You can read
ily see what injustice it works in the
garment working industry to the em
I am sending you by express pre
paid. 100 posters, showing the tickets
that are sewed on garments made in
toe various penitentiaries. Ot course
these tac similes are only a few, but
no doubt, the garments are sold ln
Lincoln, Nebr, as they are in almost
every city of the United States. Also
250 court plaster cases for distribu
tion among delegates and members of
organized labor in Lincoln, Nebr., and
and Elsewhere
t thank you in anticipation of this
Again thanking you for your inter
est in this important matter and urg
ing you to keep up the work. I am.
with best wishes.
Fraternally yours.
General Secretary United Garment
Workers of America.
The many trades unionists of Lin
coln who heard Raymond Robins when
he was in Lincoln a year ago will be
rejoiced to know that he will prob
ably attend the State Federation
of Labor meeting next month.
Raymond Robins is the "livest wire"
in the trades union movement. His
superior as a public speaker does not
exist, and he knows the gime from
Alpha to Omega. Trades unionists
may well rest content to have their
cause presented to the public by this
gifted man.
Capital Beach will be opened on
Memorial Day. and Manager Buckstaff
says he is going to make the season
so much better than last year that
there will be no comparison. Now, if
he can only get decent and adequate
transportation facilities to the Beach
he will have a winner. Lincoln needs
something like that, and Manager
Buckstaff deserves liberal patronage.
It is developing into one of the finest
pleasure resorts in the west, and
above all it is being conducted along
clean lines. No man need fear to
send his wife and babies out there for
the day and wait until he can get in
a day's work and hike out there for
for supper and an evening of restful
Of course the Lincoln Star sees in
the deputy labor commissioner's de
mand Tor the union label on his print
ing a deep, dark plot to work up a po
litical deal. The esteemed Star can
see lots of things that never existed.
The deputy labor commissioner is de
manding he label on the printing of
his department tor the simple reason
that he wants only first-class work
and if it goes to a union shop he won't
have to lay awake nights worrying
about the kind ot a Job of printing he
is going to get tor the state's money.
That's all there is to it. the esteemed
Star to the contrary notwithstanding.
The baseball season was opened
with eclat whatever that is last
Wednesday afternoon. And the home
team hammered out a substantial vic
tory. It must have rejoiced the heart
The Labor Movement in Europe
It was a privilege to meet
such a distinct impression upon
of Europe- On a number of occasions I had "tea" in the House
of Commons with some of the labor members. One afternoon I
pent an hour or more discussing Enelish and American trades
unionism with about a dozen of the leaders, among them being
Arthur Henderson, M. P.. the chairman of the labor party iu par
liament: J. Ramsay Maedouald M. P.. secretary of the labor party;
D. J. Shackleton. M. P., chairman
Will Steadman. L. P.. secretary
Harrv Gosling, member of the
Trades Union Congress and member of the London County Council ;
George Nickolls, M. P., and Will Crooks, it. P. I also met many
of the labor officials who are- at the head of national organizations.
several of them having been fraternal delegates to the convention
of the American Federation of
The thing that impressed me
the fact that trades unionists, particularly in England, have de
veloped a comnanv of specialists who direct them in their efforts
to secure special legislation in parliament or in obtaining conces
sions from their employers. . In such matters as child labor, old
age pensions, woman's place in the state and in industry, in
educational questions, and iu temperance, the British leaders have
few superiors in any walk of life. In many cases they are the
authorities on these subjects. Organized labor in Europe has
learned the value of retaining the services of their leaders long
enough to utilize the experience which they have obtained as stu
dents of industrial problems. A labor leader on the other side
seems to make a profession of his business, which is at it should
be. The result has been that labor leaders abroad, as a class, are
more effective in legislative matters than are the labor leaders in
America. True enough, they have been longer confronted by
industrial problems, and having studied them more diligently in
the necessity of the case, they have become experienced in these
of Manager Green when he looked
around and about him and saw noth
ing but people. They filled the grand
stand, overflowed the bleachers, and
made a fringe of humanity three
fourths of the way around the fence.
And it is well that it is so. Colonel
Green is just the kind of a good fel
low that we like to see lugging off
the money. Quiet, gentlemanly, always
seeking to give his patrons the best,
he is furnishing Lincoln with a sport
free from rowdyism and spectacles
calculated to remind one of Coney
Island in the old days.
Governor Shallenberger pitched the
first bail of the season, and Mayor
Love gave an imitation of a man try
ing to catch it. We are frank to say
that Mr. Love can easily make a bet
ter mayor than he ever will make a
catcher. He called the mayor into
close conference before he pitched
his first curve up and then down.
Then he assumed the correct position,
jammed the ball into the palm of his
good right hand, and swung his arm
gracefully but forcefully. It had such
a wide curve the ball, not the guber
natorial arm that it deceived the
city's chief executive who peered
through the meshes of Jimmie Sulli
van's mask, and plunked up against
the grand stand with a sound akin to
that made by a fat man stumbling
over a row of glass fruit Jars. Then
the governor and the mayor graceful
ly doffed their caps to the shrieking
multitude and perambulated to the
And the season was opened.
By the way. the Lincoln team looks
good to the old timer who wields this
State Federation Meeting
Has your local a delegate to represent it at the meet
ing called for the purpose of organizing a State Federa
tion of Labor? If not, why not?" -.It is entitled to one
and it should elect one. You need the Federation; the
Federation needs you. Every local union, every central
labor union, every Federal labor union all are entitled
to one delegate each at the initial meeting.
Lincoln, June 21,22-Do Not Forget
Those are the dates, that's the place. , Now is the
time to get busy and get in line with the progressive
workers of other states. The meeting will be a success
without you, but it will be a bigger success if you are on
hand in the person of a duly accredited delegate. Lots
'of things that need to be done that cannot be done with
out organization. It will be a meeting of business not
a "joust"
the labor leaders who have made
the political and economic lite
of the Trades I mon Congress ;
of the Trades Union Congress;
parliamentary committee of the
most in talking with the men was
trenchant typewriter. And the grounds
they are a dream of baseballistic'
beauty. ' Sodded diamond, enlarged1
bleachers and grand stand, better en
trances and exits say, it's all right,
bo! And here's hoping that the
"Greenbackers," or the "Prohibs," just
as you please to have it, will set a
pace that will make "em all go some
to keep in sight.
The handsomest church edifice in
Lincoln the First Christian church
will be dedicated Sunday morning. If
you do not feel that you must go to
church somewhere else, just attend
these dedicatory services, see a
church building that doesn't run to
steeples, hear one ot the greatest pul
pit orators in America, F. M. Rains,
and get some inspiration to start on
the week with the" determination to
do a little more in the service of
youa fellows.
"I -hear you are taking a lot of in
terest in your new home."
"That's a mistake I'm paying in
terest." MaVtte you think this is a joke.
The Wood, Wire and Metal Lathers'
Union of Lincoln has served notice
that "after June 1 they will charge 3
1-2 cents per yard. This is one of
Lincoln's smallest unions, measured
by membership, but it seems well able
to take care of itself.
In the meantime, when you think of
it and yon ought to think of it all
the time just insist upon having the
union label on the goods you buy.
matters- There is a solidity in their characters which must im
press even an ordinary observer. As a class they are modest
and unassuming. Their moral standing is fully as high as the
average member of parliament in some respects it is very ranch
higher. Aspnblic speakers they are everywhere in demand and.
on the whole, they speak more interestingly than the average
platform man.
In Germany there are a number of women "labor leaders" who
are doinsr verv effective service. I was particularly impressed with
thir i-o finl manners and the
seemed to possess concerning not only the various aspects of the
- . . . - . . . - r -i- -v. k.v i ,t.
industrial problem m Germany, but their familiarity with the labor
' . - x 1 1 4. . I. . :
situation mruuiiiiuui mc runic
in Germany, practically all ot the leaders among tne women are
socialists. Ilerr Bebe!, leader of the socialists in the German reieh
stag. is not the aggressive-looking individual that I expected to
find. He is a quiet, unassuming, rather under-sized man, who is
thoroughly familiar with the political situation. On the day that I
attended the reichstag, the question - under consideration was the
banking system of Germany, and it was amazing to find the labor
ing men in the German congress holding their own against the .lead
ing financiers of the world upon a subject with which they are not
supposed to be very familiar.
France naturally produces a radical type of leader in the labor
movement, although the men who are at the head of the bona fide
trades union propaganda impressed me as being fairly conservative
as conservatism goes in sunny France. There is no doubt that
the radical leaders of labor in France are doing the cause of organ
ized labor great injury.
In Scotland and Ireland, the leaders have the characteristic
which is quite common in the rank and file, that of "heckling"
the speaker, which is what one would expect from an Irishman or
a Scotchman. As a matter of fact, some of the most interesting
experiences which I had during my trip were had in these latter
Labor Memorial Day
Was Fittingly Observed
As usual, a little handful of faithful
union men attended the '"Labor Mem
orial Service" at the First Baptist
church last Sunday evening. Of the
3,000 or 3.500 union men in Lincoln
perhaps ten or a dozen thought
enough of their dead comrades to
meet to pay a tribute of respect to
their memory.
Those who did attend the services
were privileged to hear two splendid
addresses, one by a fellow unionist,
C. H. Chase, and one by the pastor of
the First Baptist church. Rev. Sam
uel Zane Batten. Rev. Mr. Batten
is well known for his friendship for
organized labor and his outspoken
ness in favor of patronizing the u&ion
Mr. Chase was introduced by the
pastor as a workingman who followed
the same trade as that of the Carpen
ter of Nazareth, and Mr. Chase ehoss
as his subject the story of Cain and
Abel. "Am I my brother's keeper?"
asked- the speaker, quoting the words
of Cain. Then he quoted Matt Jew 22:
37-39 "Thou shalt love the Lord thy
God with all thy heart, and with all
thy soul, and with all thy mind. This
is the first and great commandment.
And the second is like unto it: thon
shalt love thy neighbor as thyself."
Continuing, Mr. Chase said:
"Four thousand years intervene be
tween these two events. Abel's death
was due to Cain's jealousy, or rather
Cain's selfishness, which up to that
time had no curb put upon it- A far
cry is this from Christ's setting out
of the two commandments to the
Pharisee lawyer which is such a
curb upon human selfishness. We are
nineteen hundred years from the sec
ond commandment, and human selfish
ness is still rampant in the world. It
is developed to the highest degree in
what is termed the higher walks of
life, where organizations are perfected
and kept up with a zeal worthy of a
better cause, for the sole purpose ot
the aggrandizement ot the promoters.
and at the expense of those less fav
vored. "Against this is set, as one factor in
the fight for better standards of liv
ing, the trades unions. These are
made np of human beings common
men and women many of them ignor
ant, many of them radical, who see
the .wrongs and seek to right them
all at once. From these come those
plagues of modern civilization, the
strikes and the boycott; and from
the other side the lock-out and the
blacklist. - From an unihought-of
source came the antidote for these ut-
mitigated evils that have been so
fearfully expensive, for in their last
Rev. Charles
intimate knowledge which they!
1 I , .. n-sw.l.l orniM.f trt Tl rt I 1
uuu. --- " .-.-...
analysis the cost is taxed Bp to the
wage earners."
At this point Mr. Chase entered ia-
to a history and a description of the
union label and what it stands for.
and urged his. hearers to help wage
the fight for sanitary conditions for
the workers, the abolition of child
labor and the sweat shop, fair wages
for fair work, by demanding the
union label upon all their purchases.
"This label system."' concluded Mr.
Chase, "is a peaceful protest against
the greed of grasping exploiters of
human labor."
Rev. Mr. Batten dwelt at length no
on the likeness of the aims of the
church and the trades anion, and
urged a closer working relation be
tween them. He told of his many
minglings with the delegates to the
Central Labor Union, and spofre high
ly of the men he met there, character
izing them as earnest, thoughtful men
who were striving to secure better
conditions for themselves and their
families. He spoke of the evils of
the sweat shop, and emphasized Mr.
Chase's remarks about the true mean
ing of the union labeL It was a
thoughtful, scriptural sermon that
rang true, and its essence was as
fine a union labor appeal as was ever
hArd in Lincoln. It is to be re
gretted that the church was not filled
to its utmost capacity by trades unioo-
ists. There are hundreds of them, fa
this good old town who know a whole
lot less about the labor movement
and the true meaning of the anion
label than this minister of the gospeL
Those who heard Rev. Mr. Batten's
sermon will remember it, and they
will always entertain for him a feef
ing of deep gratitude for his splendid
tribute to organized labor.
Special music was rendered by tae
quartette, and this was a most pleas
ing feature of the evening's services.
Annual Election Takes Place on May
19 and Things Warming Us.
The annual election of Liaeoia Ty
pographical Union No. 2' win be held
on the afternoon of May 15. from 12
till 7 o'clock. The election wis be by
Australian ballot and held at tae of
fice of the Wood Prim; in Co,
Eleventh and X streets, ia the base
ment. The chief interest is centered
around the office of deiegate. there be
ing two to elect and five candidates!.
The presidency and the make-? of
the executive committee are also
stirring up something of a friendly
scrap. F. H Hebbard has bo opposi
tion for re-election as secretary-creas-
The committee appointed to arrange
for a proper observance of -printers'
i Memorial Day has not yet eoarpieced
arrangements. It hopes to have every-
thing ready so the fu3 prtigraat cas
be given in next week's Wagsworker.
Join With Stage Hands in Putting mm
a Benefit Performance.
The two local organizations of thea
trical men in Lincoln wiU have a Joint
benefit at the Majestic on Wednesday
afternoon. May 19. and they say it is
going to be the biggest tai&g taat
er happened ia theatrical circles ia.
They ought .to know, farther
I are mixed np wita things taeatrical a3
j A,. t!je artist3 who are in the ei:y
that day will contribute to the pro
gram, and as there are some bia
"headliners"" dated for Liaeoia tia:
week the program promises to he
something different. The perforo
ers always do a Gttie better taaa taeir
best when they appear is a beneSt
for the boys who set the stage and
build the scenery. If yon want to see
the best in things theatrical yow wI
also have the satisfaction of know
ing that yoa are helping; as fine a
bunch of wage earners as ever carried
union cards and "come across"" when
a fellow worker was ia need of assis
tance. GOING SOME.
During January the Iatersatiosal
Typographical Union paid fifty death
benefits. It has 320S9. ia its treas
ury and !16.44.1S ia the old-sge pen
sion fund.