ACWA Rochester Joint Board Minutes of Meeting on Microfilm

Collection Number: 5273 mf

Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, Cornell University Library


DESCRIPTIVE SUMMARY

Title:
ACWA Rochester Joint Board Minutes of Meeting on Microfilm, 1919-1966
Collection Number:
5273 mf
Creator:
Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America (ACWA);
ACWA Rochester Joint Board
Quantity:
3 microfilm reels
Forms of Material:
Broadsides (notices), minutes (administrative records), microfilm.
Repository:
Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, Cornell University Library
Abstract:
Social and political issues of concern to the Joint Board as reflected in the minutes include relations with the Socialist Party, the imprisonment of Tom Mooney, the movement to create a Farmer-Labor Party, the plight of immigrants, economic downturns and the execution of Sacco and Vanzetti. The Board supported Jewish charities, aid to Russia and various anti-fascist Italian movements. It also endorsed the La Follette-Wheeler ticket in the 1924 presidential campaign. The Joint Board opposed "class-collaborationism" as expressed in the B&O Plan, attacked "reactionary" labor leaders of the "Gompers and Lewis type," and called for the abolition of militarism.
Language:
Collection material in English


ORGANIZATIONAL HISTORY

The Joint Board of the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America coordinated union activities in the Rochester, N.Y. area.
In 1915, the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America (ACWA) embarked on a large-scale organizing drive in Rochester, N.Y. After four years of extensive organizing, the union succeeded in forcing the Rochester Clothiers' Exchange (the main organization of employers) into adopting a 44-hour workweek. By 1929, the union had succeeded in unionizing over 12,000 of Rochester's clothing workers.

COLLECTION DESCRIPTION

Consists of the minutes of the Rochester Joint Board from 1919 through 1932. The meetings are divided, for the most part, into the following sections: communications, bills, expenditures, financial statements, Board of Directors' reports, reports from affiliated locals, the manager's reports, education committee reports, grievance committee reports, and outside committee reports.
Beyond the usual issues of collective bargaining, wages, grievances, strikes, organizing campaigns, local union administration and economic conditions in the clothing industry which are addressed throughout these minutes, much space is given to the Joint Board's response to contemporary social and political issues. National and local union issues discussed that are of special interest include the needs of women workers in the garment industry (1919, 1925) and the election of a female business agent (1919, 1927), claims of discrimination in job placement by the union (1925), attempts by Italian union members to form a cooperative (1926), the "pernicious" effect of communist attacks on union leadership, the roots of factionalism in the Rochester Joint Board (1926-1929), and the issue of racketeering in the union (1932).
Rochester strikes discussed include the Off Pressers Strike and the Shop 5 Stein Block Sitdown Strike (1927) among others. Important strikes around the nation were often alluded to in the minutes, with the Joint Board offering moral support and occasional financial contributions to the relevant strike funds. Of special interest were the Buffalo Clothing Workers' Strike (1919), the United Shoe Workers' Strike (1922), the Paterson, N.J. Silk Workers' Strike (1924), the Syracuse, N.Y. Bakery Strike (1925) and several strikes in 1926, including those of the United Mine Workers and the United Shoe Workers as well as the Passaic, N.J. General Strike.
Social and political issues of concern to the Joint Board as reflected in the minutes include relations with the Socialist Party, the imprisonment of Tom Mooney, the movement to create a Farmer-Labor Party, the plight of immigrants, economic downturns and the execution of Sacco and Vanzetti. The Board supported Jewish charities, aid to Russia and various anti-fascist Italian movements. It also endorsed the La Follette-Wheeler ticket in the 1924 presidental campaign. The Joint Board opposed "class-collaborationism" as expressed in the B&O Plan, attacked "reactionary" labor leaders of the "Gompers and Lewis type," and called for the abolition of militarism.
The minutes also record speeches by Jean Longuet, Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, and Roger Baldwin.
SUBJECTS

Names:
Baldwin, Roger N. q (Roger Nash), d 1884-1981.
Flynn, Elizabeth Gurley.
La Follette, Robert M. q (Robert Marion), d 1895-1953.
Longuet, Jean.
Mooney, Thomas J., d 1882-1942.
Sacco, Nicola, d 1891-1927.
Vanzetti, Bartolomeo, d 1888-1927
Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America.
Farmer-Labor Party.
Socialist Party (U.S.)
United Shoe Workers of America.

Subjects:
Bakery Strike, Syracuse, N.Y., 1925.
Clothing Workers' Strike, Buffalo, N.Y., 1919.
General Strike, Passaic, N.J., 1926.
Italian Americans-- New York (State)-- Rochester.
Off Pressers' Strike, Rochester, N.Y., 1927.
Presidents-- United States -- Election-- 1924.
Racketeering -- United States.
Sacco-Vanzetti case.
Sex discrimination in employment-- United States.
Silk Workers' Strike, Paterson, N.J., 1924.
Stein Block Sitdown Strike, Rochester, N.Y., 1927
Labor unions --New York (State) -- Rochester -- Political activity.
Labor unions and communism --United States.
Labor unions and fascism -- Italy.
Labor unions and foreign policy -- United States.
United Mine Workers' Strike, United States, 1926.
United Shoe Workers' Strike, United States, 1922.
United Shoe Workers' Strike, United States, 1926.
Women in trade-unions --United States.
Clothing workers -- New York (State)

Form and Genre Terms:
Broadsides (notices)
Minutes (administrative records)
Microfilm.


INFORMATION FOR USERS

Access Restrictions:
Access to the collections in the Kheel Center is restricted. Please contact a reference archivist for access to these materials.
Restrictions on Use:
This collection must be used in keeping with the Kheel Center Information Sheet and Procedures for Document Use.
Cite As:
ACWA Rochester Joint Board Minutes of Meeting on Microfilm #5273 mf. Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, Cornell University Library.

RELATED MATERIALS

Related Collections:
5285 mf: ACWA Rochester Joint Board Scrapbooks on Microfilm
5287: ACWA. Rochester Joint Board. Papers [Deaccessioned]
5993 mf: ACWA Rochester Joint Board Minutes on Microfilm
5273: ACWA Rochester Joint Board Records

CONTAINER LIST

Container
Description
Reel 1
Negative
Reel 2
Negative
Reel 3
Negative