ILGWU. Local 226 Records,1946-1973.

Collection Number: 5780/132

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


DESCRIPTIVE SUMMARY

Title:
ILGWU. Local 226 records, 1946-1973.
Collection Number:
5780/132
Creator:
International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union. Local 226
Quantity:
1 linear foot
Forms of Material:
Records
Repository:
Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, Cornell University Library
Abstract:
Contains records of Local 226, including agreements with area companies, as well as correspondence with those companies and union members. Also included are periodicals from several district councils in New England and Pennsylvania: Southern New England District News, Seamlines (Upstate New York and Vermont District), Garment Square Chronicle (Southern New England District), Needle News (Allentown-Reading District), and Needlepoint (Wilkes-Barre-Pittston-Nanticoke District).
Language:
Collection material in English


ILGWU ORGANIZATIONAL HISTORY

The International Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union was founded in New York City in 1900 by mostly Socialist immigrant workers who sought to unite the various crafts in the growing women's garment industry. The union soon reflected changes in the sector and rapidly organized thousands of unskilled and semi-skilled women, mostly Jewish and Italian young immigrants. Exemplifying the “new unionism,” the ILGWU led two of the most widespread and best-known industrial strikes of the early Twentieth Century: the shirtwaist makers’ strike of 1909 in New York City and the cloak makers’ strike of 1910 in Chicago. The union also tried to adapt to the fragmented and unstable nature of the industry. It adopted the “protocol of peace,” a system of industrial relations that attempted to ensure stability and limit strikes and production disruption by providing for an arbitration system to resolve disputes.
The ILGWU exemplified the European-style social unionism of its founding members. They pursued bread and butter issues but provided educational opportunities, benefits, and social programs to union members as well. In 1919, the ILGWU became the first American union to negotiate an unemployment compensation fund that was contributed to by its employers. The ILGWU also pioneered in the establishment of an extremely progressive health care program for its members which included not only regional Union Health Centers but also a resort for union workers, known as Unity House. The Union also had an imaginative and pioneering Education Department which not only trained workers in traditional union techniques, but provided courses in citizenship and the English language.
David Dubinsky, an immigrant from Belarus who came to the US in 1911, provided strong leadership that led to unprecedented growth in the union during his presidency from 1932 to 1966. He led the union through successful internal anti-communist struggles, built on the ascendancy of industrial unionism by encouraging the formation of the Committee for Industrial Organization, and helped the union become an important political force in New York City and state politics, and in the national Democratic Party and Liberal Party as well.
In the period following the Second World War, the union suffered a decline in membership as manufacturers avoided unionization and took advantage of less expensive labor by moving shops from the urban centers in the northeast to the south, and later abroad. The ethnic and racial character of the ILGWU also changed as European immigrants were supplanted by Asians, Latin Americans, African- Americans, and immigrants from the Caribbean.
In July 1995 the ILGWU merged with the Amalgamated Clothing and Textile Workers Union (ACTWU) at a joint convention, forming UNITE (Union of Needletrades, Industrial and Textile Employees). At the time the new union had a membership of about 250,000 in the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico.

ORGANIZATIONAL HISTORY

Local 226 of the International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union (ILGWU) was based in Springfield, Massachusetts.

COLLECTION DESCRIPTION

Contains records of Local 226, including agreements with area companies, as well as correspondence with those companies and union members. Also included are periodicals from several district councils in New England and Pennsylvania: Southern New England District News, Seamlines (Upstate New York and Vermont District), Garment Square Chronicle (Southern New England District), Needle News (Allentown-Reading District), and Needlepoint (Wilkes-Barre-Pittston-Nanticoke District).
SUBJECTS

Names:
International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union.
International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union.
International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union. Local 226

Subjects:
Women's clothing industry--United States.
Labor unions--Clothing workers--United States.
Clothing workers--United States.
Industrial relations--United States.

Form and Genre Terms:
Records.


INFORMATION FOR USERS

Access Restrictions:
The ILGWU Records, except for publications and materials produced for publication, are restricted. Materials created prior to twenty years from the current date are open to researchers only with prior written permission from the Director of the Kheel Center; materials created during the past twenty-years are closed; the minutes of the General Executive Board are closed. For more information contact the Kheel Center.
Cite As:
ILGWU. Local 226 records. 5780/132. Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, Martin P. Catherwood Library, Cornell University.

RELATED MATERIALS

5780. ILGWU records

NOTES

"Permanent deposit"

CONTAINER LIST

Container
Description
Date
Box 1 Folder 1
Southern New England District News
1959
October
Box 1 Folder 2
Aaron Dress Company
1943-1960
Box 1 Folder 3
Barton Tailoring Company
1941-1948
Box 1 Folder 4
Sam J. Belsky, Incorporated
1961-1970
Box 1 Folder 5
Burnette Corporation
1945-1950
Box 1 Folder 6
Campus Girl, Incorporated
1959-1961
Box 1 Folder 7
Cromwell Manufacturing Company
1969
Box 1 Folder 8
Cromwell Mills, Incorporated
1966-1973
Box 1 Folder 9
Desley Fabrics Company
1958-1969
Box 1 Folder 10
Flair Fashions
1967-1968
Box 1 Folder 11
M. Freed and Sons, Incorporated
1944-1951
Box 1 Folder 12
Glernap
1953
Box 1 Folder 13
Huntington Fashions
1964-1965
Box 1 Folder 14
Julson Manufacturing Company, Incorporated
1958-1966
Box 1 Folder 15
Junior Miss Lingerie
1951-1956
Box 1 Folder 16
Ken Whitemore, Incorporated
1958-1970
Box 1 Folder 17
Kestral Corporation
1951-1965
Box 1 Folder 18
M. G. Kinser Company
1938-1951
Box 1 Folder 19
Knit Goods Specialty Company
1958-1961
Box 1 Folder 20
Madelle Corporation, Incorporated
1966
Box 1 Folder 21
Malone Knitting Company
1958-1964
Box 1 Folder 22
National Transparent Plastics Company
1953
Box 1 Folder 23
New England Manufacturing Company
1960-1966
Box 1 Folder 24
Orange Garment Manufacturing Company, Incorporated
1960-1965
Box 1 Folder 25
Pioneer Valley Plastics Company
1956
Box 1 Folder 26
Powdrell and Alexander
1947-1951
Box 1 Folder 27
Rainbow Girl Coat
1951
Box 1 Folder 28
I. L. Strick Company
1941-1950
Box 1 Folder 29
S. G. Winer Company
1965-1967
Box 1 Folder 30
Trencher, Incorporated
1961-1964
Box 1 Folder 31
Victory Dress Company
1958-1967
Box 1 Folder 32
Whitley Tailleurs
1961-1964
Box 1 Folder 33
The William Carter Company
1965-1967
Box 1 Folder 34
Young and Trim Coat Company
1961
Box 1 Folder 35
Seamlines
1959-1961
June 1959 - November 1961
Box 1 Folder 36
Education
1961
Box 1 Folder 37
Garment Square Chronicle
1959-1961
December 1959 - June 1961
Box 1 Folder 38
Needle News
1960-1961
September 1960 - December 1961
Box 1 Folder 39
Needlepoint
1959-1961
February 1959 - August 1961