American Labor Unions

Courtney Clements

John D. Rockefeller

John D. Rockefeller formed the Standard Oil Company in 1870 in Ohio. Ohio was in the region where most of the countries oil was so his company quickly grew. Standard Oil went into collusion with the South Improvement Company which allowed Standard Oil to get reduced shipping cost for railroad travel. Soon this was found out and Standard Oil's shipping cost returned to normal. In order to make a high profit after this unfolded, Rockefeller began horizontal integration, and his company soaked up 22 of his 26 oil competitors. Rockefeller's company increased antitrust talks and he formed his own monopoly.

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Knights of Labor

The Knights of Labor was a labor organization that started in the 1870's. The organization often acted as a labor union where it would negotiate with business leaders and try to have an input on industry rules. The Knights of Labor were never very successful due to their lack of organization. Their legacy includes bringing music into the industry world.

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Pullman, Illinois

Pullman, Illinois is a neighborhood in Chicago that was built in the 1880's by George Pullman for his workers in his huge railroad company. The neighborhood was fully functional for all his workers. Pullman was very proud of it. At first, the workers were very happy with their accommodations but soon Pullman started enforcing laws for the small district and the residents weren't happy with their lack of freedom. They also soon became outraged as the depression began in the 1890's which led to people either being asked to move out or pay for the homes themselves.

Haymarket Square Riot of 1886

The Haymarket Square Riot is the name given to a small massacre that took place on May 4th, 1886. A peaceful labor demonstration was going on but still police officers tried to shut it down. An angry attendee got mad and threw a bomb at the police. Madness broke out and gunshots rang out leaving 7 dead and many others wounded all because of discussion on labor rights.

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Todays Labor Unions

Labor Unions today are much less diverse as they used to be as today only a couple different labor union organizations exist but are spaced out all over the country. Many people try to get rid of the unions as they blame them for some of the money problems America has had in recent year. People in labor unions are much more likely to have job security and a higher income than those who aren't in labor unions.

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