Please use the underlined links to read through the other history pages on this site
1170 BC 11/23 First recorded strike (in Egypt)
1526,3/22 First American slave revolt
1542,6-7: Luis Moscoso from DeSoto's expedition cross part of Dallas County
1581 First Europeans reach El Paso Del Norte
1590 The term "scab" is in use
1600,2/17 Giordano Bruno stripped, gagged, and burned to death in Rome for
suggesting that the Earth might not be the center of the universe
1633,6/22 Galileo forced to disavow Copernican theory. In legend, he said, "It still moves!"
1642,1/8 Death of Galileo Galilei
1732,2/22 George Washington born
1737,1/29 Birth of Thomas Paine, pamphleteer of the American Revolutoin
1770,3/5 Crispus Attucks, a free Black man, is first casualty of American revolution
1776,1/10 Thomas Paine's "Common Sense" published
1778 Printers in New York won increase in wages, but abandoned their organization after they won
1783,9/3 U.S. Revolution won; peace treaty signed with England
1786 Philadelphia printers conduct first American authenticated strike. They won minimum wage of $6/week
1791, 5/ "…the carpenters mounted America's first 10-hour day strike in May, 1791."
For more on shortening the working day click here
1791,12/15 Bill of Rights in U.S. Constitution
1792 Philadelphia shoemakers organize craft union, but disbanded in less than a year
1794 Federal Society of Journeymen Cordwainers (shoemakers) lasted until 1806,
when it was tried and fined for conspiracy
1798,3/1 First strike, printers
1800,5/9 John Brown born
1803,11/18 Haitians defeat Napolean’s army in Battle of Vertieres
1804,1/1 Haiti declares independence and emancipation. Boycotts and ostracizing from
U.S. and Europe begin
1805 New York Cordwainers form union and demand a closed shop
1806 Philadelphia Journeymen Cordwainers bankrupted by "conspiracy" fine
1809,2/12 President Lincoln born
1818: Caddos drive Cherokees toward East Texas after battle near 3 forks of the Trinity (formerly Arkikosa) River
1818,2/12 Frederick Douglass born in 1818
1820,2/15 Susan B Anthony Birthday
1820,3/8 Harriet Tubman born. Later declared Int'l women's day
1825,4/27 Boston Carpenters strike for 10-hour day
1825 New York women form union, The United Tailoresses of New York
1827,8/24 First U.S. labor newspaper published
1827 First Black-owned newspaper published
1827 Mechanics' Union of Trade Associations formed from various crafts
1828 Workingmen's Party, including workers, craftsmen and farmers, formed in Philadelphia. Lasted until 1832
1828,11/28 William Silvus born. Click here
1830,5/1 Mother Jones born
1830,5/28 Cherokee removal
1834 James Walker Fanin moves to Texas and agitates for break with Mexico. Made his living as slave trader
1834 National Trades' Union formed in New York. First attempt at national labor federation failed in financial panic of 1837
1835,7/3 Children strike in Patterson, NJ for 11 hour day & 6 day week
1835,11/1 1st general strike for 10 hour day, Philadelphia PA
1836, ? Sam Houston and Cherokee Chief Bowls agree that tribe will not support Mexican
government in exchange for guaranteed land
1836, 3/2 Texas declared independence from Mexico. Slavery established
1838,4/ First known Texas union started. Also first strike in Texas
1839,6/30 Cinque led successful slave revolt on the Amistad. There's a good movie named "Amistad"
1840,3/31 "President Martin Van Buren issued a broadly-applicable executive order granting
the ten-hour day to all those government employees engaged in manual labor."
1841: John Neely Bryan establishes trading post on Trinity River (Dallas)
1842, Spring The Beeman family moved from Bird’s Fort to John Neely Bryan’s
trading post on the Trinity River. Eventually, they named it Dallas. Click here
1842 Commonwealth v. Hunt case legalized unions and said they were not conspiracies
1843,6/1 Soujourner Truth born
1843 Galveston News established to support Mirabeau Lamar for President of Texas
1843 Texas signs peace treaty with natives
1844 First Native American-owned newspaper published
1846? Lamar orders genocide in Texas. Cherokees driven off their land in East Texas
1847, 7/17 "Communistic" settlers of Bettina landed at Galveston.
Their attempt to run a utopian society only lasted one year
1847 New Hampsire became first state to pass a 10-hour day law
1848 Pennsylvania passed first child labor law. Workers had to be at least twelve!
1848 Democrat Lewis Cass gets most Texas votes for President, 10,688
1848,6/24 Albert Parsons born in Alabama
1848, Women gathered at Seneca Falls, NY, for program of emancipation
1849: Dallas Herald begun under original name Cedar Snag
1850: Dallas beats out Hords Ridge to become County Seat. County population 2,743. Town population 430.
1850-1856 Large numbers of progressive Germans and other Europeans begin to emigrate to Texas.
Among them is Otto Meitzen
1852, Democrat Franklin Pierce gets most Texas votes for President, 13,552
1852 First enduring union, Typographers, formed. Women's working hours limited to 10/day
1853, 1/28 Jose Marti, Cuban revolutionary, born
1853, 5/27: Jane Elkins is first woman officially hanged in Texas. Hanged on site of present "Old Red Courthouse" in Dallas. For more click here.
1854: La Reunion socialist community established just west of Dallas
1855,11/5 EV Debs born
1856, Andre Douai and other abolitionists driven out of Texas
1856, Democrat James Buchanan gets most Texas votes for President, 31,169
1856, 9/6 Tejanos attacked for trying to free slaves in Colorado County
1857, Judge Taney ruled that fugitive slave Dred Scott had no rights in America
1859, 7/13 Beginning of Juan Cortino insurgency near Brownsville
1860 Carpenters Local#7 formed in Galveston. Longest uninterrupted union local in Texas.
1860 Democrat John Breckinridge gets most Texas votes for US President, 47,548
1860, 7/8 Fire in downtown Dallas
1860,7/24 Dallas lynchings and beatings. For Texas labor history before Civil War, click here
1861 Texas votes to secede from the union. 19 counties oppose, including most of Hill Country and North Texas. Vote in Dallas: 741-237 to secede
1861, 4, Tejanos in Zapata County massacred by Confederates
1861,8/10 "Battle of Nueces" Texas Germans slaughtered while trying to get to Mexico. For this period, click here.
1862, October. 41 civilians hanged in Gainesville, 2 others shot, on suspicion of supporting the North. Click here
1862 Irish miners organized to improve conditions as "Molly Maguires." Pinkerton agency infamous for getting 10
of them hanged and 14 imprisoned in 1876
1862,2/4 Bill Bill Haywood born
1863 Brotherhood of Locmotive Engineers founded
1863,1/1 African American Emancipation
1864,5/5 Cinco de Mayo Mexican Holiday celebrating defeat of imperialist invaders in Battle of Puebla
1864,9/28 International Workingmen's Assn founded 1865,4/9 Lee Surrenders to Grant
1865,6/19 Texas African Americans learn they have been emancipated. "Juneteenth"
1865-1873: The horrors of Reconstruction in the South
1865,9/16 Mexican Independence Day 1865, 12/18 13th amendment against slavery ratified. Texas passes new laws allowing convict labor and executions
1866, 8 National Labor Union, the first national labor federation in America, formed. For info, click here
1867 Knights of St Crispin founded to try to stop automation in the shoe industry. Lasted until 1878
1868,2/23 W.E.B. DuBois born 1868 Certain federal workers get 8-hour law
1868,12/31 End of Texas Freedmen's Bureau
1868: Ku Klux Klan formed
1869, 1/6 First African American labor convention
1869,7/27 William Sylvus died. Click here
1869,12/26 Noble Order of the Knights of Labor founded as secret society in Philadelphia
1870 Houston & Texas Central Railroad decides to come through Dallas after receiving $5000 and 115 acres of land
1870 Texas re-admitted to United States
1870, 7/29 Coal miners win first contract
1871 Paris Commune drowned in blood
1872,? Paul Quinn Negro University begun in Waco
1872 Democrat Horace Greeley gets most Texas votes for President with 66,546
1873,2/22 Dallas gets Texas & Pacific Railroad
1873 Heinrich Schwartz arrived in Hempstead to become first ordained Rabbi in Texas
1873: Club Recipropo, an Hispanic mutual aid society, formed in Corpus Christi
1874,1/13 Tompkins Square massacre
1874 Cigar makers in San Francisco originate "union label"
1875, May: Jefferson Davis speaks to an enthusiastic crowd at McCoy Grove, Dallas
1876 Kate Richards [later O’Hare] born in Kansas
1876 Outlaw Belle Starr establishes a livery stable in downtown Dallas
1876 Democrat Samuel Tilden gets most Texas votes for U.S. President with 104,755
1876,1/12 Jack London born
1877,6/21 10 miner activists called "Molly Maguires" and hanged in Pennsylvania
1877, 7/24 Federal troops used to violently suppress national railroad strike
1877: Dallas approves public school funds
1878, 12/12 Jane McManus Storm Cazneau drowned. She advocated emancipation of Texas slaves and annexation by the U.S.
1878 Greenback-Labor Party organized
1879,3/14 Albert Einstein born
1879,8/8 Emiliano Zapata born
1879,10/7 Joe Hill born
1880, 6/27 Helen Keller born
1880 Winfield Hancock, Democrat, gets most Texas votes for President, 156,428 1880’s Knights of labor formed five district assemblies with 30,000 members in Texas
1881 Knghts of Labor organizes unions in Dallas
1881 Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions (FOTLU) organized. In 1886, it became AFL
1882, Sept: Knights of Labor organized in Dallas with several locals
1882,?: Galveston Screwmen Strike to preserve racism on the job. Click here.
1882,4/3: Jesse James shot dead
1882, Sept: First Labor Day in New York
1883: First union strike in Dallas. Railway workers walked out
1883, 11/23 Sugar workers massacred near Thibodeaux, Louisiana
1883, 3/31 Cowboys strike in Texas Panhandle. Click here.
1883 Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen organized
1884 Democrat Grover Cleveland gets most Texas votes for U.S. President with 225,309
1884 Bureau of Labor established in the Department of Interior
1885: Farmers' Alliance formed National HQ at Jefferson, Market and Wood in downtown Dallas
1885: 10/1 First edition of Dallas Morning News. Col A.H. Belo had moved to Dallas from Galveston
1885 Unions struck over use of slave convict labor in building the state capitol. Click here.
1885 Knights of Labor under Martin Irons successfully struck Jay Gould Railroad line
1886,3/1 In Sherman, Knights of Labor under Martin Irons again decides to strike Great Southwest Railway against Jay Gould. After much bloodshed, they lose this one and the Knights go into decline. For more info, click here
1886, 12/11: A small group of black farmers organize the Colored Farmers’ National Alliance and Cooperative Union in Houston County, Texas.
They had been barred from membership in the all-white Southern Farmers’ Alliance. Through intensive organizing, along with merging with another
black farmers group, the renamed Colored Alliance by 1891 claimed a membership of 1.2 million
1886: Manuel Lopez delivered the concluding speech in Spanish at the Knights of Labor Texas state convention in San Antonio 1886,5/1 Mayday. Nationwide strike for 8-hour day. For Texas history of the period, click here.
1886,5/4 Haymarket massacre 1886, 10- Knights of Labor defied segregation laws during convention in Richmond
1886,12/8 AF of L formed from FOTLU (1881)
1887: Dallas Typographical Union 173 gets the first "closed shop" contract in Dallas
1887,8/24 National Association of Letter Carriers formed
1887,10/4 African American sugar workers went on strike to gain a one dollar per day wage increase in Louisiana. The Louisiana Militia, along with numerous prominent "owners," shot at least 35 unarmed workers. They then lynched two strike leaders in front of the town. Massacre in Thibodeaux area around November 23.
1887,10/20 John Reed born
1887,11/11 Haymarket martyrs hanged in Chicago
1888 Democrat Grover Cleveland gets most Texas votes for US President with 234,883, but Alson Streeter of the Union Labor party received 8.2%, 29,459
1888,11/23 Harpo Marx born
1888,9/2 Carl Brannin born in Cisco, TX (died in Dallas after lifetime of social activism)
1888 Texas State Capitol completed despite national boycott because convict labor was used
1889, April: East Dallas is annexed into Dallas
1889: Dallas gets electric streetcars
1889: 4/22 Oklahoma Land Rush
1889,4/16 A. Phillip Randolph born
1889, 7/14 Bastille Day begun when French revolutionaries stormed palace
1890, 1/25 United Mine Workers of America founded
1890,8/7 Helen Gurley Flynn born
1890 Dallas was merged with the City of East Dallas
1891 James Hogg is governor of Texas for 2 terms
1891, June: Oak Cliff incorporated as a separate town across the Trinity River from Dallas
1891 Texas craft unions try to organize at state level but fail
1892, June, Texas People’s Party founding convention in Dallas
1892 Democrat Grover Cleveland received most Texas votes for president with 239,148. But the People’s Party candidate, James Weaver, received 99,688!
1892,7/1 Homestead steel strike. 7 strikers & 3 Pinkertons killed
1892,7/12 Carnegie Steel strike broken by gunmen
1892,11/8 20,000 workers stage general strike in New Orleans
1893,5/13 Western Federation of Miners formed in Butte, Montana
1893, December, Blind Lemon Jefferson born in Couchman, near Wortham. Click here
1894,3/25 Coxey's Army set out to cross America
1894,5/11 Nationwide railway strike, led by Gene Debs, begins at Pullman
1894,6/28 Labor Day declared official US holiday
1894,9/3 National Association of Letter Carriers formed (NALC)
1896 Democrat William Bryan received most Texas votes for President, 370,434. He was endorsed by the Progressive Party. Texas delegates opposed
1896,5/18 Supreme Court approved racial segregations
1897,2 First movie shown in Dallas
1898 Texas Federation of Labor formed
1898,4/1 William Cowper Brann, editor, shot and killed in downtown Waco.
1898: UMWA wins 8-hour day
1898,4/9 Paul Robeson born
1898,10/28 2 miners killed in Virden, Il
1900 Hurricane wiped out Galveston
1900 Democrat William Jennings Bryan received most Texas votes for President, 267,432. Socialist Eugene Debs received 1,846 and Socialist Labor Party candidate Joseph Malloney received 162. The People’s Party ran Wharton Barker, who received 20,981.
1900,4/12 Florence Reese born. She wrote "Which Side Are You On?"
1900 AFL granted charters to city-central trade councils in Austin, Dallas, Sherman, Corsicana, Gainesville and Hillsboro. Membership was 8,475 1900 International Ladies Garment Workers Union begun. Presently part of UNITE-HERE!
1901 Spindletop strike near Beaumont starts Texas oil industry. For more on oil, click here
1901, 8/21 International Federation of Trade Unions formed. AFL was in and out of it till it died in 1945
1901,7/29 Founding of Socialist Party
1902, 10/3 Theodore Roosevelt became first president to mediate during a strike. Failed to settle coal strike
1903 Africa American cowboy Bill Pickett invented “bulldogging” at a Central Texas ranch
1903: Women's Trade Union League formed
1903,3/16 Oak Cliff residents vote to merge with Dallas
1903: UMWA wins strike in Thurber. Texas' most thoroughly union city formed (see 1920s also). Click here
1903: Theodore Roosevelt gave first presidential order prohibiting government employees from seeking wage increases by attempting to influence legislation
1904: Oak Cliff is annexed into Dallas
1904: "Laborer" published in Dallas. radical and pro-labor
1904 Democrat Alton Parker won most Texas votes for President, 167,200. But Eugene Debs won 2,791, and Thomas Watson of the Populist Party won 8,062. Charles Corregan of the Socialist Labor Party received 421
1904,10/4 The Colorado State Militia killed 6 striking miners, took 15 prisoner, and deported 79
1904, ? Houston Streetcar Conductors Strike. Click here.
1905 Federal Labor Union with almost all Hispanic members founded in Laredo
1905,6/27 Industrial Workers of the World organized in Chicago. For reading on IWW, click here.
1906,2/13 Victor Reuther born
1907: Highland Park is incorporated as a restrictive suburb inside Dallas
1907,9/1 Walter Reuther born. Would lead United Auto Workers
1907, 3/21 Cornerstone of Scottish Rite Cathedral laid in Dallas
1907, 3/31 "…the Flippen-Prather Realty Company announced the opening of the first 100 acres of Highland Park, a restricted residential suburban development"
1907, 3/4 "The Citizens Association came into being on March 4, 1907.... It was nothing short, The News believed, of the birth of the Greater Dallas movement.... On May 21, they won their first City elections.
1908, 5/25 Trinity River flooded Dallas
1908 William Bryan won most Texas votes for US President, 217,302. Debs won 7,870 or 2.7% while Thomas Watson of the People’s party won 994 and August Gillhaus of the Socialist Labor Party received 176
1908, 12/26 Jack Johnson of Galveston became first African American Heaveyweight Champion. Race riots resulted when he successfully defended the title against white challengers. He survived betrayal, scorn, and abuse until his death in 1946. In 1954, Jack Johnson was inducted into Boxing’s Hall of Fame
1908,12/23 AFL leaders found in contempt for promoting a boycott in the Buck’s Stove case. See Labor Law as History
1908 "Yellow Dog" contracts (prohibiting union joining) outlawed
1909,2/12 NAACP begun
1909,11/22 20,000 female garment workers on strike in New York
1909 Wilford B Smith moved to Dallas and published The Pitchfork until he died in 1939
1909: Texas Legislature defeats 8-hour day law by filibuster
1910: Airplane lands in Dallas
1910,3/3 Dallas crowd watches downtown lynching of Allen Brooks
1911,1/12 "Bread and Roses" strike in Lawrence until March 14
1911 Southern Methodist University begun in Dallas
1911,3/25 147 garment workers either burned to death or smashed into the pavement outside the Triangle Shirtwaist factory in New York
1911 Bucks Stove and Range Case stopped an AFL boycott
1911,4/11 Death of Chitto Harjo (Wilson Jones or Crazy Snake) and the end of Native American Resistance
1912 Woodrow Wilson, Democrat, received most Texas votes for U.S. President, 221,589 while Socialist Eugene Debs took 25,743 or 8.4%. He did even better in Oklahoma. Arthur Reimer of the Socialist Labor Party won 442
1912,2/24 Women and children textile strikers beaten by Lawrence, Massachusetts, police
1912,7/14 Woody Guthrie born in Okemah, Oklahoma
1912 Houston NAACP begins its proud history. For more info click here
1913 U.S. Dept of Labor, with Bureau of Labor Statistics, established by law
1913, 2/2 Denver free speech fight led by IWW
1913 El Paso smelter workers strike broken with violence by Texas Rangers
1913, 2/25: Patterson silk strike began
1913, 6/7: Patterson silk strike pageant in Madison Square Garden drew 150,000 attendees
1913,8/3 First agricultural workers strike at Durst Ranch in Wheatland, Calif. Click for more on agricultural workers
1914 Dallas chosen for site of Federal Reserve District 11
1914 Dallas’ Love Field begun as army air corps training base
1914 Houston Ship Channel opened
1914,1/5 Ford Motor Company raised wages to $5 for an 8-hour day to keep the unions out
1914,4/20 Ludlow massacre. For Texas history of the period, click here.
1914 E.R. Meitzen, Socialist candidate for Texas governor, makes his party the second largest in Texas
1914 Clayton Act gave unions, injunctions and pickets, some legal status
1915: SMU opened
1915,1/17 Ralph Chaplin publishes "Solidarity Forever". Lucy Parsons leads hunger march in Chicago
1915,11/19 Joe Hill executed in Utah
1916 Woodrow Wilson, Democrat, won 286,514 votes for President in Texas. Allan Benson of the Socialist Party won 18,969, or 5%
1916,9/2 Operating railway employees win 8-hour day under Adamson Act. "A giant victory for labor."
1916,9/5 Child Labor Law passed
1917, 4/17 Kate Richards O’Hare headed committee that drafted anti-war resolution for American Socialist Party
1917,6/6 Speculator mine disaster. 164 killed at Butte, Montana
1917, 7/12 1,186 miners deported from Bisbee Arizona into barren desert. "Yellow dog" contract upheld!
1917,8/1 Frank Little Lynched in Butte. For a review of a biography, click here. For more on Frank Little, click here .
1917,8/2 Greencorn Rebellion, in which Oklahoma sharecroppers attempted to overthrow the government
1917, 8/23 20 killed in battle between Houston police and Black soldiers in Houston
1917,11/1 Texas and Louisiana oilfield workers walk out 1917. Houston Oil companies break Texas strike to keep 12-hour, $3 day
1917, 11/7 Russian Revolution. The calendar they were using said it was in October
1918, beginning in January:"Spanish flu" kills millions
1918 Canadians win 8-hour day
1918, 6/16: Sedition Act of 1918 passed by Congress. Curtailed free speech
1918,10/6 First National Conference of Trade Union Women
1918,11/2 Priscilla Bell birthday. Died 2001. Click here
1918 AFL counts 512 affiliated locals in Texas
1918, 11- Pan-American Federation of Labor established in Laredo, Texas with AFL, to oppose communist influences from Europe
1918, 12/6: Federal government took control of all railroads until 1920
1919: Building Trades in North Texas strike in sympathy with Dallas Power & Light Company employees in spite of opposition from the AFL (see Dallas history by Patricia Evridge Hill)
1919, 5/24: National Executive Committee of Socialist Party, USA, began expelling militants. Membership was 104,000 but big falloff began
1919, 11/19 Texas Open Shop (anti-union) Association forms with center in Dallas
1919,2/6 Seattle General Strike began
1919,8/4 15,000 silk workers struck in Paterson NJ for 44 hour week.
1919, 8/1: Attorney General Palmer appoints J. Edgar Hoover to fight the "red scare."
1919, September: Socialist Party splits 3 ways with two factions supporting new Soviet Union. The movie "Reds" covers some of this
1919,9/30 African American sharecroppers in Elaine, Arkansas, hold a meeting to unionize. Up to 900 murdered
1919,11/11 Centralia, Washington, Massacre. 4 VFW killed, 8 IWW's jailed 25 to 40 years. Wesley Everest lynched
1919, 9/22 Great Steel Strike begun (See Brody's book)
1920, 1/20 Atty Gen Palmer arrests 4,000 foreign-born labor agitators. “Palmer Raids” against American workers are on!
1920,3/12 Longshoremen in Galveston join national walkout. Strike was defeated. Texas Legislature passed reactionary “Open Port Law,” which was declared unconstitutional in 1926
1920, 8/2 Pancho Medrano born in Dallas
1920: Texas women vote in their first presidential election
1920: Democrat James Cox won most Texas votes for President, 288,767 The “Black and Tan Republican” Party won 27,247. Socialist Eugene Debs won 8,121 or 1.7%
1920s 162 Mexican workers deported from Thurber "with acquiescence of union they had helped form."
1920,1/2: FBI seized labor leaders and union leaders as part of the "red scare."
1920,5/19 Matewan Massacre in SW Virginia. There is an excellent movie named "Matewan"
1920,8/18 19th amendment ratified. Women win vote
1920 (Late in year) Ku Klux Klan #66 organized in Dallas. Soon became the biggest Klan chapter in the United States
1921: Ku Klux Klan gains strength in Dallas
1921, 5/24 Two Italian activists, Sacco & Vanzetti, framed up for murder, eventually executed
1921,5/24 Dallas Morning News editorializes against Ku Klux Klan after big downtown rally
1921,5/31 More than 300 African Americans killed in Tulsa, Oklahoma
1921, Christmas week: E.V. Debs freed from prison without a pardon
1921: Kate Richards O’Hare freed. O'Hare led a "Children's Crusade" to get the Greencorn rebels and other anti-war activists out of prison
1922: Open Port Law used to break Houston strike of railroad shop workers
1922 Dallas city elections carried by Ku Klux Klan
1922, 11? Texas elected Earle B Mayfield, an admitted KKK member, to the U.S. Senate. Click here
1923: African American inventor Garrett A. Morgan installs the first traffic lights in Dallas or in the world
1923 2/8: Five African Americans electrocuted in Huntsville. Legal Texas lynching begins to replace illegal
1924: Communist Party begins to appear in Texas
1924: Daily Worker began publishing
1924: The first African American, Lovett Huey Fort-Whiteman, to get communist training in Russia was a man from Dallas
1924: Democrat John Davis won most Texas votes for President with 484,605 1924,? AFL Convention held in El Paso
1924,6/2: Native Americans granted U.S. citizenship
1924,6/14 children burned to death in IWW hall in San Pedro, California
1924,12/13 AFL President Samuel Gompers died in San Antonio after a meeting in Mexico
1925: Dallas Negro Chamber of Commerce (later Black Chamber) begun
1925,5/19: Malcolm X born
1926, 5/20: Railway Labor Act assured railroad unions the right to negotiate
1926 Oil money from Santa Rita strike begins funding Texas higher education
1926: Chuck Berry born
1927,3/31 Cesar Chavez born
1927, 6/26 miners struck in Bisbee, Arizona
1927,8/22 Sacco & Vanzetti executed
1927 Blind Lemon Jefferson of Dallas tops "race record" charts. Click here
1928 Republican Herbert Hoover won most Texas votes for President with 367,036. Socialist Norman Thomas won 722 and Communist William Z Foster won 209
1929,1/15 MLK born
1929,9/14 Ella Mae Wiggins murdered when her truckload of striking unionists ambushed by vigilantes during textile strike in Gastonia, NC. All arrested were acquitted
1929 Trade Union Unity League began pushing for industrial, instead of craft, union organizing
1930, 11: Metal Trades Department of the AFL endorsed demand for 5-hour day
1930: East Texas oil field boom begins
1930, 4/14 John Steinbeck published The Grapes of Wrath
1930: Catholic Workers Union formed for Hispanic agricultural workers in Crystal City
1930, 5/9 Sherman lynch mob burns all African American Business
1930,11/30 "Mother Jones" Mary Jones died
1931: Communists and other progressives hit some "hard traveling" during the depression. See Southern Worker archives
1931, 3/3 Davis-Bacon bill guaranteed “prevailing wage rate” on federal construction sites
1931,3/4: Two communists and an established attorney were kidnapped from the steps of the Dallas Police Department
1931,12/7 Hunger March on Washington
1932 Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow start 2-year crime spree in their home town of Dallas
1932 Democrat Franklin Roosevelt wins most Texas votes for President with 760,348. Communist William Foster won 207; Socialist Norman Thomas won 4,450
1932,3/7 Ford Hunger March. 5 killed near Detroit
1932 "Anti-injunction" Norris-LaGuardia Act prohibited federal injunctions against labor and outlawed "Yellow Dog" contracts
1932,5/15 NY Times announces that AFL dropped its traditional opposition to unemployment insurance. Later that year, they reversed Gompers' tradition of "voluntarism" and asked for 6-hour day legislation.
1932: Wisconsin adopted first unemployment insurance act in the U.S.
1933: Association of Journaleros formed as independent union of Texicans from many occupations
1933: Dallas votes to repeal prohibition
1933, 4/30: Singer Willy Nelson born
1933,6/16: National Industrial Recovery Act became law, including section 7(a) that said, "employees shall have the right to
organize and bargain collectively through representatives of their own choosing, and shall be free from
interference, restraint, or coercion of employees… in the designation of such representatives."
1933: Wagner-Peyser Act created United States Employment Service in the Dept of Labor
1933,9/4: Ft Worth holds first Labor Day parade in 10 years. Organizer T.E. Barlow was arrested and killed in Tarrant County Jail.
1934,2/12: Dressmakers walk out on 15 factories owned by the Texas Dress Manufacturers in Dallas
1934, Thurber High School graduates its last class. The only union town in Texas deserted
1934,4/6 U.S. Senate approves Hugo Black’s bill for a 30-hour week. President Roosevelt is thus goaded into approving NLRA
1934,7/16 San Francisco General Strike
1935, March: 18 women garment workers arrested during strike in garment district of Dallas
1935,6/1 Wagner Act Passed. It was called National Labor Relations Act and "Labor's Magna Carta"
1935,7/5 National Labor Relations Act passes Congress. For arguments against the NLRA, see Labor Law as History
1935,8/14 Roosevelt signs Social Security Act over Republican opposition. Click here
1935,8/26 UAW chartered by AFL. Francis Dillon appointed president. For Texas history of the period, click here
1935, 10/1: Gulf Coast Longshoremen's Strike begun.
1935,11/9 CIO formed as committee in AFL. "Committee for Industrial Organization" was eventually expelled and became "Congress of Industrial Organizations"
1936: Dallas Citizens Council forms to organize State Fair of Texas, which includes "Negro Day" and "Ku Klux Klan" day
1936,1/29 Akron rubber workers sit-down strike
1936,5/21 Washington Job Protection Agreement passed
1936, 7/17: Fascist General Franco rebels against the democratic Spanish Republic
1936, 8: United States refuses to mediate Spanish Civil War and joins France and England in "neutrality"
1936 Democrat Franklin Roosevelt won most Texas votes for President: 734,485. Socialist Norman Thomas won 1,075 and Communist Earl Browder won 253 CIO organized unions all over Texas
1936 12/24 150 Houston dockworkers beaten by police
1936, 12/28: American airplne engines exported to Spanish Republic -- denounced by President Roosevelt as "unpatriotic"
1937: Dallas Citizen Council forms its political wing, Dallas Citizens Charter Association
1937,1/24 UAW organizes first aircraft local
1937,2/11 Sit down at Flint begins. Victory comes on March 4th.
1937,5/26 "Little Steel" strike
1937,5/30 Memorial Day massacre at Republic steel
1937,6/24 Railroad Retirement Act passed
1937,8/25 Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters gets contract with Pullman Company
1937 Bluesman Robert Johnson records 13 tracks at 508 Park Av in Dallas
1937 Texas Rangers sent to Dallas to oppose labor strikes in millinery and at Ford. "Labor Violence" blamed
1938,2/2 San Antonio pecan shellers' strike. For more on this click here For Manuela Sager's story on it, click here
1938,5/16 U.S. Supreme Court decision permits "permanent replacement" of strikers
1938,6/25 Fair Labor Standards Act signed by FDR. Effective 10-24-38 1938, October, Federal Minimum Wage law took effect and set wages at 25 cents/hour
1938/11: CIO holds first first constitutional convention as separate organization after being kicked out of the AFL
1939, 3: Triumph of fascism in Spain
1939 Texas Building Trades Council formed after “New Deal” brought 1,750 projects to Texas
1940 Mexican Chamber of Commerce formed in Dallas. Later named Hispanic Chamber
1940 Democrat Franklin Roosevelt gets most Texas votes for President with 840,151. Socialist Norman Thomas Gets 728 votes and Communist Earl Browder gets 212.
1940,10/24 40-hour workweek goes into effect under FLSA of 1938
1940: Dallas population estimated at 380,927
1941: NLRB, using evidence accumulated from former Ford thugs in Dallas, rules that Ford must allow UAW to organize all plants nationwide
1941,4/1 UAW strikes at Ford for recognition
1941,4/11 Ford signs first UAW Contract
1941,6/20 Breakthrough contract signed with Ford at River Rouge Plant. UAW 870 chartered at Ford in Dallas. Click here
1941: North American Aviation, a department of General Motors, opens plant beside the Naval Air Station far West Dallas (Grand Prairie)
1941, 9/1 In a Labor Day editorial, the Dallas Morning News proposed a constitutional amendment for “Right to Work/Scab.”
1941,12/7 Pearl Harbor day
1942,2/19 Japanese Americans put in concentration camps
1942, 8/24 Bracero Program instituted to bring in 50,000 Mexican workers first year. "Wartime" program kept until 1964
1942, 11/24 War Labor Board adopted official policy of equal pay for equal work for men & women
1943 NAACP lawsuit wins equal pay for African American teachers in Dallas schools
1943,2/21 UAW Local 645 wins ratification at North American in Grand Prairie
1943,4/22 First UAW-CIO contract at North American Aviation in Grand Prairie, Texas
1943, 6/15 Racist pogrom in Beaumont
1943 FDR created Fair Employment Practices to end discrimination in war industries
1944,6/5 D Day. Americans engage Germans in France
1944 Democrat FD Roosevelt gets most Texas votes for President with 821,605. Socialist Norman Thomas gets 594
1944,8/3 White streetcar workers in Philadelphia strike to protest promotions of Black employees
1945,5/8 VE day
1945,8/7 Hiroshima bombed
1945,8/9 Nagasaki bombed
1945 Oil workers carry out strike for “52 for 40 or fight!” to get 52 hrs pay for 40 hrs work. President Truman used the military to break the strike
1945, 10- World Federation of Trade Unions organized with CIO support. They left it in 1949
1945: At war's end, all North American Aircraft employees laid off and the plant is padlocked. They find out by radio announcement
1945: Temco aircraft company started in east side of old North American plant
1946,1/21 Steel Strike
1947, March. Measure passed to create Houston College for Negroes, which later became Texas Southern University in Houston.
1947: Dallas Morning News editor comes up with misleading phrase "Right to Work" to replace "Open Shop" to mean anti-union workplaces.
1947, 4/8 Texas passes its “Right to Work/Scab” law in eager anticipation of its pending legalization in Congress.
1947,6/4 Taft Hartley anti-union law passed over Truman's veto. Section 14(b) allows “Right to Work/Scab” laws. For a discussion of labor law as history, click here
1948, January Kate Richards O’Hare died in California
1948 Democrat Harry Truman gets most Texas votes with 750,700. Socialist Norman Thomas received 874 1948 U.S. military is racially integrated
1948: Chance Vought airplane company moves into west side of old North American plant in Grand Prairie.
1948 Mississippi was last state to enact workermen's compensation legislation
1949: A. Maceo Smith of Dallas elected to NAACP national board
1949,2/1 13th Amendment
1949,8/3 UAW wins Local 893 at Vought in Grand Prairie, Texas
1949,9/29 UAW negotiated first pension plan ($100/mo) with Ford. Union movement abandoned expanding Social Security and, with contractual health care for members, abandoned national health care ambitions
1949,11/4 International Union of Electrical Workers (IUE) set up to grab Electrical Workers Union (UE) contracts as part of CIO effort to destroy unions whose officers failed to take the anti-communist oath
1949 Inland Steel Co V. United Steelworkers of America (CIO) case allowed unions to bargain for retirement plans
195_ Jose Estrada deported (twice?) from Dallas after accusations of communism
1950 Federal government took over the railroads until 1952
1950 Heman Sweatt enters law school at UT. First African American
1950,5/29 UAW GM Workers win hospitalization plan and Cost of Living (COLA) raises
1950,12/3 UAW Local 893 wins its first COLA raise at Vought, $.03
1951 International Association of Machinists returned to AFL after being out since 1945
1952 Republican Dwight Eisenhower received most Texas votes for US President with 1,102,878. Vincent Hallinan of Progressive Party won 294
1952, November. Presidents Philip Murray of the CIO and William Green of the AFL both died Walter Reuther and George Meany take over
1953,7/27 End of Korean war
1954,5/17 Supreme Court rules segregated schools unconstitutional in Brown v Topeka
1954, 6/29 NAACP holds national convention in Dallas
1954,9/7 Elaine Lantz born
1954, 9/7 Dallas NAACP lined Black students at door of Linfield Elementary to show that Black students are not still admitted despite Supreme Court ruling
1954 Incumbent Dixiecrat Governor Alan Shivers used red-baiting and opposition to unions to barely defeat Ralph Yarborough
1955, 9/12 NAACP filed suit seeking full integration of Dallas schools. Fight continued to 2003. click here
1955,12/5 AFL and CIO merge into AFL-CIO with George Meany as President Mid 1950’s: Texas Attorney General John Ben Shepperd outlawed the NAACP in Texas, He declared it a subversive organization. Texans kept their membership secret
1955,7/20 Convair Crusader nuclear-powered aircraft began testing at Ft Worth Convair plant. Project abandoned 3/28/57
1955,12/1 Rosa Parks arrested on bus in Montgomery
1956: Dallas discontinues streetcar service
1956,3/1 Fair Labor Standards Act amended to raise the minimum wage to $1/hour
1956: 7/28 Texans voted more than 3 to 1 for segregation measures. See Notes
1956 Republican Eisenhower gets most Texas votes with 1,080,619
1956, 8/31 Racist threats and official malfeasance triumph over integration in Mansfield
1957, Dec AFL-CIO expelled Teamsters, Bakery Workers, and Laundry Workers. Three railroad unions affiliated
1957, 7/30 Texas AFL-CIO forms
1959,12/5 Montgomery bus boycott begins. Texan Pancho Medrano sent by UAW to assist
1960 Democrat John Kennedy gets 1,167,932 votes to win Texas
1960 AFL-CIO Texas union membership peaks at 400,000 members
1961,4/24 Bay of Pigs in Cuba. Unsuccessful U.S. backed attempted overthrow of revolution.
1961, 4/27 Dr. Martin Luther King addressed the 25th anniversary of UAW
1962, 1/15 Federal employees gain right of collective bargaining under Kennedy 1963: Organized attacks against Vice President Lyndon Johnson & wife and against Senator Adlai Stevenson take place in downtown Dallas 1963, 11/22 Jack Kennedy assassination in Dallas 1963,11/9 End of poll taxes in Texas. For Texas history of the period, click here 1963 6/9 Equal Pay Act prohibited discrimination against women 1963,6/12 Medgar Evers assassinated in Mississippi 1963,8/28 "I Have A Dream" March on Washington 1964 San Antonio bookseller accused of having “seditious papers” (books by Marx and Jean-Paul Sartre). Case goes to Supreme Court 1964 Democrat Lyndon Johnson gets1,663,185 votes to win Texas 1964,6/21 Civil Rights activists Chaney, Goodman and Schwerner murdered in Mississippi 1964,7/2 1964 Civil Rights Act passed 1964,7/9 Mass Transportation Act passed 1964 Bracero Program ended 1965,2/21 Malcolm X assassinated 1965,3/21 Selma Freedom March 1965,5/26 A. Philip Randolph Institute founded 1965,7/30 Medicare law passed 1965,9/6 farm workers start grape boycott 1966, 6/1 Star County farm workers strike near Rio Grande City 1966,8/22 United Farm Workers Organizing Committee (UFWOC) formed from Cesar Chavez' independent union and AFL-CIO AWOC. Later became United Farm Workers of America (UFW) 1967: Texas Instruments invents electronic calculator 1967, Jan Dr. George Green starts Labor History Archives at the University of Texas in Arlington. Grew to be largest in Southwest. Click here. 1967 “Riots” at Texas Southern University. Thousands of police bullets riddle boys’ dormitory 1967 First African American member of Dallas School Board, Emmett Conrad, elected 1967 Texas women relieved from some legal oppression. Click here 1968 Democrat Hubert Humphrey gets 1,266,804 votes to win Texas 1968,4/4 MLK killed in Memphis while helping sanitation workers strike 1968, 6/5 Robert Kennedy killed 1968,10/2 Tlatelolco massacre, 500 killed in Mexico City 1969 First African American on Dallas City Council, George Allen, elected. Anita N Martinez is first Hispanic elected to City Council 1969,2/4 Mark Clark and Fred Hampton killed by Chicago police 1969, 6/28 Stonewall Riot in Manhattan started the modern gay rights movement 1969, Peter Johnson arrived in Dallas to promoted the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) 1969,9/11 Texas Instruments founders donate land for UT-Dallas 1970: Ford plant closes in Dallas 1970 Jose Angel Gutierrez & others start La Raza Unida Party in Crystal City 1970 Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) passed after a long fight 1970’s San Antonio community organization COPS became a force under Ernesto Cortes 1970,4/21 Earth Day 1970,5/7 UAW President Walter Reuther sends telegram to President Nixon protesting the invasion of Cambodia 1970,8/1 Carl Hampton killed by Houston police 1970, 10-6 Dallas Legal Services filed Tasby v Ellis to integrate schools. Click here 1971 18 African Americans file lawsuit to replace Dallas’ at-large City Council elections 1971, Teamsters National Black Caucus formed 1971,5/9 Walter & May Reuther killed 1972 Democrat George McGovern gets 1,154,289 votes to win Texas. Socialist Workers Party candidate Linda Jenness gets 8,864 1973 (?) United Farm Workers joined AFL-CIO 1973, 1/22 Abortion legalized by Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision begun in Dallas 1973, 2/27 American Indian Movement (AIM) stands up to FBI at Wounded Knee 1973, 7/24 Little Santos Rodriguez killed by Dallas police. Click here 1973,1/27 End of Vietnam War. For notes on labor’s role, click here 1973,7/13 Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA) formed 1973 Houston policemen exposed as members of KKK 1974: U.S. Supreme Court decides in favor of Medrano et al over A.Y. Alee and the Texas Rangers 1974,2/23 Farah recognizes ACTWU as bargaining agent in El Paso pants factory after nationwide fight 1976,9 San Antonio legal workers protected their union brothers and sisters by refusing to show their documents during an INS raid 1974,3/22 Coalition of Labor Union Women (CLUW) founded 1974,8/1 First women American miners began work 1974,8/9: George Lambert, great Texas labor organizer, died. See "Blue Texas" by Max Krochmal. 1975,7/30 Jimmy Hoffa disappeared 1975,11/13 Karen Silkwood killed while trying to alert workers about the dangers of radioactivity 1976 Democrat Jimmy Carter gets 2,082,319 Texas votes. Peter Camejo Soc Work gets 1,723. Anti-war independent Eugene McCarthy received 20,118 and there were 2,982 write-in votes 1979,3/27 Three Mile Island nuclear accident occurred 1979, 6/13 Texas makes June 19 “Juneteenth” a state holiday. The first state to thus honor emancipation. 1979,7/19 Nicaragua revolution 1980 Republican Ronald Reagan won Texas with 2,510,705 votes 1980,3/24 Archbishop Oscar Romero assassinated by graduates of the U.S. Army School of the Americas 1980,4/11 EEOC began to regulate sexual harassment 1980,8/22 Joyce Miller is first woman elected to AFL-CIO Executive Council 1981 First former union president and FBI informant inaugurated President of U.S. (Reagan) 1981, 6/19 Three highschoolers, Baker, Freeman and Booker, drowned at Comanche Crossing while in police custody at Juneteenth celebration. Police exonerated by all-white jury in Dallas. Giant Mejia annual celebrations diminish 1981,8/3 PATCO union broken by President Reagan. Almost all union memberships decline 1982: Texas Farm Workers union disbanded. Antonio Orendain had broken away from UFW 1982 Ku Klux Klan marched through Dallas and demonstrated on police station steps. For more on KKK, click here 1983 Dallas commits to mass transit with Dallas Area Regional Transit (DART) 1984,8/20: Republican convention re-nominates Ronald Reagan at Dallas Convention 1984 Republican Ronald Reagan won Texas with 3,433,428 votes. Communist Gus Hall had 126 write-in votes 1984,5/21 First five union activists fired by LTV in Grand Prairie, Texas 1985,6/16: Death of great Texas civil libertarian and socialist candidate for governor, Carl Brannin 1985,7/1 UAW 848 wins contract with LTV after 15-month in-plant strategy 1986-89 Hundreds of Texas Savings & Loans collapse 1987,4/18 Dallas elects first woman mayor, Annette Strauss 1987,10/19 Stock market crash 1987 Five major industrial unions initiate the Jobs with Justice coalition. Eastern Airlines strike support benefits 1988 Republican George Bush won Texas with 3,036,829 1989,// Dallas activists join Amalgamated Transit Union strike against Greyhound 1990,1/15 North Texas Jobs with Justice carries out its first action, the Dallas MLK birthday march. Click here 1990,2/19 Pittston miners strike wins 1990, 6/15 Justice for Janitors Day established 1991, 3- NAACP and SCLC announce boycott to protest the city’s resistance to the court-ordered City Council election plan 1991 The 1971 lawsuit for fairer City Council elections in Dallas wins. Only the mayor will be elected “at large.” 1991, 11/5 Voters elect first Dallas City Council under 14-1 plan 1991,8/31 "Solidarity Day II" 300,000 trade unionists march on Washington 1991,9/3 25 poultry workers killed by fire in unsafe plant in Hamlet, NC 1991: Dallas Times Herald ceases publication in nationwide trend toward "one newspaper" cities 1992 Republican George Bush won Texas with 2,496,071, but Democrat Clinton elected President 1992,3/5 Caterpillar declared impasse in negotiations with UAW 1992, 6/29 Ravenswood strikers victorious 1993 The Vatican reviewed Galileo Galilei's case and found him innocent of heresy 1993,4/13 It became illegal for Oklahoma men to rape their wives 1993,4/28 Workers' Memorial Day began 1994,1/1 NAFTA began 1994, Nov 30-Dec 2. Industrial Union Dept of AFL-CIO conference “Organizing, Workplace Rights, and & Building Our Unions” in Washington, DC. Established principles later used by challengers in 1995 AFL-CIO elections 1994, George W Bush elected Governor. Major quarrels with labor begin. Click here 1995, 5/11 The Amalgamated Clothing and Textile Workers Union (ACTWU) prior to forming UNITE!, signed a contract with Fojtasek in Dallas. An almost totally immigrant workforce now had a union contract in Texas! Click here 1995, April (?) 12-year old Iqbal Masih, a world figure in the fight against child labor, shotgunned to death 1995,7/1 Baltimore City Council put first “Living Wage” ordinance into effect 1995,10/23 AFL-CIO changes top leadership. For their program and some discussion, click here 1995 Amalgamated Clothiers and Textile Workers Union (ACTWU) merges with International Ladies Garment Workers Union (ILGWU) to form UNITE! Efforts underway to organize immigrant locals 1996 Telecommunications Act accelerated the concentration of information sources into a few corporate hands 1996, 4/28 Manuela Soliz Sager died after lifelong commitment to Texas labor struggles 1996 Republican Bob Dole won Texas with 2,736,167 1997, 8/14 Nationwide solidarity helped Teamsters win UPS strike 1997,7/24 Dallas Diocese loses major sexual abuse case 1999,11/30 Labor joins large assembly of activists in opposing World Trade Organization in Seattle 2000, 4/10 Machinists struck Lockheed in Ft Worth 2000 George W. Bush, Republican, gets 3,799,639 Texas votes to win the delegation. Overall vote in Texas: 59%, but much lower in major cities. Dallas vote: 52%. But Bush raised most of his money in Texas. Supreme Court rules that Bush won election 2001,6 Great Texas organizer and progressive Latane Lambert died 2001, 9/25 Oklahomans lose “Right to Work/Scab” election. Click here for info 2001 North Texas labor loses the body, but not the spirit, of Miss Priscilla Bell. Click here 2001, 9/11 World Trade Center destroyed, wars in Middle East begun 2002, 4/4 Pancho Medrano "Senior" died in Dallas 2003, 1/28 Maury Maverick Jr, great Texas civil libertarian, dies in San Antonio 2003, 6-5 Judge Barefoot Sanders declares Dallas schools integrated after 48-year fight! Click here 2004 GW Bush inaugurated for second term. For Texas history into 2001, click here. For Texas history into 2003, click here.
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