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IWW Chronology (1904 - 1911)

Originally Titled, 95 Years of Revolutionary Industrial Unionism, by Michael Hargis - featured in Anarcho Syndicalist Review, #27 and #28.

1904

  • Meeting of six industrial unionists in Chicago issues call for a January conference to discuss formation of a revolutionary working class organization.

1905

  • January 2: Conference of 23 industrial unionists in Chicago issues an Industrial Union Manifesto calling for an industrial Union Congress to be held in Chicago June 27.
  • IWW Founding Convention - June 27: The "Continental Congress of the Working Class" establishes the industrial Workers of the World with cooperation of elements from Socialist Labor Party/Socialist Trades & Labor Alliance, Socialist Party of America, Western Federation of Miners and survivors of International Working People's Association.

1906

  • Haywood, Pettibone and Moyers, WFM leaders, framed for attempting to kill the governor of Colorado.
  • Second Convention of IWW abolishes office of president and ousts "pure and simple" trade-unionists.
  • Lockout of IWW members in Goldfield, Nevada. Vincent St. John arrested for conspiracy to commit murder in death of a restaurant owner.
  • WFM-IWW miners strike against wage cut in Goldfield. Federal troops sent in to crush strike; first stay-in strike (3,000 workers) of the 20th Century carried out by IWW at General Electric plant in Schenectady, NY.

1907

  • Founding of National Industrial Union of Textile Workers, 1st chartered IWW industrial union.
  • Strike at Marston Textile Mill, Skowhegan, Maine;
  • 3,000 IWW sawmill workers strike in Portland, OR;
  • IWW smeltermen strike in Tacoma, WA win 8-hour day and 15% pay hike;
  • Lumber workers strike in Humboldt County, CA, Missoula, MT and Vancouver, B.C.;
  • Bakers in San Francisco strike;
  • Lumber workers strike in Montana;
  • Textile strike at Mapleville, RI;
  • American Tube strike in Bridgeport, CT

1908

  • Textile workers strike, Lawrence, MA
  • Fourth convention results in split between political actionists, led by Daniel DeLeon of the SLP, and direct actionists, led by Vincent St. John and J.H. Walsh. DeLeonists set up rival IWW in Detroit and accuse Chicago IWW with "anarchism."

1909

  • Industrial Worker begin publishing in Spokane, WA as the voice of the Western branches of IWW.
  • Pressed Steel Car Company workers strike in McKees Rock, PA.
  • Sheet and tinplate workers strike in New Castle, PA.
  • Solidarity begins publishing in New Castle, PA as organ of Eastern branches of IWW.
  • Missoula, MT free speech fight.

1910

  • Strike against Standard Steel Car Company in Hammond, IN.
  • Strike against Hansel & Elcock Construction in Chicago.
  • First reference to "direct action" in IWW publications.
  • Strike against Lamm & Company, Chicago clothiers.
  • First use of terms "sabotage" and "passive resistance" in IWW publications.
  • Meat packers strike in Pittsburgh, PA; Show workers strike in Brooklyn, NY.
  • Organizing against "job sharks" in Washington State leads to victorious Free Speech Fight in Spokane, WA.
  • Brotherhood of Timber Workers, racially integrated union, formed in Louisiana and East Texas.

1911

  • IWW Free Speech Fight in Fresno, CA.
  • Brooklyn shoe workers strike several shops.
  • Strike at American Locomotive.