Rise of the Unions Unions: formed by workers to act as a group instead of individuals. Strikes



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Rise of the Unions

Unions: formed by workers to act as a group instead of individuals.

Strikes: organized by unions to protest for better working conditions.

Workers seek a National Voice

Knights of Labor: formed in 1869 hoped to create a single national union by joining all skilled and unskilled workers.

Terrence Powderly: Leader of the Knights of Labor.

American Federation of Labor: (AFL) founded in 1881, founded to unite workers of similar economic interests. Had separate unions of skilled workers like carpenters and cigar makers.

Samuel Gompers: founder of the AFL.

Closed Shops: Places where only union members could be hired.

Government’s Attitude toward Unions

Protector of the Economy

Sherman Anti-Trust Act: in 1890, the Supreme Court ruled that unions were illegal combinations in restraint of trade.

Public Opinion

Haymarket Affair: in 1886, labor leaders were blamed when a bomb exploded during a demonstration of striking workers at Haymarket Square in Chicago


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