Thursday, May 5, 2016

May 5, 1912 -- Strike Against Newspapers Brings Violence

May 5, 1912 – Chief of Police John McWeeney gets down to business and tells his lieutenants to apply “drastic measures” to striking pressmen in the newspaper strike that began with workers striking against Hearst publications in Chicago on April 30, an action that spread to all of the other newspapers in the city. “The tactics of the strikers have been a disgrace to civilization,” said the Chief. His feeling was that 528 patrolmen were “none too many . . . in view of the unexpected brutality resorted to by the strikers.” [Chicago Daily Tribune, May 6, 1912] A female news vender had been attacked at the Fifty-First Street station of the “Alley ‘L’”. A newsboy at Thirty-Ninth Street had been beaten with a blackjack. Another newsboy was attacked at Clark and North Avenue, and a reporter for the Chicago Examiner was roughed up at Madison and Halsted. It would be a long time before the violence died down; the strike finally ended in November. Above the Chicago police make a show of force as the strike continues.

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