Friday, May 27, 2016

On This Date in Minnesota History: May 27

May 27, 1912 – Notice was served today on the officials of the railroads operating in the Twin Cities that unless the strike of the freight handlers in Chicago was settled before noon tomorrow, the 1,800 freight handlers and railway clerks of Minneapolis and St. Paul would walk out in sympathy at 1 p.m.

The notice was signed by James Kelley, international vice president of the organization. Kelley would not state positively that the Twin Cities freight handlers would go out tomorrow. He said it all depended on whether the railroads were willing to open negotiations.

Railroad officials, upon whom the notice was served today, said they would refuse to negotiate for a settlement of the strike.

“If the freight handlers go out we will proceed to hire men to fill their places,” said James H. Foster, general superintendent of the Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul railroad today. “I do not feel, however, that the men will violate the agreement they have with the railroads that provides that any change either in the wage scale or in hours, must be submitted 30 days before suspension of work.”

The Minneapolis Morning Tribune; “Freight Handlers Serve Strike Notice Upon Roads. Union Official threatens Walkout Unless Chicago Trouble Is Settled by Noon. Railroad Men Say They Will Refuse to Negotiate for Settlement.”; May 28, 1912; p. 1.


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