When leaders of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad Company ordered this second reduction in less than eight months, railroad workers in Martinsburg, West Virginia decided they had had enough. On July 16,workers in that town drove all the engines into the roundhouse and boldly declared that no train would leave until the owners restored their pay. The local townspeople gathered at the railyard to show their support for the strikers. A great showdown was on.
Pittsburgh railroad strike of PittsburghPennsylvania became the site of the worst violence of related strikes.
Thomas Alexander Scott of the Pennsylvania Railroaddescribed as one of the first robber baronssuggested that the strikers should be given "a rifle diet for a few days and see how they like that kind of bread.
Several state militia units were ordered into service by Governor John Hartranftincluding the 3rd Pennsylvania Infantry Regiment under the command of Colonel George R. Strikers set fires that razed 39 buildings and destroyed rolling stock: On July 22, the militia mounted an assault on the strikers, shooting their way out of the roundhouse and killing 20 more people on their way out of the city.
After more than a month of rioting and bloodshed in Pittsburgh, President Rutherford B. Hayes sent in federal troops as in West Virginia and Maryland to end the strikes and strife. Philadelphia[ edit ] Three hundred miles to the east, Philadelphia strikers battled local militia and set fire to much of Center City before Pennsylvania Governor John Hartranft gained assistance and federal troops from President Hayes to put down the uprising.
Reading Railroad Massacre Workers in ReadingPennsylvania's third-largest industrial city at the time, also broke out into a strike. This city was home of the engine works and shops of the Reading Railroadagainst which engineers had struck since April State militia shot 16 citizens.
Preludes to the massacre included: Workers burned down the only railroad bridge offering connections to the west, in order to prevent local militia from being mustered to actions in the state capital of Harrisburg or Pittsburgh.
Authorities used state militia, local police and the Pennsylvania Pinkerton National Detective Agency in an attempt to break Great railroad strike 1877 strike.
This militia was not mobilized by local public officials. The mayor, who owned coal mines, organized a city militia. It committed 14 civilian shooting casualties, resulting in the deaths of two persons.
The posse killed or fatally wounded four and wounded an undetermined number of others, estimated at 20 to 50, according to different sources. Later the posse leader and about 20 of his men were charged with assault and murder. They were all acquitted.
Under the effects of the shootings and military occupation, the miners ended their strike without gaining any of their demands. Chicago railroad strike of On July 24, rail traffic in Chicago was paralyzed when angry mobs of unemployed citizens wreaked havoc in the rail yards, shutting down both the Baltimore and Ohio and the Illinois Central railroads.
Soon, other railroads throughout the state were brought to a standstill, with demonstrators shutting down railroad traffic in BloomingtonAuroraPeoriaDecaturUrbana and other rail centers throughout Illinois.
In sympathy, coal miners in the pits at Braidwood, LaSalleSpringfield, and Carbondale went on strike as well. In Chicago, the Workingmen's Party organized demonstrations that drew crowds of 20, people. Judge Thomas Drummond of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuitwho was overseeing numerous railroads that had declared bankruptcy in the wake of the earlier financial Panic ofruled that "A strike or other unlawful interference with the trains will be a violation of the United States law, and the court will be bound to take notice of it and enforce the penalty.
Marshals to protect the railroads, and asked for federal troops to enforce his decision: They were partially successful, and shortly thereafter were reinforced by the arrival of the Illinois National Guard and U. Army troops, mobilized by the governor. On July 25, violence between police and the mob erupted, with events reaching a peak the following day.
These blood-soaked confrontations between police and enraged mobs are known as the Battle of the Viaduct as they took place near the Halsted Street viaduct, although confrontations also took place at nearby 16th Street, on 12th, and on Canal Street. An estimated 20 men and boys died, none of whom were law enforcement or troops; scores more were wounded; and the loss of property was valued in the millions of dollars.
Louis general strike On July 21, disgruntled workers in the industrial rail hub of East St. LouisIllinois, halted all freight traffic, with the city remaining in the control of the strikers for almost a week. Louis Workingman's Party led a group of approximately men across the Missouri River in an act of solidarity with the nearly 1, workers on strike.
It was a catalyst for labor unrest spreading, with thousands of workers in several industries striking for the eight-hour day and a ban on child labor.
This was the first such general strike in the United States. These armed forces killed at least eighteen people in skirmishes around the city. On July 28,they took control of the Relay Depot, the Commune's command center, and arrested some seventy strikers.
Strike over[ edit ] The Great Railroad Strike of began to lose momentum when President Hayes sent federal troops from city to city. These troops suppressed strike after strike, until at last, approximately 45 days after it had started, the Great Railroad Strike of was over.
Many states enacted conspiracy statutes. States formed new militia units and constructed National Guard armories in numerous industrial cities. For workers and employers alike, the strikes had shown the power of workers in combination to challenge the status quo.Great Railroad Strike of Survey of the Great Railroad Strike of , a series of violent rail strikes across the United States.
More than , workers participated in the strikes, at the height of which more than half the freight on the country’s tracks had come to a halt.
Read about the events and outcome of the strikes. Chinese labor was suggested, as they had already helped build the California Central Railroad, the railroad from Sacramento to Marysville and the San Jose Railway. Originally thought to be too small to complete such a momentous task, Charles Crocker of Central Pacific pointed out.
Great Railroad Strike of Survey of the Great Railroad Strike of , a series of violent rail strikes across the United States. More than , workers participated in the strikes, at the height of which more than half the freight on the country’s tracks had come to a halt.
Read about the events and outcome of the strikes. Misc. Antiques For Sale. Page 1 – click on any image for larger view. This bar-code number lets you verify that you're getting exactly the right version or edition of a book.
The digit and digit formats both work. The Great Railroad Strike of started on July 14 in Martinsburg, West Virginia, in response to the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad (B&O) cutting wages of workers for the third time in a year. Striking workers would not allow any of the trains, mainly freight trains, to roll until this third wage cut was revoked.