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The Voice of the People.
(Formerly "The Lumberjack.")
Entered as Second-class Matter, July 5, 1913, at
the Post Office at New Orleans, La., Lunder
the Act of August 24, 1912.
PulMished Weekly by National Iadustrial UnIon of
Forest and Lumber Workers, Southern District.
District Headquarters . Aleaadria, La.
Jay Smith M atary
OFFICE OF PUBLICATION:
520 POYDRAS STREET, NEW ORLEANS, LA.
COVINGTON HALL _ Editor
UNITED STATES: 52 weeks, $1.00; 26 weeks, 50
cents; 13 weeks, 25 cents.
CANADA: 40 weeks, $1.00; 10 weeks, 25 cents
FOREIGN: One Year ---- 15
SINGLE COPIES: 5 cents
To ad Locals and Rebels ordering 10 or mere
copies and paying 10 weeks, or 50 or more copies
paying bi-weekly or monthly, or 500 or more copies
paying weekly, IN ADVANCE, we will make a rate
of, in United States, 1 1-2c per copy, in Canada, 2c
per copy. Charged accounts 1-2c per copy extra
No account carried over 30 days without a remit
UNITED STATES: 5 copies, 13 weeks_ __..1.00
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CASH MUST ACCOMPANY ALL ORDERS.
We now have on hand a supply of THIIIEE and SIX
months I'REPAID SUBCAIID.. Send in for a few
and help in the work of ievolutioniziny the South,
wh/ch is a matter of VITAL inmportaunce to tht. 1. -W.
W. T'hse ard.s ue will sll you as follows: THREE
months cards, F1VE for $1.00; T I' E. TY for $3.50.
SIX months cards, FE I E for $2.00; TW ESN'Y for
$i.00. At these prces you or your Local can help
THE VOICE and make a good comrnission, besides.
Might Is Right.
The root-thought of "Mlight Is Right" lies in this
qu, ation: "Property, remember, is an integral part
of treedom and manhood. They who have no proper
ty are at the mercy of those who have. Woe unto
him who has 'nothing.' Economic dependence is a
If every Lumberack, Worker and Working Farmer
in the South would read this great book they would
clearly see how they have lost their inheritance in
their native land by themselves losing the oldtime
fighting spirit of the Clansmen.
If you want to read this tremendous Epic of the
Strong, send us a DOLLAR and we will send you a
copy of "MIGHT IS RIGHT" and THE VOICE for
30 weeks; or we will send you the book alone for
FIFTY CENTS. Address THE VOICE, 520 Poyd
ras Street, New Orleans, La.
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In the long hours of the night, here in the silence
of te jail, I hear the tread of the marchers in the
sorrowing army of the unemployed. The sound is like
distant funeral music. Its theme is suffering-the
suffering of Man. It makes the heart sick. I won
der and wonder the why of it all.
The newspapers record only part of the ghastly
tragedies of the social drama-Poverty. Yet enough
is printed to make one stagger in the presence of the
To-day we are told that one hundred and fifty
thousand men in Illinois are roaming the streets seek.
ing a chance to honestly earn their bread. They are
weary, and cold, and hungry, and homeless. We know
the story of their crying souls. We are one of them.
We have known the wandering search for work. Fear
of enforced idleness i4 indelibly written in the
memory of the toiler. lIe knows the toll exacted
the toll in pain.
If this is a gray study of the facts, in what sad
*dc.r color can we picture the sufferings of the women
and children who share and bear the burdens of pov
erty. ('Child life is being crushed and destroyed. Song
is banished froem the home. In the gaslighted sweat
shops the music of dollar-making goes merrily on.
Social joy-riders move through the night entirely un
mindful of the cost of their gaiety. Maybe this is as
it should be, and maybe it is not.
Necessity compels a protest. The victims organize
in self-defense. The organization is called a Labor
lUnion. Its purpose is to free men from poverty-a
freedom necessary to a free manhood. The effort is
nt with the organized assault of the beneficiaries of
greed-the thoughtless, selfish seekers for gold.
A hell strikes in the neighboring church tower
Its tuneful message floats through the jail. It says
that all is well, and the words of Nazarene still live
on. Yet, in the shadow of the nhurch children are
crying, women are sighing and life is dying.
The march of dollarless, living dead, goes on. Even
1. locked in a cell, am better off than the marchers.
CARL E. PERSON,
County Jail, Clinton, Illinois.
JAIL CONDITIONS IN TEXAS.
By Nils II. Ilansson.
Outside the Bars, and the thugs surrounding them,
there is ne\er anything heard or said about what is
really going on in the jail, in the city of -El Paso, in
the dark state of Texas. But if one should happen
to be traveling through the South, looking for an
opportunity to sell one's laboring power, someoni
along the road will soon pass the word that there
are men in jail in El Paso, serving two hundred days
on the chaingang for vagranc.y.
I met one young fellow in Arizona who told me
that he had just finished t'wo hundred days in El Paso,
and he warned tme not to take that route. lie said
that lie was in a good and healthy condition when he.
about seven months back, was thrown into the Hell
holes of Texas as a "vag". his health was now broken
and there was practically nothing left of him, the
consumption eating his life away.
In spite of this, I and two more went along towards
El l'aso and were going through the state of Texas.
going along slowly but surely we arrived in that
great ( !) e-ity one day in thet morning a couple of
weeks back. As we had some money, we had decided
to ri-nt a roIn as somo as we got uptown, and get a
geed sleep, But that "wlmdni't do. No, as soon as
\\- laildet-l oln the street ocf that great town we were
mcnti Iy we, tly-eops. and tilhl to, go with them up to
lthe etlie-e. S, wc dlid. Sure. This was about three
e'c-lok ini the miorning.
As the delr opened to the little two-by-four pen,
ithe first th nig that iiet us wa.- the stink in there.
The simell fnroi a rctetnI- sewer coulcnot be worse.
In tllcr- wer- n-arly a hmclredl men. The most
,f llhe-mi \ceri sle.piing on the -ol d rement floor with
,ut cccy beducleithl-s., '.-e-,pt a few old raggy blankets.
't ccc vi'f t hie ric were net asleep because of the
,olhI night, s-, they we-r- walking ae-k and forth, trying
ti, khec-p xwarc'. ''This was also a hard proposition be
nc;ise- cf the small spae-, lift by thse whoi tried to
havi a littlc sliumtc er.
Ity tihe weiak lighIt 1 -cmi disc,-,verc-d something on
the- 'cat if miy partner. That was a couple of those
small man-eeti-rs, whic-h are born in filth, live in filth,
andl thrive in filth only.
Sei: we we--re toldl that those animals (in the West
the-y iarc calle'd Western livestick.) were falling down
frcmi the c--iilinig. and off the walls and from every
ewhierre. It didni't niatt,-r where one turned 'in there.
tlhose ailchitiols crecature.s ccldl always find pastures
No seip nor t,,wils we-re supplied in that jail. In
the, mcorning we we-ri- give.-r a fe-w beans for br-akfast
andrl a pie-ci if lbread. .lJust bifore we received our
rIerakfast a fe-w dlIpea-ficelnds asked for th;-ir ''medicine''
;lcI tWO cof 1IcllI gct a 'ie-al-II as answer.
ltieht aifter lrea;kfast cllci-ef the- guards-he was one
,,f these see c-al. lie "Ti-xas tughi guys'" camne in, and.
as if it h'i! hle-in a lun.ch ef wid aunicmals in thure. he
shouted lut: i " -.iwl up chain-mgang"-, and never before
hadl I. nir ciy partnc-rs seen annvone move so fast as
ttlhiise- ipr hslaves did when that giuard appeared at the
d ,r. In a sec.ccnd they were all in line except one, who
happened to move a little slow and say: "I ain't going
Whilst the others, about fifty, were putting on tin
big heavy chanis, with a shackle and lock on each foot,
this man was beaten until he became aeomscioms, and
in that condition the chain was put on his feet and he
was taken out into one of the wagons, and taken to
work with the bunch.
Out at the work if Anyone "looked at the sun," w
the prisoners called it, a club, a pick-handle or the
bat' of a gun would soon land on their head or back.
Among the fifty on the chain-gang, there were sev
eral who were serving two hundred days, jpt because
they were penniless, not having the price of a bed,
and were picked up for vagrancy. It was said that
such a high sentence was given these to keep others
away, from coming to the great glorious State of
Texas-to the City of El Paso.
As they were full-handed on the chaingang we three
were let out, promising to leave town.
In the chain gang were also two Mexican boys be
tween eleven and thirteen years old, having the heavy
chains on them, and 'working there all day. Four
more children were in there, from eight years'okl
and up, and those children were whipped several
times during the day with a big, heavy leather whip.
They were taken into a private room and there beaten
by that whip so their cries could be heard way out
on the street.
Such are the condition in one of the Jails in the
State of Texas, and this brutality is going on against
men who never protested against the present system.
They are handled as if they were <wild animals. Many
men come in there in good health, but leave there all
broken down, spreading disease wherever they go.
In another jail in Texas are some of our fellow
workers, charged with murder, waiting for trial, and
waiting for the workers of America to come along with
their helping hand in defending them. Their only
crime is that they have been loyal to their class. When
you consider their cases, also consider the above facts
about one of the Jails in Texas. Put yourself in their
place and see whether you would like to be tortured
all your lives in such hell-holes as are the jails in
SHINGLE WEAVERS CALLED.
SOME ASPECTS OF THE PROPOSED STRIKE.
WHAT POSITION WILL THE SHINGLE
WEAVERS TAKE IN CASE THE PROPOSED
In my last article, I showed the position that the
I. W. W. had taken on the eight-hour agitation in
the past, and, also the position they would, no doubt,
take in any future move that might be made towards
establishing, in the lumber woods, a shorter work
day. I showed that it was not a question of what
position ,we are going to take, or have taken, but
what position are the unorganized Woodsmen going
to take? And, what position are the Shingle Weavers
going to take?
I shall make no attempt at profecy. I admit that
I do not know what position the Weavers will take.
All that I can do in writing this article is to state
the conditions under which the Weavers are working
and let you draw your own conclusions.
The leaders of the Shingle Weavers Union claim
t(, have a majority of the Weavers, yes, a large ma
jority organized in the Shingle mills. Now if their
claims are true, then /why do they not shorten the
work-day for the Weavers? They are working at
piece work, and the difference is very hlittle to the
loss, whether he works two, or whether he works
three shifts in twenty-four hours. The cost of cut
ting shingles remains almost the same, the only dif
ference will be found in the two or three day men
whom he would have to add to h'ls crew.
The Weavers make anywhere from $2.50 per day
to $8.00, according to spe.ed and skill in the handling
the job at which they are working. This is on the
basis of a t-n hour day, Long hours in the Shingle
Mills nmrans that the Weavers have more time, to
cut more Shingles. to make a larger pay cheek. A
shorter work dlay means a 'orrespondingly shorter pay
chsck, and is, therefore, opposed to the interest of
those in he work bl)y piec·e work.
These, lwasls'rs, of the Shingle Weavers Inion, will
argu,'. that the Weavers dont care albout the wages
they are able to make uinler the' Ten hours dlay. This
may be true of some, but this snie is in a hopeless
minority, in the Shiniigle mills. G;o tlk to a W,'aver;
the main ar.guement advanced by him in favor of his
I'mon is. iLook at the wages the Weavers get com
paredl to that which the logger gets. Why, if you
l:ggs-rs wouJd organize as we have organized, you
might be gs'tting a wage as large as we"'. I shall not
enter into a dis.ussion of the differencee in the wage
scale of these two differe.nt branc·hes of industry. My
only purpss' in raising tlhispoint is to show the Weaver
ulip as he is. and as he argues on matters of wages and
hours. After you have conmsidred the economic in
terest of the W.aver, then you will be Ibetter able to
dletermin th' standlpint from which he reasons. Now,
listen! They tell i.s that they are better paid than
tth lggsrs'. and that the mnatts'r of wages is not the
question involved with them. If that is true, then
it must be a question of Philanthropy with them; they
nist be prompted by some Altnruistlc motive rather
than their immnediate ,conomic interest. If so, thn
why bae not these ltreAiu t msatlu tsu esprand
thesmseh bubsen, eqgsdla r inlrm i me to whn they
are taw extadiu a blstpbg hbad hare, at two dier.
eat tem im the past two yearn, rrelted agan t the
intolerable eonditiots in these woods and both times
demrded a horter woeday f WLy did the Ohieak
lay daon the ultimatum that the Weavers mns not
Join the Strike ha year? Where we the altruimn
that psueped that aet
I shall try to cover the ground in one more atioele.
The subject of the meut article will be: Bhe point the
A. F. of L. in making for in daelaring thi Strike, also
the Taeties they will try to use, with its ultimate
effect upon thg Lumber Workers.
See-Treas. N. I. U. of F. and L, W. Western Dist.
"JOHNNY GET YOUR GUN1"
Give us this day our daily bread, we prayed upon
And Jesus wept.-he knew that Uncle Trusty held
Mpn liveth not on bread alone, once from his lips
We'll pray no more, we'll take our bread (and meat
and cheese as well).
But we can think yet, think yet, T-H-I-N-K,
Think yet, Think yet, though we may not may
Just what we are thinking loud to every one
Drop your pick and shovel and take up your gun
We sent a man to Washington to represent our cause,
And afterward )we caught him eating dinner with
We formed into a mob and we demanded to be fed,
And Uncle Sammy's soldiers pumped oir bodies full
We asked for recognition, shorter hours and better
And now we're working for our bread and sixteen
hours a day.
We went on strike with folded arms, yes every
And every time they answered us with shot and
shell and gun.
A WORD TO RAILROADERS
By FRED F ,avY.
The railroad interests are stretching out feelers
to test how far public sentiment is in favor of unload
ing upon the so-called "Government of, for and by
the Peepul" the water-wrecked junk-roads.
What does such a propeet mean to the workers en
gaged in railroad transportation? Have they thought
of it ? Art they aMhar,, of the danger of government
ownership (no matter whether through confiscation
or purchase) to themselves?
Now, 'Craft Unionism has becomt a rather clumsy.
almost obsolete strike-weapon, yet it has the undis
puted right to strike; but, under government owner
ship of the railroads, with its semi-military, degrad
ing discipline, its narrow spirit of boessim, gag-rule
and general all-round curbing of individual anti
IUnion freedom, this will change.
Trying to raise wages, better conditions and redress
grievances through the strike will naturally become
unlawful for government employees, who, instead
will be presented with that h~eatuiful "right" to pe
tition a governmental railnoad business manager ii
la Postmaster General Il itch~c.k, whose main function
will be that of a slave-driv r for the grinding out of
the "service" ernough to pay the interest on the pur
c.hase price to the aristc-racy of bonded inldebtednets
and, at the same time, provide cheap transportation
(out of the workers bones, of course) for the benefit
of a rent-interest awl profit Iourgeoisie, who so mas
terfully understand how to hide behind the name
of "the people."
Are the American railway transportation workers
gbing to submit to that?
And if not, how are they going to prevent them
selves being made ,goverrnment slaves. who can then
be dire-tly driven at tlhe point of the hayonet if
they dare anssert their manhoodl ?
The way they are organized now they can do noth
ing for themselves. except protest.
Unt if. instead of b'ing organized into a hundred
self-fighting brotherhoodln. they were all in One Na
tional Industrial I'nion, they could take INTO
THEIR OWN IlANI), the usiness, of -.arrying the
produceH and commdnlnities the nation must have day
by day in order ti, live; they crnll kick tA) hell all
out.side inte.rferenee and thuns gelt into the vanguard
of the revolution.
Railroad Workers! Time often has put mighty
,lesionms before certalin lmen. The way they de
e-idled gave dire-tiun to history. WE ARE THE
MAKERS OF I!sTORY,! I' WE MAKE IT; ANI)
WE ('AN MAKE IT. IF WE ARE MEN.
It is soon tirne for you to chosos between govern
mental slavery and sove.re-ign nanhest. The latter
c'an only .ore through voullrsilves by organizing inti
the ()ne Big I'ni,,n of Rtailrouad Transportation
Workers. Only this way freedom lies.
Which is your c·hic,-e?