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Workmen's advocate. (New Haven, Conn.) 1883-1891, June 29, 1889, Image 1

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Prof Richard T Blj 'ZZ
Jonni Eopktoi UolvetUljr
gifth ca, go. 26
Xcur SJotk and 2Jcw gaum, jSatutdag, Jfunc 29, 1889
Ue 3 GtuU
-Coal Miners In Braidwood Strike aud
The great strike of the coal niiuers in
Germany, alTecting, as it doeB, thous
ands of families, as well as business in
terest in other countries, has led the
workers, where organized, in all civil
ued countries to send aid to the poor
families of the strikers. But we can
show that the miners of monarchical
Germany are only on a par with some
of our own "sovereign" citizens when
they attempt to go contrary to the will
of Capital. Thus we shall record a
condition of affairs in Draidwood, Illi
nois, which was written for and pub
lished unblushingly by a capitalist pa
per in New York. Two months ago,
before the strike, Braidwood had a pop
ulation of about 5,000, all dependent di
rectly or indirectly upon the mines.
To-day not an ounce of coal is being
mined, and the awful blight of famine
is upon the little city.
Three weeks ago a committee consist
ing of two representatives of each na
tionality was appointed to take care of
the distressed. This committee has
had its hands more than full ever since
its appointment. The population of
Braidwood is a heterogenous one, com
prising persons of all nationalities. Of
the heads of families employed in
the mines there are 500 English, Scotch,
Irish and Americans, the last named
being few in proportion. There are
about 100 colored men, 800 Italians and
150 Bohemians and Poles. As hi the
case in most industrial communities,
the families are large. Of thirty appli
cants for aid to-day the average num
ber in a family was six. The single men
have pulled up stakes and quit, and the
town is face to face with an economic
problem far beyond its power to grapple
Pitiful stories of the destitution there
are told. In one house a reporter found
a Scotch family of ten absolutely with
out food of any kind. The father is a
steady hard-working man. There was
not in the little cottage a scrap of stuff
upon which a dollar could be realized.
A sick baby fourteen weeks old lay in a
rough cradle. Between her tears the
mother, with reluctance born of stub
born pride of her race, told her miser
able story. She had eight children, the
youngest being the sick baby. A char
itable doctor had attended the child,
but the necessary medicine for the little
one could not be obtained any longer.
The druggists had shut down on any
further credit.
In another house was found a family
of ten, in which the conditions wer
similar, except that none were suffering
from illness. The man of the house in
this case was a German who formerly
worked in the mines, but became inca
pacitated by ill health and lias since
gained a living by peddling. He rents a
small cottage with a considerable gar
den, and the latter furnishes the sole
supply for his family. Asked as to how
they lived, he said: ""We have potatoes
and lettuce. In the morning the chil
dren have some bread and go to school.
They do not come home to dinner, and
at night they have lettuce and bread.
Soon the potatoes will be good, and
then they will have plenty."
"Don't you have any meat ?"
"We have not had any meat since
New Years. We have no money, I pay
$5 a month for this place, and it has a
big garden. If the potatoes come out
all right then we can live. I should like
some flour."
At another home was found a Ger
man woman with seven children. Her
husband left two weeks ago to find
work, and bhe has not heard from him
since. She had not a morsel of food of
any kind in the house, and the bare
footed children were crying with hun
ger. This woman got some Hour and
other articles from the relief store later
in the day.
In a cottage near the Eureka Mine?,
there lives an Englishman named Case,
who has three children, and a wife who
is dying of consumption. The husband
is a steady, hard-working man and a
flret-class miner. He said that his aver
age earnings from January to May had
not been more than $17 per month.
He bought his little home for f 150 on
payments of $1,00 per month, and he
still owes $98 on this account. Besides
that, he owes $14 for medicine, and he
has not a bit of food in the house. He
was given a small order for groceries by
the Town Supervisor, but when offered
some potatoes by an agent of the Relief
Committee he declined them, saying
that the product of his own garden
would soon be ready, and that there
were others more needy than he.
At the Relief Headquarters on Main
street there stood in line for hours yes
terday not less than 150 men, women
and cnildren white and black. Ger
mans, Italians, French, Scotch, English
and half a dozen more nationalities
were represented. s From every one
questioned the same reply was elicited:
"We have nothing in the house to eat.
If we can only get some flour the chil
dren will not starve." The situation is
intensified by the fact that the families
are so large. Six, eight and ten chil
dren below working age appears to be the
average. The children go to school
barefooted and ragged, and come homejto
receive a scrap of bread and any garden
stufl" which may be available. There is
little or no sickness as yet, but it is
feared that using the new potatoes be
fore they are actually fit for food may
result disastrously.
The measures for the relief of these
distressed people which have been taken
up to date are miserably inadequate.
Local tradesmen have sent in Hour and
a few groceries. Some money has been
obtained from Joliet, and $500 from
trade organizations and Socialists in
Chicago. Yesterday forty wicks of flour
arrived, and this was distributed in lots
of twelve pounds each to those who
could live no longer without it. But
twelve pounds of flour for a family of
ten hungry children counts for little.
An aged Scotch woman who keeps the
Cottage Hotel, and who is the oldest
settler in Braidwood, tells with tears in
her eyes how she relieved the immedi
ate wants of certain of her neighbors.
Another llady, the wife of a business
man, makes soup and bakes bread every
day, which she distributes to the needy.
As usual, in all cases of this kind the
obtrusive and persistent come to the
front, while the actual sufferers stay at
home and starve. This is particularly
true of the English and Scotch citizens
who stick out to the last before making
their wants known. It is only when
the children clamor for bread that
these people can be brought to face the
inevitable and apply for relief. One in
stance of this fact may illustrate: A
woman with seven children tells how
she sent her eldest girl to the relief
store with a requeet for some flour. It
happened that the last had lieen given
out, and the child was told to come
again next day. "I didn't mind not get
ting the flour, though we had no bite in
the house to eat, but I could not stand
having my child turned away like a
beggar." That is what she said, and that
is the spirit of the poor creatures who
are starving to-day in the State of Illi
nois, and within 00 miles of Chicago.
Socialist Agitation on the Common
and in the Churches.
The usual weekly agitation meeting
of the American Section was held on
the Common last Sunday, and the au
dience was a large one, Mr, Norris, of
the Society of Christian Socialists, acted
as chairman and made the opening ad
dress. Mrs. Merrifield followed in a
short criticism of the competitive sys
tem, aud Mr. Lynch spoke in very plain
language, which was well received by
the audience. Carl Friede made a rat
tling speech, and pictured to the audi
ence in eloquent language what the con
dition of the people would be under a
socialistic regime, and appealed to the
large crowd present to better the condi
tions of themselves and families, by
throwing off their allegiance to the two
old corrupt parties, and cast their for
tunes with the Socialist Labor Party,
the only political party that recognizes
the existence of a class struggle for the
people's emancipation.
Mr, David Taylor closed the meeting
with appropriate remarks. A good deal
of our literature was distributed during
the meeting. Among the audience were
noticed several members of the German
Section and our veteran, Geo. J. Moul
ton. The semi-annual meeting of the
American Section will be held at the
rooms of the organizer, Mrs. Merrifield,
Tuesday evening, July 2, at 8 p. m.
sharp. Election of officers and the
reading of the reports will be the prin
cipal business.
To show our comrades all over the
country how Socialism, in Boston, at
least, has come to be looked upon as a
thing of considerable importance; indeed
we need but mention that the Herald,
the leading daily of New England,
hardly ever allows a day to pass with
out having an editorial on Socialism,
not always favorable to us, to be sure,
but they are willing to argue the ques
tion with us, and that is something that
augurs well for the movement. Ever
since Dr. Bellamy commenced to preach
Christian Socialism in his church the
seating capacity has been taxed to its
utmost limit, so much so that in the
fall he will commence the erection of a
more commodious edifice to hold his
rapidly-increasing congregation. Rev.
Dr. Bliss, also, is battling nobly for the
rights of humanity, both in his church
and in his paper, Ihe Dawn.
Comrade M. Lynch will contribute an
article to the August number of the
Comrade Cyrus F. Willard and his
charming wife are going to Eurojie next
month. Don voyage 1
Comrade Norris, the business manager
of The Dawn, and his estimable wife, are
workicg in harmony with our Section
in making our meetings on the Common
a success.
American Section and South West
Branch Meetings Intruders.
Peace, gentle peace, spread her snowy
pinions, and, descending, hovered lov
ingly over the little band of Socialists
assembled last Sunday afternoon at
Waverly Hall. A stranger happening
in might have been pardoned for mis
taking the affair for a Methodist class
meeting. The local reporter, not being
accustomed to the odor of sanctity
with which the atmosphere seemed
redolent, and apparently apprehensive
that he might be called upon at any
moment to relate his "experience,"
fidgeted' nervously in his seat, tried to
fill in his time by scanning the column
of a wicked capitalistic journal, gazing
ever and anon mournfully and long
ingly toward the entrance, inspired by
the vain hope, as he afterwards in
formed your correspondent, that Mrs.
Parsons and her valiant cohorts might,
even at the eleventh hour, conclude to
put in an appearance and infuse a little
wickedness and excitement into the too
decorous and orderly proceedings. Fin
ally, in utter desperation, he seized iiis
hat and other personal effects, includ
ing a not very voluminous budget of
notes, and made a hasty exit, mentally
vowing that nothing short of an anar
chistic riot should ever again induce
him to grace Waverly Hall with his
journalistic presence.
The above, reduced to plain, cold
prose, simply means that our anarchist
friends arrived yesterday at the very
sensible conclusion that the SVaverly
Hall "grapes" were exceedingly "sour,
and not worth the trouble of plucking.
They therefore repaired to a well
known West Side resort, where they
dispensed their eloquence to more ap
preciative ears than they have recently
found at the Socialists headquarters,
and had, it is understood, an excellent
The exercises at the "Waverly" were,
as usual, of a varied and interesting
character, , and consisted of sundry reso
lutions upon topics of local interest,
discussions upon the same, and a short
address by Mr. Martin, a delegate from
the mining country, who gave a very
clear and forcible statement of the
troubles in that locality, and the causes
of them. He spoke of the conditions
imposed by the corporation upon its em
ployees, the agreement which they were
required to sign and its humiliating
terms, almost equivalent to a confession
of voluntary vassalage. He declared
that the scale of wages proj)osed by the
corporation virtually amounted to a de
duction of 40 per cent, from the almost
starving rates formerly paid. Help had
been received, but up to the present
time it had been insufficient to relieve,
to any appreciable extent, the suffering
and destitution prevailing in their
He was informed that our committee
had on hand a sum amounting to about
sixteen dollars, which might still be aug
mented, collected and contributed by
our members for the Miners' Relief Fund.
He was instructed to endeavor to make
his co-laborers realize that by a judicious
exercise of the powers of the ballot, by
wise and concerted political action, they
might overthrow their existing condi
tions and place themselves hereafter in
an independent position. He was also
presented with a box of our literature,
which he promised to distribute among
his fellow workers on his return.
Comrade Morgan offered resolutions,
and appropriate and interesting re
marks concerning the situation of the
miners and other matters, and Mrs.
Woodman then read a paper on "The
Canadian Annexation Problem and Its
International Significance," which gave
rise to an exceedingly interesting discus
sion, which was participated in by
Comrades- Morgan, Berlyn, Adams and
Hamilton. The last-named gentleman
is, we believe, the only genuine, full
blooded American on the working-force,
the others being, respectively, English,
Scotch, Dutch, German and Nova Sco
tian. Mr. Hamilton's remarks were,
therefore, exceedingly interesting from
an American standpoint, and tended to
prove that patriotism and cosmopoli
tanism are not necessarily at variance.
The South West Side Branch, S. L.
P., at a regular meeting on the lth
inst. discussed plans of agitation. The
following resolutions were adopted:
"Wiiereas, Hardly a week passes in
which accidents do not occur on the
Yerkes street railways; and
"Whereas, Our citizens are thus con
tinually placed in jeopardy, and a num
ler of workmen have thus lost their
lives, while some have been severely
injured, and these occurrences are due
to the criminal negligence of the con
tractors and Yerkes' greed for gain;
"Whereas, Such a murderous and ex
ploiting system can only be abolished by
the people owning the street railways;
"Resolved, That we call upon the city
to obtain possession of the street rail
ways and operate them in the interest
of the people; and
"Rezdved, That we call upon all
workers and citizens of Chicago to ex
amine the Platform of the Socialist La
bor Party, and if they find it worthy to
join faid Party."
At the next meeting of this Branch
Comrade Langner will speak.
A question of interest to the members
of the organizations connected with the
Trades Assembly is, where did the
money come from to arrange the pro
jected grand demonstration and picnic
on Ihe Fourth of July ? The Trades As
sembly has no money, it is said, and
among the speakers advertised are
Mayor Cregier, Frank Lawler and vari
ous corrupt politicians. Now, why do
these fellows want to speak on this oc
casion? Do the workmen of Chicago
suppose that these men do this for
nothing? Do they suppose that an
empty treasury could furnish the
funds? Or did the politicians furnish
money, so that they could have a glori
ous opportunity to pose as working
men's friends and throw dust in their
eyes? Anyway, where did the money
come from?
How Political Heelers Try to Keep
I'm Their Reputation as Workmen.
A small clique of bogus Chicago labor
reformers of the George Schilling stripe
have "elected" one George Detweiler as
a delegate to the Paris Labor Congress.
Information from Chicago shows that
this Detweiler is a character that should
not be admitted to a labor congress. A
small number of "professional working
men" not wageworkers are his "con
stituents." The man himself is notori
ously untrustworthy. For instance,
while editor and part owner of the
Knijhtu of Labor, a weekly paper, lie
published, immediately after the ren
dering of the verdict in the anarchist
cise such a glowing indorsement of the
infamous verdict that it was repub
lished in a large number of capitalistic
papers as expressing the Indorsement of
the Order of the K. of L. Soon offer
he caused it to be understood that the
friends of the condemned men could se
cure a controlling interest in his paper
for about $2,000. Capt. Black, attorney
for the "anarchists," Frank A. Stauber,
nu, tjahor of the Defense Committee, Al
bert Florus and C. G. Dexon (elected by
the United Labor Party to the State
Legislature in TH8ti) took this bait, and
signed a note for the sum of $J,000, in
exchange for which they fondly hoped
to secure a majority of the stock of the
paper. Detweiler sold the note, and
refused to recognize the right of the
signers to any stock or control. When
the note came due the four persons
named were compelled to pay the
s'.OOO. At the close of the case Mr.
Florus vigorously expressed his indig
nation; his lawyer stopped him and
told him that he ought to consider him
self lucky, adding by way of consola
tion that this Detweiler had gotten the
best of him (the lawyer) some time pre
vious to the tune of j $10,000. During
the last election campaign this same
Detweiler was one of the chief engineers
of the Boodle Convention which nomi
nated the real estate speculator, Gross,
as a workingman's candidate for mayor.
In this connection it was currently re
ported that he received a large amount
of money from the "republican" man
agers to run the political "labor" move
ment, and the many thousands of his
paper that were freely distributed dur
ing the campaign seem to prove the
statement true.
This fellow only poses as a delegate
to prove to the politicians that he has a
"pull," so that be can "strike" them
for boodle at future elections. It is of
little consequence to the honest men of
Chicago whether he deceives the "re
publican" or "democratic" election
managers or not, but such a rascal
should not be admitted to a labor con
gress here or elsewhere. Other Ameri
can delegates, no matter what bona fide.
later organization they represent, should
protest against Detweiler's admission to
the Paris Congress.
On Sunday, June 30, a monster picnic
will take place at Germania Garden and
Hall for the benefit of our Arbeiter
Zeitung. This paper is gaining rapidly
here, and is under control of our Sec
tion as far as this city is concerned. A
tine program will be rendered. Com
rade Shevitch of New York is an
nounced to speak.
The German TypOjjraphia of this city
is engaged in fighting with Dr. (?) Mack,
editor and proprietor at the Daily Volk
blatt. A boycott is placed upon this
rat sheet, and has been pushed so vigor
ously lately that the so-called doctor
will have to prescrile for himself,
The "republican" party managers vir
tually control the Volkxblutt, and are
very anxious to have the boycott re
moved. It is thi only German daily
paper here, being like our "independ
ent" Evening Times, at the service of the
highest bidder.
The failure of the car drivers' strike
made these fellows bold again; so, last
week, they arrested Otto Hanish, of the
Typographia, and a comrade of ours,
under the infamous conspiracy laws.
Police Justice Keener, a tool of the "re
publican" party, was a tine sample of
a Lord Jeffries, as he remarked to our
friend Hanish "if he (the latter) had
written nil in The -Ijix-d" (a periodical
published in the interest of the boycott
ly the typos) "he would like to send
him up for fifteen years. Men advocat
ing the boycott should be expelled from
this country." A hearing was set for
Wednesday, June L't!th, aud the pris
oner put under $1,000 bail. The trial
will not come off under this impartial
judge, as a jury trial will be demanded.
The organized usurers known as the
Rochester Board of Trade and Com
merce have circulated petitions aud
subscription lists for more militia here.
This is also the result of the late strike,
and shows what bad consciences our
capitalists have. The subscription is
headed by one of our greatest manu
facturers and president of said hoard,
Wm. S. Kimball, who owns a large
cigarette factory. This gentleman (?)
undoubtedly fears his wage slaves might
rebel some day, and seeing his huge
factory not well enough protected, con
sequently clamors for militia. oiss.
At the regular meeting of the Ameri
can Section, S. L. P., held at Morning
Star Hall, June -'5, the following officers
were elected for '.he ensuing term:
Organizer, W. II. Bishop, 010 Sartain
street; financial secretary, Jacob Senges;
recording secretary, Julius Neckcr;
treasurer, Oswald Mai.
General Francis A. Walker, the Su
perintendent of the last census, asks:
"What shall we tell the working clas
ses?" and in the course of his answer
says: "Whatever we may tell, we shall
no$, tell them as twenty or thirty years
ago we surely should have done, that the
possible amount of their compensation
is limited by the 'wage fund,' that the
remuneration of their labor is irrespec
tive of their own industrial character,
irrespective of the present product or
industry. The reason the political
economist of the old school won't toll
the working class what they used to, is
the working classes are thinking for
themselves; they won't accept the chaff.
They are saying: 'Wo are much the lar
gest class; we produce all the wealth
and have the least of it to enjoy, and
consequently we have no use for those
who are trying to keep us contented
with this state of things by teaching us
that it is inevitable, therefore right, and
that we must not make any effort to
change it. The fiat of human neces
sity has gone forth, the new philosophy
of humanity for humanity is being sub
stituted for the old which is the rule
ai.d ruin of the masses for the honor
and glory of the few."
The Washington GmfUman said in its
issue of last week that every indication
seems to point to a strike on the Union
Pacific Railroad. Articles of confedera
tion have been signed by the local as
semblies of the Brotherhood of Engi
neers, Firemen, Brakemen and Switch
men, and the Knights of Labor, pledging
mutual support in the event of a strike.
The question at issue is the schedule of
wages applying to the Kansas Central.
A new schedule has been formulated
which the men will not accept. They
demand that the former schedule be re
stored. The Grievance Committee of
the Brotherhood of Engineers and the
officers of the Union Pacific have as
yet arrived at no satisfactory settlement
of the discovery, and a walk-out all
along the line is inevitable.
Chief Arthur, on the other hand,
says there will be no strike of engineers
on the Union Pacific, but that the
trouble will be amicably settled by the
committee having it in charge.
The question is, would a concession
to the members of any one of the or
ganizations involved have the effect of
inducing them to break compact with
the others? Or would concessions to
all of the organizations but one induce
them to leave that one in the lurch ? Be
sides, what is the available force the
capitalists can draw from their reserve
army of unemployed? A satisfactory
answer would be a great help to the
workmen immediately interested.
Demanding a Law to Raise the Age
for Compulsory Schooling.
The following letter from Edward
Bellamy was read at a recent meeting
of the Boston Nationalist Club. It
shows that the gifted author is a mn
of progress, as well as the possessor of a
large heart:
"First of all, we must heed the cry of
the children. We must deliver them
from the taskmasters and turn them
over to the schoolmasters. The present
school system of Massachusetts, with
its wretched twenty weeks of compul
sory attendance up to the age of four
teen, with grammar and high schools
for a few fortunate ones, is not a se
rious attempt to educate the people, aud
it is time that this was said plainly.
The age of fourteen is no time to bring
to a close the education of a prospective
sovereign of the United States and cus
todian of its liberties. Merely to raise
the age limit of compulsory schooling
to 15, 10, 17 Tor IS would, however, not
help matters, for the reason that in the
majority of instances those parents who
take their children out of school as
soon as the law is off do so because they
must, because they are themselves too
poor to support them longer in idleness.
Now, whatever others may think, Na
tionalists do not consider that the ina
bility, or even the thriftlessness, of a
parent is any sufficient reason why a
child should be condemned to the life
long serfdom of ignorance. The duty
the parent cannot and will not do to
ward his child the State must do.
"It is my earnest hope that the Na
tionalist clubs may see their way clear
to formulating and presenting to the vot
ers of the State, as a test for legislative
candidates at the next State election, a
demand for a law raising the age of com
pulsory education to at least seventeen
years, aud the school year toat4east
thirty-five weeks, with a sufficient
State provision for the support of chil
dren of indigent parents while at
school. It apitears to me that this is a
measure which all persons who hope
for the evolution of a better social
order will be prepared to support, The
children are of no party. The children
have no enemies, and surely it is most
rational to Itegin the reform of so
ciety with that portion of it which,
is most Jpln"Tif!i that is, with the
children. The advocates of all modes
and schools of reform must here agree,
for under whatever figure we may sev
erally fancy the hoped-for new order,
we must depend upon the children who
now ought to be in school, to put it
into effect. Those, on the contrary,
who disbelieve in all reform or progress,
and hold that the present heartrending
social conditions are to endure forever,
will be quite consistent in opposing the
proposed measure. If their view Is cor
rect, the schools should all be closed
and education forbidden the masses en
tirely, that, being more nearly brutal
ized, they may be less sensible of their
"The attitude of persons on all im
portant questions of improving the edu
cation of the masses will, I think, be
found to correspond quite closely with
their general belief on the larger ques
tion of the possibilities of human prog
ress. One other point I want to speak
of. The transfer to the schools of all
children under seventeen now at work
in stores, shops and factories, would
create a demand for adult labor which
would not a little relieve the present
glutted labor market. To make work
by waste is poor political economy; but
this would be to make work by saving
by saving the children."
At the meeting of the St. Paul Sec
tion, held on June lfl, it was decided to
discuss t joint Socialist picnic by the
Minneapolis ami St. Paul Sections at the
meeting to be hold in St. Paul on June
110, which is also the date of the semi
annual election of officers for the St.
Paul Section. secretary.
The New Y'ork post-otlice is the lar
gest business establishment, aflecting the
greatest number of people under the
government of the United States. It
delivers and collects every year a num
ber of letters, papers, etc., six times as
numerous as the entire population of
the Union. It handles in each year
over $85,000,000 in money order busi
ness, while its own receipts are over
$5,000,000, and the net revenue of the
government is $3,250,000. Sewsman.
Capt. Evan P. Howell, of the Atlanta
Constitution, who is a capital story tel
ler, illustrated the persistent industry
of the Chattanoogans by an anecdote of
a man in Georgia who kept bees, and,
not satisfied with their proverbial in
dustry, actually attempted to cross
them with lightning bugs, in order to
secure & continuation of honey-making
through the night. Boston Herald.

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