“Laurie Cohen’s trade union career began in the select fraternity of his craft with the Marble and Stone Workers’ Union….”
Canadian Labour Movement 1812 – 1902, The (Eugene A. Forsey)
Canadian Labour History: 1850 -1999, Canadian Museum of History
Center for Human Resources and Labor Studies, University of Minnesota
“…was a commission created by the US Congress on August 23, 1912. The commission studied work conditions throughout the industrial United States between 1912-1915. The final report of the Commission, published in eleven volumes in 1916, contain tens of thousands of pages of testimony from a wide range of witnesses….”
“The Granite Cutters’ National Union was organized on Clark’s Island, Knox county, Maine, in 1877, the purpose being the advancement of the interests of the trade generally. The first thing to which the attention of the organization was directed was the abolition of the truck system of trading at stores owned and operated by the companies for which the cutters worked. When that was done the union turned its attention to the shortening of the hours of labor. Nine hours is now the maximum day’s work, and at Chicago and everywhere west of that city, except St. Cloud, an eight-hour day has been established.
“The founder of the order was Thomas H. Murch, who was afterward chosen the Union’s first national secretary, resigning his office upon his election to congress from Maine.
“The organization has but one salaried officer, the secretary of the national union. The principle of direct legislation is carried out to the full. Any member who desires the enactment of any legislation places his ideas on paper and transmits them through the local union to the national secretary, who places them before the national union, through the various local unions, for their action. The executive business of the national union is placed in the hands of a national union committee of three, selected every two years by vote of the union at large. The work they do for the union is paid for at the union scale. They are selected from the members of the local union where the seat of government of the national union is located. The union headquarters is moved every two years, the selection of the new location being made by vote of the membership of the various locals. The headquarters is now at Concord, N. H., and Josiah B. Dyer is the national secretary. He is also editor and publisher of the Granite Cutters’ Journal, the organ of the national union.
“Wherever there is work in the granite industry, a charter is procured and the state organizer is summoned to organize a local union. This union has the care of all matters relating to the granite cutters, and their interests within the jurisdiction of the union.
“One good provision of the national union is the burial benefit of $150, which is paid to the widow or is used to defray funeral expenses and pay any outstanding bills a deceased member may have contracted during his last sickness.”
According to the “About Us” section of the web site, the International Union or Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers was founded in 1865, making it one of the oldest continuous unions in North America. This union represents “…the most highly skilled trowel trades craftworkers across the United States and Canada including bricklayers, stone and marble masons, cement masons, plasterers, tilesetters, terrazzo and mosaic workers, and pointers/ cleaners/ caulkers….”
Labor History Links, presented by the AFL-CIO.
Labor History Links, developed by labor historian Rosemary Feurer for the Labor and Working Class History Association.
Includes links to labor unions in the following locations: Albania, Antigua & Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Egypt, Ethiopia, Germany, Ghana, India, Iraq, Japan, Malaysia, Maldives, Nauru, Niger, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Senegal, South Africa, Switzerland, Tanzania, the United Kingdom, & the United States.
From the web site: “The Labor Trail is the product of a joint effort to showcase the many generations of dramatic struggles and working-class life in the Chicago area's rich and turbulent past. The Trail's neighborhood tours invite you to get acquainted with the events, places, and people -- often unsung -- who have made the city what it is today.”
“Paving-Block Cutters Lockout and Strike of May 1892 against the Granite Manufacturers in New England,” compiled by Peggy B. Perazzo, June, 2015.
From the web site: “Samuel Gompers was the nation’s leading trade unionist in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and president of the American Federation of Labor from 1886 until his death in 1924. “Our movement is of the working people, for the working people, by the working people,” he said. “There is not a right too long denied to which we do not aspire.... there is not a wrong too long endured that we are not determined to abolish.’”
“A Short History of American Labor,” adapted from March 1981, AFL-CIO American Federationist, Prof. Gerald Zahavi.
From the web site: “The Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives at New York University form a unique, internationally-known center for scholarly research on Labor and the Left. The primary focus is the complex relationship between trade unionism and progressive politics and how this evolved over time. Archival, print, photograph, film, and oral history collections describe the history of the labor movement and how it related to the broader struggle for economic, social, and political change.”
From the web site: “Trade unions have played, and will continue to play, a decisive role in shaping economic and social developments in Britain - yet much of their history is at present unknown and inaccessible to the public. These images provide a dynamic new resource allowing us to connect with the working lives of our predecessors, helping to analyse historical developments and to build for the future.”
The Union Movement's Proud Past – AFL-CIO
“The United Operative Masons and Granite Cutters’ Union’s papers form part of the Union of Construction, Allied Trades and Technicians archive. The initial deposit was made in 1974 and accruals are listed under the entry for the Union of Construction, Allied Trades and Technicians.”
“The union was founded in 1888 as the Aberdeen Operative Masons and Stonecutters’ Society. It changed its name in 1896. In 1920 the United Operative Masons' Association of Scotland, the Associated Paviors’ Federal Union, the Scottish Amalgamated Society of Mosaic and Encaustic Tile Fixers, Marble Workers and Fireplace Builders and the United Operative Masons and Granite Cutters’ Union amalgamated to form the Building and Monumental Workers' Association of Scotland. Reference: William Diack, Rise and progress of the granite industry in Aberdeen (1949).”
“Artistry and activism: Stonecutters have made their mark in communities, workplaces,” by Randy Croce (Workday Minnesota), December 21, 2009.
Description: Transcriptions from the Granite Cutters’ Journal, a monthly publication of the Granite Cutters National Union. Articles include not only information on the granite industry, but also personal information on union members. Branch reports are from the U. S. and Canada, but there are often references to other countries such as Scotland and England. The Journal was first published in April 1877.
This article describes the need to mass produce the Civil War headstones rather than by individual stone carvers. Contracts for the headstones and bases were given out to several different quarries and companies in Vermont, Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, Kansas, and Tennessee. The need for large numbers of markers also increased the use of the sandblasting process to speed up carving the names on the stones. Both mass production the sandblasting process caused great changes in the work of the stone carvers, which led to demands by the stone workers’ unions, such as the eight-hour work day.
(from The Samual Gompers Papers web site - Glossary - Individual Organizations section.)
The Granite Cutters' International Union of the United States and the British Provinces of America was formed in 1877. In 1880 it changed its name to the Granite Cutters' National Union of the United States of America and in the following year participated in the formation of the FOTLU. It joined the AFL in 1888, but left the Federation in 1890, rejoining in 1895. In 1905 it adopted the name Granite Cutters' International Association of America.