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189. What was the Western Federation of Miners?
An industrial union of mine workers that embraced all working classifications necessary to the production and treatment of minerals. At first it included coal miners as well as metal miners, and coke workers as well as mill and smelter employees. This was one of the most militant labor organizations in America. Its decline was due to a campaign of destruction directed by agents of the Mine Operators' Association.
190. When was the W. F. of M. organized?
Following the Coeur d'Alene strike of 1892. Previous to that time the metal and coal miners of the west were organized in local unions. The results of the Coeur d'Alene strike showed the need for greater unity, and the W. F. of M. was brought into existence. It had a brilliant history in the battle of American labor until reactionary influence gained control of its machinery. only a vestige of it is left to provide a nucleus with which it is hoped to defeat or delay the rise of a worthy successor to the W. F. of M. of the nineties, and the first five years of the twentieth century.
191. With what events was the W. F. of M. connected?
With the Moyer-Haywood-Pettibone case and the formation of the Industrial Workers of the World. It also assisted in the starting of the Western Labor Union.
192. What was the American Labor Union?
An organization that aimed at organizing the unskilled elements in American industry as the basis of a working class union.
193. What became of the A. L. U.?
It became a constituent part of the I. W. W. in 1905.
194. What was the United Brotherhood of Railway Employes?
An organized protest against craft division in the railroad industry. It was dissolved into the I. W. W. in 1905.
195. What do we find in our sketch of American unionism?
That politics is deadly to unionism.
196. What instances prove this?
Beginning with the Mechanics' Union of Trade Societies in Philadelphia up to the Knights of Labor, politics killed every promising union movement.