Category Archives: People

Charles Stewart Parnell

Born in 1846, Charles Stewart Parnell was one of the most significant Irish, if not British, politicians of the latter half of the 19th century. Coming from a wealthy Anglo-Irish landowning family with parents who were strong Irish nationalists, he … Continue reading

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Michael Davitt

Born in 1846 in County Mayo, Michael Davitt was brought up in a poor immigrant community in Lancashire in England. Though working as a laborer from the age of 9, he managed to achieve a good education. After becoming a … Continue reading

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Terence V. Powderly

Terence Powderly was born in 1849 in Pennsylvania, the son of Irish immigrants. A machinist until his late 20s, he became a union activist in the early 1870s and joined the secretive fraternal brotherhood of the Knights of Labor in … Continue reading

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Henry George

Born in Philadelphia in 1839, Henry George moved to New York, and national and international prominence, in the middle of 1880 after over a decade in the newspaper industry in California as printer, journalist, and editor. An anti-monopolistic Democrat, he … Continue reading

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Robert Blissert

Robert Blissert, a Irish-born tailor and trade unionist, emigrated from England in the late 1860s having been blacklisted in Britain for his union activities. He was a prominent activist and orator in New York through the 1870s and 1880s in … Continue reading

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Matthew Maguire

Matthew Maguire – a machinist from Paterson, New Jersey – was usually secretary of the organizations he joined and rarely appeared on the front line of the agitation he supported. If he stood on the platform, he was likely to … Continue reading

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Theodore Cuno

Theodore Cuno, born in Prussia in 1847 and an engineer by profession, was a prominent member of Marx’s International Workingman’s Association (the First International) in Europe. Exiled from Milan he moved to the US in 1870, where he worked firstly … Continue reading

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Peter J McGuire

Peter J McGuire, born in 1852 in New York City, was a carpenter and, in his early years, a political activist as well as an active labor unionist. He was a founder of the Social Workingmen’s Party of America in … Continue reading

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Central Labor Union of New York and Vicinity (CLU)

In December 1881 a meeting was called by the prominent trade unionist Robert Blissert for the new year for the purpose of ‘sending greetings and encouragement to the tenants and workingmen of Ireland in their struggle against the English feudal … Continue reading

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Labor Day

Within a few months of its establishment in early 1882, the Central Labor Union of New York and Vicinity (CLU), having acquired 50 federated organizations and 50,000 affiliated members, felt confident to take the step that would put it, and … Continue reading

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