The Molly Maguires: Fighting for Justice

Early on the morning of Wednesday. SeptemĀ­ber 1, 1875, a young English-born mine foreman started from his Schuylkill County residence to the Shenandoah coal colliery where he was employed. A gunshot pierced the air. Scrambling for cover behind a neighbor’s house, he was met by another assassin who drew his revolver and fired. Struck in the groin, the young man staggered blindly and fell to...
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To Organize the Unorganized

The year 1919 was marked by an explosion of activity in the American labor movement. Discontent surged among industrial workers as promises of wage increases and improved working conditions, made by employers during World War One, failed to materialize. Telegraph operators, theater ushers and textile workers joined firemen, policemen and dock workers to oppose some of the country’s most...
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That Magnificent Fight for Unionism: The Somerset County Strike of 1922

During 1920 and 1921, western Pennsylvania’s coal mine operators campaigned vigorously to slash wages of the miners they employed. Because demand for coal declined after World War One the operators were forced to reduce production, resulting in stack, or in some cases, the complete shutdown of operations. Many miners drifted to factory jobs in nearby cities, or simply clung to hope -and...
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It’s a Family Affair – Six Generations of Martin Guitars

For legions of guitar players and admirers of finely crafted musical instruments, the small town of Nazareth in eastern Pennsylvania’s Lehigh Valley resembles its biblical namesake. It is the holiest ground, a Mecca, the wellhead of guitar dreams, aspirations and, yes, even obsessions. Nazareth is the home of C.F. Martin & Co., considered the world’s premier maker of steel-string...
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Martin Ritt Takes on The Molly Maguires

Far from the glitter and glamour of Hollywood, in a remote mountain range of Pennsylvania, the film industry’s best and brightest gathered in the late 1960s to make a film that has been described as a dismal financial failure and, ironically, an extraordinary critical sucĀ­cess. Before cameras whirred in and around the communities of Hazleton, Luzerne County, Jim Thorpe, Carbon County,...
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