Jim Larkin: Labor Union Activis

Labor was a serious thing near the turn of the 20th century. There was too much work to be done in dangerous conditions, for too little pay. This is where James Larkin comes into perspective. He was born on January 21st 1876 in Liverpool, England. While his childhood transitioned to adulthood Larkin gained a colorful history of work experience. Learn more about Jim Larkin: http://spartacus-educational.com/IRElarkin.htm and http://www.irishexaminer.com/lifestyle/artsfilmtv/books/the-definitive-biography-of-big-jim-larkin-372254.html

Jim Larkin first joined the National Union of Dock Laborers in 1905. After fallout in 1907, he was deported to Dublin, Ireland. Here he would establish The Irish Transport and General Workers’ Union.

This was satisfying some of Dublin’s need to have an Irish-based revolution; at the same time considerably quenching the need for unions internationally. An activist that was passionate about his cause, Larkin was answerable for a group of workforce strikes that followed.

The success of the ITGWU was a major part of spurring a large-scale labor movement. Around 1911 Larkin would attempt to advertise his message of workplace harmony by converting the ITGWU headquarters into a center for the community. Read more: Jim Larkin | Wikipedia and Jim Larkin | Biography

‘The Irish Worker’ first published in May 1911 proved prosperous and improved Jim’s credibility generously. Around this time the union’s enrollment jumped upwards a massive 10,000 members.

Jim met his dissolution in 1913 with the Dublin Lockout. William Martin Murphy, boss of the tram business, disagreed with Larkin’s beliefs and requested to lay off several employees. Consequently, 100,000 workers went on strike for over seven months.

The Dublin Lockout left Jim drained and he straggled over to the United States again in 1914. Truthfully, Jim wanted to reinvent himself as a public speaker. Just like many situations before, Jim met some resistance.

A pro-German stance prevented him from effectively conveying socialism. So he simply made a switch and turned his energy into transforming socialism into communism.

Jim was arrested and charged with criminal anarchy in 1919. After a short time incarcerated Larkin was pardoned in 1923, but this didn’t sway his recently developed madness. His behavior cost what was left of his already hard-earned career. The ITGWU cast him out in 1924. It seemed as though everything were falling apart.

Sadly, Jim Larkin died January 30th 1947 after falling through a floor undergoing construction. Nevertheless, Larkin’s impacts still reverberate to this day. Labor laws everywhere are constructed on the base of a fair work environment. He has perpetually altered the views of laboring workplaces.

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