Chronicles of Boone County

User Tools

Site Tools



This shows you the differences between two versions of the page.

Link to this comparison view

labor_leader [2019/03/11 16:10] (current)
hdelaney created
Line 1: Line 1:
 +======Torture of a Pacifist======
 +By Hillary Delaney
 +Each year, Labor Day brings parades, barbeques and the last “hurrah” of summertime. ​ As we enjoy a day off work and school to celebrate, the history of this holiday is often forgotten.
 +The labor movement began to grow in America soon after the [[Civil War]], picking up momentum in the [[1880s]] through calls for reform and organization of workers. ​  This was a largely popular movement, and localities began to hold celebrations and parades in honor of fair labor. ​ By [[1894]], the Labor Day holiday was recognized in 23 states, prompting Congress to pass an act declaring a federal holiday on the first Monday each September, set aside to recognize American workers.  ​
 +The cause of workers’ rights brought controversy,​ and began to turn violent in the [[1910s]]. ​ When the United States entered WWI, the cause of war and the labor movement began to collide. ​ Many labor activists disagreed with the draft, and striking workers in industries necessary to the war effort brought an angry response from proponents of the war.  ​
 +On a late October evening in 1917, one of these leaders suffered harm and humiliation for the cause. ​ The pastor of the Vine Street Congregational Church, Herbert S. Bigelow, was kidnapped upon his arrival to a speaking engagement at a Socialist meeting in Newport. ​ A crusader for social and political reform, Bigelow was a well-known pacifist and champion of workers’ rights and was targeted for his outspoken views.  ​
 +Several men handcuffed Bigelow and threw him into a waiting car.  Once held captive, Bigelow was gagged, his feet were bound and a bag was placed over his head.  He recalled a long drive out to the hills of Northern Kentucky, where he finally was taken from the car by his captors, his hood and bindings removed. ​ Bigelow described being near a railroad and a schoolhouse in the country, though he had little sense of the nearest town. There was a long line of men, 25-40 by Bigelow’s estimation, all wearing masks and long white robes. ​ Bigelow was stripped to the waist, given scores of lashes with a bullwhip, and covered in crude oil before being released.
 +Somehow, he made his way, on foot, to Florence, where he saw the sign for a “Dr. Grant.” ​ The Doctor and his family cared for Bigelow as he would a “lifelong friend,” according to the wounded man.    ​
 +Bigelow was severely traumatized by the attack; he remained largely uninvolved in public life for a number of years. ​ In the mid-1920s, his passion for social justice began to return; he advocated for political justice as individual citizen, then as a Cincinnati Councilman, later as a U.S. Congressman.
 +=====More Information=====
 +=====Related Topics=====
 +  * [[Articles of Interest]]
 +====Related Websites====
 +Read more about Herbert S. Bigelow [[http://​www.ohiohistorycentral.org/​w/​Herbert_S._Bigelow|here]]
 +    ​
labor_leader.txt · Last modified: 2019/03/11 16:10 by hdelaney