Oklahoma Labor Unit (Oklahoma City, Okla.), Vol. 1, No. 25, Ed. 1 Saturday, December 5, 1908 Page: 1 of 6

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* W
*■ , y . 1
A Clean
Newspaper for
the Homes
FtMwIeal ffocUt? fr9v
Cm ro&cy:
Every Day
VOL. 1.
NO. 25.
The Chief Executive Calls Upon the
People of His State to Refute to
Purchase Books Not Carrying
the Union Label.
The following circular was recent-
ly Issued by Governor Charles N. Has-
kell of Oklahoma, to the working peo-
ple of that progressive state urging
upon them to Insist upon text-boks
bearing the label and to refuse to buy
any other kind:
"Executive Office.
"Staite of Oklahoma.
"C. N. Haskell, Governor.
"YOU WHO TOIL: It matters not
whether your labor be In the field, the
work shop, the mines, the railroad,
the store or any other walk in life,
you are interested in elevating the
standard of intelligence, the comfort
and enjoyment of the toiler's life.
You are interested in having the
world respect the toiling masses.
"Organization has been vastly ben-
ef'cial to all elements of the common
people. One of the problems of intel-
ligent labor is the union label on
printer's work. Oklahoma has under-
taken to have this label appear on its
(By H. W. Evans, Plainville.)
■The question was asked by the
commission to Inquire into the condi-
tion of the farmers in this country,
What was the one thing that would
benefit farmers more than other
things? And surely I answered a
postoffice bank of loan and deposnt,
where the government would loan
money out to all on good security at
three per cent., and receive the de-
posits of the people and pay them two
per cent, on their savings. This sure-
ly is the one thing needed, not only
to benefit farmers, but all other pro-
ducing workingmen. And this one
measure of reform should b definite
enough to please Brother T. T. O'Mal-
ley, and socialistic enough to please
every full-fledged socialist. But, as I
asked before what use asking for the
control of other things when we can
not control money for our own benefit.
We, you and me, reader, voted for
Taft. Why? Because there was no
hope for the Independent party and
the currency question is under consid-
ation by congress. Our own represen-
tatives—we, in our congressmen-
should be able to decide the great
question of mopey for our own inter-
Our present national banks have
reaped ten per cent, profit on an aver-
age for many years, while the rail-
roads, controlled by corporations, have
served the people for less than an
average of interest and profit than
six per cent, for any period of ten
years. I have concentrated my energy
to try to show you that our public
opinion is on the wrong side. We can
not step over from the road of our self-
interest—and I want to be rich—to the
broad road of Christianity, to sacri-
President Gompers Declares That It
is the Purpose of Those in Power
to Enslave the Wage Workers
of the Country.
to own themselves and their right to
! sa ywhen and for whom they will work
| now is the time to prepare. You must
formulate your plans, adopt your
weapons, and go forth determined to
"The union men of Great Britian
faced the same conditions there as we
are facing here. A« a result of that
issue they were forced to form a poli-
tical party of the trades unionists be-
cause they could not get the results
they sought from either of the lead-
ing parties in the country. As a r>
sult of the uprising of the workers
there and the election of nearly sixty
of their number to the parliament,
they have forced reform legislation
common school books and has made
excellent progress, notwithstanding fice self for the whole- I have tried to
the very few days it had to provide I show to the sociallsts that socialism
school books the first year; and after 's not a *"t better name on a peoples
this first delivery of books all subse-
quent deliveries must bear the union
label. We send you this circular, as
you will appreciate that sentiment
rules the world; therefore promote the
demand for union labor on common
school books in your own community.
Remember this: the publishers of
books make them to sell, and they
will comply with the people's de-
mand; remember again, that those
who toil are the same people who buy
more than four-fifths of all the com-
mon school books used in America.
Therefore, resolve next New Year's
day that thereafter you will not buy
a school book that does not bear the
union label. By spreading this de-
mand throughout the union, of which
your own community is a part, Okla-
homa will soon have plenty of com-
pany in this work.
"There are many talkers in the
United States, but talk finally ceases
to be a virtue—action is what you
"If you are in favor of a thing, stop
talking about it and do It.
Special to The Labor Unit.
Henry M. Walker, general organizer
of the American Federation of Labor
is in Guthrie stirring up the natives
and some of the "floaters" also. Since
his advent here he has stirred up con-
siderable interest among the unions al-
ready in existence, which are the
bricklayers, barbers, printers, book- a year.
government than republicanism, dem-
ocracy or populism . Why then try to
build a new party and spend another
thirty years in the work of organiza-
tion when a few months of enthusias-
tic work for this great reform would
compel our congress to give us govern-
ment postal banks of loan and de-
posit? Postal savings bank that will
take deposits at two per cent, is worse
than useless. They would be wolves
in lambs clothing. Two per cent, on
the miners' savings, but when a
young miner wants to borrow a thous-
and dollars to help finish a comforta-
ble home he will have to pay six per
cent, to the banks, or when half a
dozen miners co-operate principles
they have to borrow from national
banks at six!
This reminds me of asking for bread
and receiving a stone. We advocate
two per cent interest on savings for
the sake of having money at three per
cent, to stimulate productive industry
and keep workingmen at work. Al-
low me to repeat. Postal savings at
two per cent, without the loan depart,
ment at three is a humbug, and the
sooner we unite to cry it down the
better. Some editors are already
writing it up as a plan to stimulate
more economy and thrift among the
poor working people. What we need
is less interest to idle rich to squan-
der and more wages to working people
to enjoy the comforts of life. The
people have already enough to swamp
every bank in the country if they
would ask for their savings next week.
Don't be fooled to receive the stone.
We need—
More money at half the present rate
of Interest.
Less interest and better homes.
Less interest and safer mines.
Less interest and lower rents.
Less interest and higher wages.
Less interest and cheaper freight
Less interest and less families that
can live on eight hundred thousand
Last Monday afternoon the political
question had the stage at the A. F. of
L. convention.
President Gompers and half a score
of other influential men of the labor
movement declared that the time for
the men of labor to decide upon the
weapons to be used In the fight of
the future was now, not next year nor
two years nor four years hence.
President Gompers called attention
first to the position of the trades
unions of the country with reference
to their standing under the existing
laws, then to the need of legislation
to define their position, before he
launched into his declaration that now
was the time to plan action for the fu
ture. He said in part:
"The law of the land as it standi)
upon the statute books today and as'
it is interpreted by the courts is that
the trades unions are an illegal com-
bination in restraint of trade. This
is the language of the Sherman anti-
trust law. Under a strict interpreta-
tion of lit, honest business cannot be
conducted if the government sees fit
to institute proceedings in the courts,
much less trades unions. This inter-
pretation of the law has been made by
the present political administration at
Washington recently and from the vol-
ume of litigation that has developed
since it was announced there is small
room for doubt that the advantage that
accrues to the employer from the in-
terpretation will be pushed to the very
limit. It was the knowledge I had of
this condition that prompted me to say
in my report tha/t it would be well for
Conditions surrounding the walk-out
of the plumbers and gasfitters remain
unchanged, and while the boys are
most all employed In fair shops they
are still waging a quiet, systematic
fight against the master plumbers' as-
sociation. We received a communica-
and the repeal of the laws that made ion from one of the union gasfitters,
the Taff-Vail decision possible. The which briefly but plainly states a few
law that made the Taff-Vail decision ^ facts the public Bhould know:
possible is similar, In many respects, [ EDITOR LABOR UNIT
to the Sherman anti-trust law. | jjear sir:—The general public, as
"I care not what action you may de-1 a ru]ei are fa|r jn their judgment of
termlne upon. I am not a democrat. | unlon a,ralr8 after they have had tlme
I am not a republican; I am just a to investigate any trouble that comes
trades unionist. However, while dis-jUp betwen employees and employers,
cussing this subject, I want to say a j (j0 not think that It is generally
few words regarding the campaign, jinown that the present controversy
just closed, and my reason for sup- between the master plumbers anil
porting the democratic party. That
their employees is over a principle
party risked whatever chances for sue-1 lnvolv,,a rntht,r than the wage prop.
cess It might have had on other lines , oglUon lh(j pubUc knew that tlu,
by acceding to our demands. It made j
our contentions its contentions. It |
would have been rank ingratitude, aye,!
rank cowardice, for us to have turned
Master Plumber's Association was one
of their most tyrannical trusts in a
small way, that ever existed; an or-
ganization formed wholly for the pur-
pose of controlling the prices and dic-
tating who or «vho may not engage in
the plumbing business. The strong-
est point they have gained is where
they have affected a contract between
the power of money such an impetus thejp organlzntl(m am, the whnK.saU.
in Wichita, pulled off a few crooked
deals and got away with a considera-
ble amount of money. So the public
should know from what source this
so-called plumbing school will emi-
nate. Also that such characters as
McDonald are the ones that make it
possible for the Master Plumbers' As-
sociation to continue in business. How-
ever, the cause of unionism is grow-
ing steadily stronger and the time
Is not far away when the scab and
strikebreaker will have destroyed
themselves. Until then we must toler-
ate them and carry on our fight for
justice and right.
Yours truly,
our backs upon that party. If Mr
Bryan had been elected with the sup-
port of the hOBts of labor, it would
have given to the struggle of mankind
and womankind for emancipation from
as it has never received since the days
of the early sixties, when we fought
for the abolition of slavery.
"It would not have been because Mr. I
Bryan was the candidate, but because,
the hosts of workers and public sentl-l
ment had been aroused, and it would
reinstituted the policy of government
for the people, of the people and by the
people, and forever put an end to im-
perialism in this country.
"We must congratulate ourselves
that the contest was not barren of re-
sults, for the discussion of the ques-
tions has done more good than any-
thing else that has happened in the
history of the labor movement.
"Again I want to say to you that
now Is the time to make our fight for
the rights of the men who work or if
we go on without determining on some-
the trades unionists of the country to thing definite we soon will have no
give up attempting to defend them-! rights."
selves against such litigation, accept] when Gompers closed with his ap-
jail sentences or whatever the result | peal ithe convention burst into an up'
roar of applause that continued for
several minutes.
Be Fair in Your Dealings.
binders, pressmen and tailors. He has
organized a pretty good union of the
carpenters and also made application
for a charter for the painters and dec-
It is expected he will be here for a
week or ten days yet and will likely
organize a central body before he
leaves, while there is some talk of oth-
re crafts organizing. Certainly Guth-
rie is a field for such work that badly
needs looking after. Mr. Walker is a
strong advocate of central labor bodies
and state federations and It is quite
likely some of these unions will join
the State Federation of Labor of Okla-
Less interest and more families get-
ting one thousand a year.
Less interest and less families
squandering money in Europe.
Less interest and more families able
to educate their children at home.
Less interest and less social circles
above the producing classes.
Less interest and more social enjoy
men to workingmen.
Less interest and more income with-
out service.
Less interest and more equitable
pay for service rendered.
This is the essence of the kingdom
of God on earth, and the grand obj
of all labor unions. Why should not
the churches and labor unions unite
in the cry, Less interest and better
wages for service rendered?
might be and use the money of the
unions in a better purpose.
"For myself, I have fully determined
that if it comes to pass that I must
accept a term in jail or ask the Am-
erican Federation of Labor or any un-
ion or set of unions to pay a fine for
me I will go to jail. I see no dishonor The teaching of the trades unions
in serving a sentence for an alleged does in no manner change human na-
crime that I did not commit and am ture. The selfishness of man is domi
certain that the money of which the nant in all classes of people, and edu-
union treasury would be mulcted to cation simply has the tendency of
pay a fine may be put to better use. -checking its outward appearances. As
But this is foreign to the real meat of a ruie the most stubborn opponents of
the subject.
"You members of the trades unions
of the country are not in Washington
a great deal of the time, as I am, o<r
what the decision of the supreme court
you would more clearly understand
and its interpretation of the Shermas
law, coupled with the attitude of the
corporations' party leaders, really
•'For years there has been an objec-
tive point toward which the machinery
of the government wai working and
is working. That point is to tie the
men of labor to their work—through
the passage of laws or the interpreta-
tion of laws to take from the men of
labor the right to 6ay—we will work
or we will not work.
The objective point when reached
will see the men of labor of this coun-
try as thoroughly and completely en-
slaved and unfettered as were the most
concerns such as Crane •% Co., of this
city, to refuse to sell or in any way
encourage tho business of a firm not
a member of their association. Hav-
ing success iully accomplished this
point the next step was an effort to
destroy the organization of their em-
ployers, thereby trying to tie up both
ends of the deal. But they made a
mistake when they undertook to han-
dle the union plumbers and gasfitters.
The scheme was to formulate a set of
rules that no respictable man could
work under, and when the rules were
posted the union men walked out.
Then came the festive scab and strike
breaker, and today we have in Okla-
homa City a class of imported plumb-
Apropos of the acquirement of the
controlling interest in the Columbia
Bank and Trust Co, of this city by
Eastern capitalists, represented by F.
C. Davis, of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania,
it is pertinent to state something
about the new management and offi-
cers, and incidentally something about
the material facts of tho concern.
Changes in officers are briefly, that
C. K. Brooks retires from the head of
the organization, but remains a direc-
tor. W. A. Brooks is secretary and
treasurer, and \j. J. Pratt and D. H.
Phillips are directors; W. L. Norton
succeeds to the presidency. He Is
president of the National Bank of Bart-
lesville, with a capital stock of $100,-
000, and resources of $1,000,000. E.
10. Bliss, president of the Farmers' Na-
tional Bank of Tulsa, Is a member of
the new directory.
The Columbia Bank and Trust Co.,
is not the oldest, but one of the strong-
est financial institutions of the state.
It was organized by Judge C. R. Brooks
In 1905, with a capital stock of $200,
000. Judge Brooks and his associates
from the east have but strengthened
the labor union are those who at one
time were members of the union. They
were of the radical class who never
lost an opportunity of forcing the issue ™*er wh° P"^ ln hls money that
ers who, aside from being unreliable . what was already a strong institution,
workmen, are also a bunch of tramps j until now the Columbia Bank and
and bums. A few days ago one of
these scabe stole an Invalid's chair.
and for this crime he now languishes
in jail; and so it goes. The union men
of our city are home builders and
boosters of our city's welfare, and the
Master Plumbers' Association are re-
sponsible for the undesirable class
who came in to take the place of good
The union of plumbers and gasfit-
ters have only lost one member dur-
ing the present trouble—a fellow
whose reputation has been in the past
very bad to say the least. I refer to
B. E. McDonald, who Is conducting a
scab plumbing shop on North Broad-
way, and announces the intention of
starting a plumbing school—something
along the order of the disreputable
barber's colleges—promising the poor
upon the employer, be it just or un
he will be turned out a full fledged
just. With them it was a matter of plumber in a few weeks. Think of it;
power; as an employer it Is still the
Overestimated selfishness is the
mother of unjnst dealings regardless
of the class from which it emanates
I^abor has its overbearing members
just the same as the employers have,
but such men lind their powers wan
ing in the ranks of both. It Is the un
selfish, level-headed members In the j college plumbers at perhaps $150 or
ranks of both labor and capitol who j $2-00 per day they will no doubt take
are going to the front and who are advantage of the opportunity and you,
commanding the respect of the people | Mr. Customer, will pay your 90c an
The spirit of fair dealing and a get- j hour just the same, as If union plumb-
ting together on those questions in dis- j ers and gasfitters were employed. But
pute between the employer and his em who gets the worst end of the deal?
ployes is fast taking root with the fair- The general public—for inferior work
minded men ln bofh classes. The set done by inferior workmen is always an
do you suppose that if you wanted
doctor or a lawyer you would go to
some guy that held a certificate from
a school that gave him his diploma af
a month's study. Of course not.
Neither can a trade, such as the
plumbing or gasfitters be learned in
a few weeks. But if the Master
Plumbers' Association can get the
abject of chattel slaves for whom your ^ ^ aocpptp(, expensive proposition.
fathers fought and bled in the war of
"This is what we are coming to just
as surely as we breathe today. The
dominant party Is controlled body and
boots by the little coterie who want
to be classed as the new noblemen of
he western hemispher; in other words,
the money princes of the country
When, they beckon, their liegemen
untarily, is the best indication of prog- So. I wish to say that such deals
ress and industrial tranquillity. as Mr. McDonald proposes to inau
The education growing out of trades gnrate is only in keeping with such
unions and the organizations of em men of his character. A short time
ployers formed for the purpose of re back, before his record became known
sisting the labor unions are develop- Mr. McDonald was a member of the
ing a spirit of friendliness in each for local plumbers' union. During that
the other. Each is forced to study the time he became sick and through the
other as a means of defense. As they assistance of the union to the extent
become educated upon the methods of of $.10.00, and a loan by a brother mem-
jump at their command, and labor basjthelr opponent they can readily point ber, G. E. Sedgewick, of $10 he was
no more chance for its rights than. out to that opponent his shortcomings, able to get on his feet. After doing
would a lamb in a den of tigers. Aa the remedy is applied between so he failed to make good to his
"If we would prevent the success of i those two contesting forces they are friends, and at the first opportunity
this plan to enslave us and would pro-1 ffra(jua]]y drawn closer together.— becams a scab. It has lately become
tect the rights of the men who labor jjabor Review. known that this same McDonald, while
Trust Co.. Is one of the strongest fi-
nancial Institutions in the west, trans-
acting business approaching a half
million dollars, deposits considerably
over $600,000, with plenty of cash re-
serve, to do almost any reasonable
business with, backed by some of the
wealthiest men ln this country.
Special attention Is paid to the ac-
counts of the working class, to whom
every accommodation will be given,
consistent with safe and prudent bank-
The Columbia Bank and Trust Co.,
is the largest capitalized state bank
in Oklahoma, and its deposits of over
one-half million are guaramteed by the
bankers guarantee deposit fund of the
state of Oklahoma.
The officers and directors of thin
bank are among the liberal and pro-
gressive business men of the city, and
a deposit slip on this bank is as safe
as a government bond.
Four per cent interest is paid on
time deposits.
Since the new management deposits
have increased $240,000.00.
In short, the Columbia Bank and
Trust Co., of Oklahoma City Is a fi-
nancial institution of adamantine sol-
Idity. There is no banking house in
the state that excels its general re-
sponsibility, and few that are its equal
In mentioning new officers we should1
Include H. H. Smock, vice-president
and V. D. Houston, assistant treasurer.
It is a matter of congratulation to the
commercial element of Oklahoma City
and state that such a coalatlon of fi-
nancial strength exists as that included
in the Columbia Bank and Trust Com-
If you are out of employment,
desire to change your employment
or wish to better your condition
place an ad in our "Free Employ-
ment Column." It will cost you
nothing whether you are a member
of a union or not. Have you an-
swers addressed in our care.

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Egbert, R. Oklahoma Labor Unit (Oklahoma City, Okla.), Vol. 1, No. 25, Ed. 1 Saturday, December 5, 1908, newspaper, December 5, 1908; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. (https://gateway.okhistory.org/ark:/67531/metadc106680/m1/1/ocr/: accessed September 28, 2021), The Gateway to Oklahoma History, https://gateway.okhistory.org; crediting Oklahoma Historical Society.

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