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Bill Haywood

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Title: Bill Haywood  
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Subject: Socialist Party of America, Labor federation competition in the United States, George Pettibone, Anna LoPizzo, 1912 Lawrence textile strike
Collection: 1869 Births, 1928 Deaths, American Anti–world War I Activists, American Communists, American Defectors to the Soviet Union, American Labor Leaders, American Marxists, American Miners, American People of Afrikaner Descent, American People of South African Descent, American Revolutionaries, American Socialists, Burials at Forest Home Cemetery, Chicago, Burials at the Kremlin Wall Necropolis, Deaths from Stroke, History of the United States (1865–1918), Industrial Workers of the World Leaders, Industrial Workers of the World Members, Members of the Socialist Party of America, People Acquitted of Murder, People Associated with the Dil Pickle Club, People from Salt Lake City, Utah, Persons Charged Under the Espionage Act of 1917, Persons Convicted Under the Espionage Act of 1917, Progressive Era in the United States, Syndicalists
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Bill Haywood

"Big Bill" Haywood
Haywood from Emma Langdon's The Cripple Creek Strike
Born (1869-02-04)February 4, 1869
Salt Lake City, Utah Territory
Died May 18, 1928(1928-05-18) (aged 59)
Moscow, Russian SFSR, USSR
Occupation Labor leader
Children William Haywood
Wm. D Haywood

William Dudley Haywood (February 4, 1869 – May 18, 1928), better known as "Big Bill" Haywood, was a founding member and leader of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) and a member of the executive committee of the Socialist Party of America. During the first two decades of the 20th century, he was involved in several important labor battles, including the Colorado Labor Wars, the Lawrence Textile Strike, and other textile strikes in Massachusetts and New Jersey.

Haywood was an advocate of craft unions that were prevalent at the time, such as the AFL.[2] His belief that workers of all ethnicities should be united also clashed with many unions.[3] His strong preference for direct action over political tactics alienated him from the Socialist Party and contributed to his dismissal in 1912.[4]

Never one to shy from violent conflicts,[4] Haywood was frequently the target of prosecutors. His trial for the murder of Frank Steunenberg in 1907 (of which he was acquitted) drew national attention; in 1918, he was one of 101 IWW members convicted of violating the Espionage Act of 1917 during the First Red Scare. While out of prison during an appeal of his conviction, Haywood fled to Russia, where he spent the remaining years of his life.[5]


  • Biography 1
    • Early life 1.1
    • Western Federation of Miners involvement 1.2
    • Foundation of the Industrial Workers of the World 1.3
    • Murder trial 1.4
    • Lawrence Textile Strike 1.5
    • Socialist Party of America involvement 1.6
    • Other labor involvement 1.7
    • Espionage trial 1.8
    • Life In Soviet Russia 1.9
    • Death 1.10
  • Haywood's labor philosophy 2
    • Industrial unionism 2.1
    • Haywood's revolutionary imperative 2.2
    • Racial unity in the labor movement 2.3
  • Works 3
  • See also 4
  • Footnotes 5
  • Further reading 6
  • External links 7


Early life

William D. Haywood was born in 1869 in Salt Lake City, Utah Territory. His father, a Pony Express rider, died of pneumonia when Haywood was three years old.[6] At age nine, he injured his right eye while whittling a slingshot with a knife, permanently blinding his right eye. Haywood never had his damaged eye replaced with a glass eye; when photographed, he would turn his head to show his left profile. That same year, he began working in the mines, never having received much formal education. After brief stints as a cowboy and a homesteader, he returned to mining in 1896.[1] High-profile events such as the gradual demise of the Molly Maguires,[7] the Haymarket Massacre in 1886 and the Pullman Strike in 1894 fostered Haywood's interest in the labor movement.[6]

Western Federation of Miners involvement

In 1896, Ed Boyce, president of the Western Federation of Miners, spoke at the Idaho silver mine where Haywood was working.[6] Inspired by his speech, Haywood signed up as a WFM member, thus formally beginning his involvement in America's labor movement.

Haywood immediately became active in the WFM, and by 1900 he had become a member of the national union's General Executive Board. In 1902, he became secretary-treasurer of the WFM, the number two position after President industrial lines to bring broader working class support for labour struggles.[1]

Foundation of the Industrial Workers of the World

Late in 1904, several prominent labor radicals met in Chicago, Illinois to lay down plans for a new revolutionary union.[8] A manifesto was written and sent around the country. Unionists who agreed with the manifesto were invited to attend a convention to found the new union which was to become the Industrial Workers of the World.

At 10 a.m. on June 27, 1905, Haywood addressed the crowd assembled at Brand's Hall in Chicago.[9] In the audience were two hundred delegates from organizations all over the country representing socialists, anarchists, miners, industrial unionists and rebel workers. Haywood opened the First Convention of the Industrial Workers of the World with the following speech:[9]

Fellow Workers, this is the Continental Congress of the working-class. We are here to confederate the workers of this country into a working-class movement that shall have for its purpose the emancipation of the working-class from the slave bondage of capitalism. The aims and objects of this organization shall be to put the working-class in possession of the economic power, the means of life, in control of the machinery of production and distribution, without regard to capitalist masters.

Other speakers at the convention included United Mine Workers of America.[9] After its foundation, the IWW would become aggressively involved in the labor movement.

Murder trial

1907 photo of defendants George Pettibone

On December 30, 1905, Frank Steunenberg was killed by an explosion in front of his Caldwell, Idaho home. A former governor of Idaho, Steunenberg had clashed with the WFM in previous strikes. Harry Orchard, a former WFM member who had once acted as WFM President Charles Moyer's bodyguard[10] was arrested for the crime, and evidence was found in his hotel room.[11] Famed Pinkerton detective James McParland, who had infiltrated and helped to destroy the Molly Maguires, was placed in charge of the investigation.[12]

Before any trial had occurred, McParland ordered that Orchard be placed on death row in the Boise penitentiary, with restricted food rations and under constant surveillance. After McParland had prepared his investigation, he met with Orchard over a "sumptuous lunch" followed by cigars.[13] The Pinkerton detective told Orchard that he could escape immediate hanging only if he implicated the leaders of the WFM.[14] In addition to using the threat of hanging, McParland promised food, cigars, better treatment, possible freedom, and even a possible financial reward if Orchard cooperated.[15] The detective obtained a 64-page confession from Orchard in which the suspect took responsibility for a string of crimes and at least seventeen murders.[16]

McParland then used perjured extradition papers, which falsely stated that WFM leaders had been at the scene of the Steunenberg murder,[17] to cross the state line into Joseph McKenna dissenting.[20]

Haywood's trial began on May 9, 1907, with famed Chicago defense attorney Judge Hilton of Denver in charge of the defense.[24] After a second jury acquitted Pettibone, the charges against Moyer were dropped.

Despite his radical views, Haywood emerged from the trial with a national reputation. Eugene Debs called him "the Lincoln of Labor."[25] Along with his colorful background and appearance, he was known for his blunt statements about capitalism. "The capitalist has no heart," he often said, "but harpoon him in the pocketbook and you will draw blood."[26] Another time, he began a speech by noting, "Tonight I am going to speak on the class struggle and I am going to make it so plain that even a lawyer can understand it."[27] Yet Haywood also had a flair for dangerous hyperbole that, when quoted in newspapers, was used to justify wholesale arrests of IWW strikers. "Confiscate! That's good!" he often said. "I like that word. It suggests stripping the capitalist, taking something away from him. But there has got to be a good deal of force to this thing of taking."[28]

Lawrence Textile Strike

Haywood was the co-author of a popular exposition of the principles of industrial unionism published by Charles H. Kerr & Co. in 1911.

Bill Haywood had left the WFM and was organizing for the IWW by the time the Lawrence Textile Strike in Lawrence, Massachusetts garnered national attention. On January 11, 1912, textile mill workers in Lawrence left their jobs in protest of lowered wages. Within a week, twenty thousand workers were on strike. The IWW already had a presence in Lawrence and assumed leadership of the strike.

Authorities responded by calling out police, and the strike quickly escalated into violence. Local IWW leaders [32] Though also denounced in the press, the children's exodus gained widespread publicity and made the city of Lawrence look bad. While police and the mayor allowed smaller contingents of children to leave on two more occasions, plans were made to crack down.

On February 24, when strikers attempted to send still more children away, police were ready. During a melee, women and children were forcibly separated, police lashed out with clubs, and dozens of strikers and their offspring were jailed. A national outrage resulted. The New York World wrote, "The Lawrence authorities must be blind and the mill owners mad."[33] The New York Tribune called the police response "as chuckle-headed an exhibition of incompetence to deal with a strike situation as it is possible to recall."[33] The incident led to a congressional hearing and the attention of President William Howard Taft. Nationwide publicity pressured the mill owners into cooperating with the strikers; on March 12, the owners agreed to all the demands of the strikers, officially ending the strike.

However, Haywood and the IWW were not yet finished in Lawrence; despite the end of the strike, Ettor and Giovannitti remained in prison. Haywood threatened the authorities with another strike, saying "Open the jail gates or we will close the mill gates." Legal efforts and a one-day strike on September 30 did not prompt the authorities to drop the charges. Haywood was indicted in Lawrence for misuse of strike funds, a move that kept him from returning to the city and eventually led to his arrest on the Boston Common. However, on November 26, Ettor and Giovannitti were acquitted, and upon their release were treated to a massive demonstration of public support.[34]

Socialist Party of America involvement

For many years, Haywood was an active member of the

  • Bill Haywood entry at the Anarchy Archives
  • Max Eastman "Bill Haywood, Communist"
  • David Karsner "William D. Haywood, Communist Ambassador to Russia"
  • Lewis Gannett "Bill Haywood in Moscow"

External links

  • Peter Carlson, Roughneck: The Life and Times of Big Bill Haywood. New York: W.W. Norton, 1983.
  • Joseph R. Conlin, Big Bill Haywood and the Radical Union Movement. Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University Press, 1969.
  • Sam Dolgoff, "Revolutionary Tendencies in American Labor – Part 2," The American Labor Movement: A New Beginning. Resurgence.
  • Beverly Gage, The Day Wall Street Exploded: The Story of America in its First Age of Terror. New York: Oxford University Press, 2009.
  • Elizabeth Jameson, All That Glitters: Class, Conflict, and Community in Cripple Creek. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1998.
  • J. Anthony Lukas, Big Trouble: A Murder in a Small Western Town Sets Off a Struggle for the Soul of America. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1997.
  • Harry Siitonen, "The IWW: Its First 100 Years," Industrial Workers of the World, March 2005.
  • Vincent St. John, The IWW: its History, Structure and Methods. Chicago: IWW Publishing Bureau, 1917.
  • Fred W. Thompson, The IWW: Its First Seventy Years 1905–1975. Industrial Workers of the World, 1976.
  • Bruce Watson, Bread and Roses: Mills, Migrants, and The Struggle for the American Dream. New York: Viking-Penguin, 2005.
  • Howard Zinn, A People's History of the United States. Revised and Updated. New York: HarperCollins, 2009.

Further reading

  1. ^ a b c "New Perspectives on the West – William "Big Bill" Haywood," PBS Interactive, 2001. Retrieved March 20, 2006.
  2. ^ a b William Cahn, A Pictorial History of American Labor. New York: Crown Publishers, 1972; pp. 137, 169.
  3. ^ a b c d Howard Zinn, A People's History of the United States. Revised and Updated. New York: HarperCollins, 2009; pp. 337–339.
  4. ^ a b c d Sam Dolgoff, "Revolutionary Tendencies in American Labor – Part 2," The American Labor Movement: A New Beginning. Resurgence.
  5. ^ a b "Big Bill Haywood Weds. Can't Speak Russian and Russian Wife Can't Speak English," New York Times, January 14, 1927 .
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i Douglas Linder, "The Trial of Bill Haywood," Famous Trials, 1998.
  7. ^ Willam D. Haywood, The Autobiography of Big Bill Haywood. New York: International Publishers, 1966; pg. 59.
  8. ^ For an official account, see: Vincent St. John, The IWW: its History, Structure and Methods. Chicago: IWW Publishing Bureau, 1917.
  9. ^ a b c Zinn, A People's History of the United States, pp. 329–330.
  10. ^ a b Haywood, The Autobiography of Big Bill Haywood, pg. 158.
  11. ^ Peter Carlson, Roughneck: The Life and Times of Big Bill Haywood. New York: W.W. Norton, 1983; pg. 87.
  12. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 88.
  13. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 89.
  14. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 90.
  15. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pp. 89–91.
  16. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 91.
  17. ^ a b Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 93.
  18. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pp. 93–94.
  19. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 97.
  20. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 101.
  21. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 107.
  22. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 119.
  23. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 138.
  24. ^ Clarence Darrow: Attorney for the Damned, p. 188, at Google Books
  25. ^ Bruce Watson, Bread and Roses: Mills, Migrants, and The Struggle for the American Dream. New York: Viking-Penguin, 2005; pg. 92.
  26. ^ Watson, Bread and Roses, pg. 93.
  27. ^ Watson, Bread and Roses, pg. 95.
  28. ^ Watson, Bread and Roses, pg. 96.
  29. ^ Fred W. Thompson, The IWW: Its First Seventy Years 1905–1975. Industrial Workers of the World, 1976; pg. 56.
  30. ^ Haywood, The Autobiography of Big Bill Haywood, pg. 249.
  31. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 166.
  32. ^ Watson, Bread and Roses, pp. 145–146.
  33. ^ a b Watson, Bread and Roses, pg. 175.
  34. ^ "'"10,000 Hail Ettor and Comrades Free; Enthusiastically Pledge Fealty to 'One Religion, Working Class Solidarity. (PDF). New York Times. 27 November 1912. p. 1. Retrieved 2010-11-11. 
  35. ^ a b c Harry Siitonen, "The IWW: Its First 100 Years," Industrial Workers of the World, March 2005.
  36. ^ a b "Result of Referendum D, 1912: Vote Closed February 26 [1913]," Cleveland Socialist, vol. 2, whole no. 73 (March 15, 1913), pg. 4.
  37. ^ a b c Zinn, A People's History of the United States, pp. 372–373.
  38. ^ a b c "Haywood in Russia as Sentence Begins," New York Times, April 22, 1921, pg. 14.
  39. ^ """The Autonomous Industrial Colony "Kuzbass. Retrieved 2013-06-04. 
  40. ^ Dreiser, Theodore, Dreiser Looks At Russia, Horace Liveright (1928)
  41. ^ Thomas Stressguth, Legendary Labor Leaders. Oliver Press, 1998; pg. 61.
  42. ^ Kevin J. Christiano, "Religion and Radical Labor Unionism: American States in 1920s," Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, vol. 27, no. 3 (1988), pp. 378–388.
  43. ^ 'Soviet State Funeral Is Likely for IWW Leader, Who Was Fugitive From Here. Nihilist to Some, Martyr to Others, He Knew Many Jails From Steunenberg Trial Onward," New York Times, May 19, 1928 .
  44. ^ Eric Foner and J. Garraty, The Reader's Companion to American History. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Books, 1991; pg. 496.
  45. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 36
  46. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pp. 50–52.
  47. ^ Haywood, The Autobiography of Big Bill Haywood, pg. 73.
  48. ^ a b Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 80.
  49. ^ Cahn, A Pictorial History of American Labor, pg. 204.
  50. ^ a b Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 44.
  51. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 45.
  52. ^ Cahn, A Pictorial History of American Labor, 174.
  53. ^ A History of American Labor, Joseph G. Rayback, 1966, pages 202–203.
  54. ^ a b The Autobiography of Big Bill Haywood, 1929, pp. 77–78.
  55. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 81.
  56. ^ A Pictorial History of American Labor, pg. 201.
  57. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pp. 26–30.
  58. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 49.
  59. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 60.
  60. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 58.
  61. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 59.
  62. ^ a b c d Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 65.
  63. ^ a b Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 54.
  64. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 55.
  65. ^ Elizabeth Jameson, All That Glitters: Class, Conflict, and Community in Cripple Creek. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1998; pg. 179.
  66. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 62.
  67. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 63.
  68. ^ Jameson, All That Glitters, pg. 140.
  69. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg.
  70. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pp. 64–65.
  71. ^ Haywood, The Autobiography of Big Bill Haywood, pg. 174.
  72. ^ Haywood, The Autobiography of Big Bill Haywood, pg. 181.
  73. ^ Haywood, The Autobiography of Big Bill Haywood, pg. 222.
  74. ^ Helen Marot, American Labor Unions: By a Member. New York: Henry Holt and Company, 1914; Chapter 4.
  75. ^ Carlson, Roughneck, pg. 146.
  76. ^ J. Anthony Lukas, Big Trouble: A Murder in a Small Western Town Sets Off a Struggle for the Soul of America. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1997; pg. 233.
  77. ^ Haywood, The Autobiography of Big Bill Haywood, pg. 286.
  78. ^ Haywood, The Autobiography of Big Bill Haywood, pg. 287.
  79. ^ William J. Gaboury. "From Statehouse to Bull Pen: Idaho Populism and the Coeur d'Alene Troubles of 1890s." Pacific Northwest Quarterly. January 1967, p. 1422.
  80. ^ Quoted in Samuel Orth, The Armies of Labor: A Chronicle of the Organized Wage-Earners. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1919.


See also

  • Industrial Socialism With Frank Bohn. Chicago: Charles H. Kerr & Co., 1911.
  • "The General Strike. Chicago: Charles H. Kerr & Co., n.d. [1911]. Speech of March 16, 1911.
  • Bill Haywood's Book: The Autobiography of Big Bill Haywood. New York: International Publishers, 1929. Reissued as The Autobiography of Big Bill Haywood.


Ignoring the law against interracial meetings, the convention invited the African American workers. The convention would eventually vote to affiliate with the IWW.[3]

You work in the same mills together. Sometimes a black man and a white man chop down the same tree together. You are meeting in a convention now to discuss the conditions under which you labor. Why not be sensible about this and call the Negroes into the Convention? If it is against the law, this is one time when the law should be broken.[3]

In 1912, Haywood spoke at a convention for The Brotherhood of Timber Workers in Louisiana; at the time, interracial meetings in the state were illegal.[3] Haywood insisted that the white workers invite the African American workers to their convention, declaring:

Much of Haywood's philosophy relating to socialism, to the idea that [80]

Racial unity in the labor movement

Haywood demonstrated his Marxist roots when, confronted by the Commission on Industrial Relations with an argument about the sanctity of private property, he responded that a capitalist's property merely represented "unpaid labor, surplus value."[77] But the forum also gave Haywood an opportunity to compare the philosophy of the IWW with that of Marx and the socialist parties. Reminded by the Commission that socialists advocated ownership of the industries by the state, Haywood remembered in his autobiography that he had drawn a clear distinction. All of industry should be owned "by the workers," he observed.[78]

Haywood seemed most comfortable with a philosophy arrived at through the hard-scrabble experiences of the workers. He had the ability to translate complex economic theories into simple ideas that resonated with working people. He distilled the voluminous work of Karl Marx into a simple observation, "If one man has a dollar he didn't work for, some other man worked for a dollar he didn't get."[75] While Haywood respected the work of Marx, he referred to it with irreverent humor. Acknowledging his scars from dangerous mining work, and from numerous fistfights with police and militia, he liked to say, "I've never read Marx's Capital, but I have the marks of capital all over me."[76]

The "industrial ballot" referred to the direct action methods (strikes, slowdowns, etc.) of the IWW.

I advocate the industrial ballot alone when I address the workers in the textile industries of the East where a great majority are foreigners without political representation. But when I speak to American workingmen in the West I advocate both the industrial and the political ballot.[74]

While Haywood continued to champion direct action, he advocated the political action favored by the socialists as just one more mechanism for change, and only when it seemed relevant. At an October 1913 meeting of the Socialist Party, Haywood stated:

It is to the ignominy of the Socialist Party and the Socialist Labor Party that they have so seldom joined forces with the I.W.W. in these desperate political struggles.[73]

Haywood favored direct action. The socialist philosophy — which WFM supporter the Rev. Fr. Thomas J. Hagerty called "slowcialism" — did not seem hard-nosed enough for Haywood's labor instincts. After the Boise murder trial, he had come to believe,

Haywood complained that John D. Rockefeller was "wielding more power with his golf sticks than could the people of Colorado with their ballots."[71] It appeared to Haywood that the deck was stacked, and no enduring gains could be won for the workers short of changing the rules of the game. Increasingly, his industrial unionism took on a revolutionary flavor.[72] In 1905 Haywood joined the more left-leaning socialists, labor anarchists in the Haymarket tradition, and other militant unionists to formulate the concept of revolutionary industrial unionism that animated the Industrial Workers of the World. Haywood called this philosophy "socialism with its working clothes on."[10]

To members of the WFM, it became clear that government favored the companies, and only direct action by organized workers could secure the eight-hour day for themselves. When miners in Idaho Springs and Telluride decided to strike for the eight-hour day, they were rounded up at gunpoint by vigilante groups and expelled from their communities. Warrants were issued for the arrest of the law-breaking vigilantes, but they were not acted upon.[70]

General Bell had been the manager of one of the coal mines in Cripple Creek where the strike was taking place.[68] It wasn't any surprise to Haywood that soldiers seemed to be working in the interests of the employers; he had seen that situation before.[62] But when the Colorado legislature acknowledged the complaints of organized labor and passed an eight hour law, the Colorado supreme court declared it unconstitutional.[69] So the WFM took the issue to the voters, and 72 percent of the state's voters approved the referendum.[62] But the Colorado government ignored the results of the referendum.[62]

Haywood at a convention in Chicago (1917)

In the WFM's 1903–04 struggle in Colorado, with martial law once again in force, two declarations uttered by the National Guard and recorded for posterity further clarified the relationship of the mine operator's enforcement army — provided courtesy of the Colorado governor — to the workers. When union attorneys asked the courts to free illegally imprisoned strikers, Adjutant General Sherman Bell declared, "Habeas corpus be damned, we'll give 'em post mortems."[66] Reminded of the Constitution, one of Bell's junior officers declared coolly, "To hell with the Constitution. We're not going by the Constitution."[67]

Haywood considered the brutal conditions in Coeur d'Alene a manifestation of class warfare. In 1901 the miners agreed at the WFM convention that a "complete revolution of social and economic conditions" was "the only salvation of the working classes."[65]

[63] One local union leader was imprisoned for 17 years.[64] As they had done in a strike in Coeur d'Alene seven years earlier, soldiers acted as strike breakers. They rounded up hundreds of union members without formal charges and put them in a filthy, vermin-infested warehouse without sanitation services for a year. They were so crowded that the soldiers locked the overflow of prisoners in boxcars.[63] During an [62] Haywood observed how the government frequently took the side of business to defeat the tactics and the aspirations of the miners.

Labor produces all wealth; all wealth belongs to the producer thereof.[61]

Having met Debs during his WFM days, Haywood had also become interested in the former railway leader's new passion, socialism.[60] Haywood subscribed to the belief, and with Boyce, formulated as a new motto for the WFM, that:

Haywood's industrial unionism was much broader than formulating a more effective method of conducting strikes. Haywood grew up a part of the working class,[57] and his respect for working people was genuine.[58] He was quickly angered by the arrogance of employers "who had never ... spoken to a workingman except to give orders."[59]

"[The mine owners] did not find the gold, they did not mine the gold, they did not mill the gold, but by some weird alchemy all the gold belonged to them!"

--Haywood, William D. The Autobiography of Big Bill Haywood. New York: International Publishers, 1929, p. 171

Haywood's revolutionary imperative

For Haywood, industrial union principles were later confirmed by the defeat of the [48] The obvious solution, it seemed to Haywood, was for all of the workers to join the same union, and to take collective action in concert against the employers. The militants of the WFM referred to the AFL as the "American Separation of Labor,"[55] a criticism that was later echoed by the Industrial Workers of the World.[56]

Observing that the ARU was defenseless, AFL officials viewed the plight of the rival organization as an opportunity to bolster the railway brotherhoods, which the AFL was courting, and [50]

...that the strikers return to work at once as a body, upon the condition that they be restored to their former positions, or, in the event of failure, to call a general strike.[54]

Debs attempted to seek help from the American Federation of Labor. He asked that AFL railroad brotherhood affiliates present the following proposition to the Railway Managers' Association: [53] The strike was eventually crushed by massive government intervention that included 2600 Deputy U.S. Marshals, and 14,000 state and federal troops in Chicago alone.[52]. Railroad traffic throughout the nation was "largely paralyzed. The effectiveness of the industrial form of unionism was evident from the start."Pullman strike In June 1894, the ARU voted to join in solidarity with the ongoing [51]

Bill Haywood, unknown date

[50] Gompers was an advocate of

I have differed all my life with the principles and methods of the condemned.[47]

Haywood also shared Boyce's skepticism of the role played by the American Federation of Labor (AFL). Haywood criticized labor officials who were, in his view, insufficiently supportive of Labor militants. For example, he recalled with disdain the opening remarks of Samuel Gompers when the AFL leader appeared before Illinois Governor Richard Oglesby on behalf of the Haymarket prisoners:

Even before Haywood first became an official with the Western Federation of Miners, he was convinced that the system under which working people toiled was unjust. He described the execution of the Knights of Labor.[45] Haywood had watched men die in unsafe mine tunnels, and had marched with Kelly's Army. He had suffered a serious hand injury in the mines, and found that his only support came from other miners. When Haywood listened to Ed Boyce of the WFM addressing a group of miners in 1896, he discovered radical unionism and welcomed it.[46]

Industrial unionism

Haywood's labor philosophy

On May 18, 1928, Haywood died in a Moscow hospital from a stroke brought on by alcoholism and diabetes.[43][44] Half of his ashes were buried in the Kremlin wall; an urn containing the other half of his ashes was sent to Chicago and buried near the Haymarket Martyrs' Monument.[6]


In Soviet Russia, Haywood became a labor advisor to Lenin's Bolshevik government,[6] and served in that position until 1923. Haywood also participated in the founding of the Kuzbass Autonomous Industrial Colony.[39] Various visitors to Haywood's small Moscow apartment in later years recalled that he felt lonely and depressed, and expressed a desire to return to the United States.[40][41][42] In 1926 he took a Russian wife, though the two had to communicate in sign language, as neither spoke the other's language.[5]

Life In Soviet Russia

Despite the efforts of his supporters, Haywood was unable to overturn the conviction. In 1921, Haywood skipped bail while out on appeal and fled to Russia.[38] IWW officials were taken by surprise that Haywood had jumped bail, with his own attorney declaring that "Haywood has committed hari-kiri so far as the labor movement is concerned if he has really run away. He will be disowned by the IWW and all sympathizers."[38] A bond in the amount of $15,000 posted by millionaire supporter William Bross Lloyd was forfeited as a result of Haywood's flight.[38]

In April 1918, Haywood and 100 of the arrested IWW members began their trial, presided over by Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis. The trial lasted five months, the longest criminal trial up to that time; Haywood himself testified for three days.[37] All 101 defendants were found guilty, and Haywood (along with fourteen others) was sentenced to twenty years in prison.

Haywood and the IWW frequently clashed with the government during their labor actions. The onset of World War I gave the federal government the opportunity to take action against Haywood and the IWW.[37] Using the newly passed Espionage Act of 1917 as justification, the Department of Justice raided forty-eight IWW meeting halls on September 5, 1917.[35] The Department of Justice, with the approval of President Woodrow Wilson, then proceeded to arrest 165 IWW members for "conspiring to hinder the draft, encourage desertion, and intimidate others in connection with labor disputes."[37]

Espionage trial

In 1913, Haywood was involved in the Paterson silk strike. Haywood and approximately 1,850 strikers were arrested during the course of the strike. Despite the long holdout and fundraising efforts, the strike ended in failure on July 28, 1913. Haywood again made headlines, however, when the IWW staged the Paterson Strike Pageant at Madison Square Garden, in which actual strikers appeared onstage as themselves re-enacting the strike even as it was going on in Paterson. Haywood became a celebrity in progressive circles and began frequenting the intellectual salon of Mabel Dodge Luhan where, while often wearing his Stetson hat, he hobnobbed with writers and artists of the avant-garde.

Other labor involvement

However, the aggressive tactics of Haywood and the IWW, along with their call for abolition of the wage system and the overthrow of capitalism created tension with moderate electorally-oriented members of the Socialist Party. Haywood and the IWW focused on direct action and strikes, which often led to violence, and were less concerned with political tactics.[35] When Haywood was quoted speaking at public meetings in New York City to the effect that he had never advocated the use of the ballot by the workers but had instead favored the tactics of direct action, an initiative recalling Haywood from the NEC was launched by the State Executive Committee of the Socialist Party of New York.[36] In February 1913 the recall of Haywood was approved by a margin of more than 2-to-1.[36] Following his defeat, Haywood left the ranks of the Socialist Party, joined by thousands of other IWW members and their sympathizers.[35]

In 1912, he was elected to the Socialist Party National Executive Committee. [4]

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