each party receiving the benefit of the information and experience of the other, with a consequently enhanced efficiency of administration of the two funds.

At its first session the Joint Relief Committee appointed a sub-committee on relief, empowered to meet between sessions of the joint committee. The actions of this subcommittee were in turn submitted to the joint committee for its approval or otherwise. Sometimes the joint committee itself heard the reports and acted directly upon the cases, according to the convenience of the members. The joint committee, however, had final jurisdiction in all cases.

The system of inquiry and investigation was necessarily a thorough one. While the committee, as much as possible, avoided any tendency at "red tape" and other methods that might prove embarrassing or annoying to those most affected, yet a certain amount of precaution had to be taken, so that the money appropriated in each case should be placed in the most responsible and deserving hands. The one thought always kept uppermost, however, was relief, and that as prompt and complete as circumstances would admit.

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In the work of investigation, not less than two or three visits in each case were made. The greatest difficulty was in finding the nearest relatives of the victims, and when found to discover which were the most responsible. A number of the dead girls left not a single relative in this country, their families usually being in Russia or Italy. As many of the families could speak but little English, the relief workers (those who investigated details after the first general reports were made) found it useful to have a smattering of either Italian or Jewish or both.

A card system was used for recording the reports of these visitors. For each case a separate card was made out in the name of the killed or injured person; it covered principally the following details: name; address; family, if any, with name, age, occupation, wages, birthplace, length of residence in the city and country of each member; injury sustained; loss due to the fire (value of clothing lost, etc.); resources (insurance, fraternal societies, etc.); church connections, if any (this in order to provide for proper funeral or religious services); whether member of any union; nearest

relatives; family's estimate of needs; visitor's recommendations, and, finally, action. taken by the committee.

First, temporary relief, as before stated, was given. This took the form either of cash in amounts varying from $5 upward or payment of funeral expenses, or both. The cash payments were extended weekly when deemed necessary, pending action for permanent relief. Besides paying expenses of several funerals contracted for privately, the Joint Relief Committee buried directly 21 victims, 14 of these being Jews and 7 Italians. By special arrangement with the Workmen's Circle (Arbeiter Ring), the Jewish working class sick and death benefit society, the Jewish burials were made in the Mount Zion Cemetery in the society's plot.

What might also be called temporary relief were the sums given to the families that desired to observe the Easter or Passover religious holidays. In nearly all cases, both in the Jewish and Italian families, there was membership in the orthodox Hebrew and Catholic churches, and the coming of Easter and Passover meant in each case an increased expense in the household so that the season could be properly observed with due regard to orthodox requirements.

Cases for permanent reliet finally resolved themselves into four distinct classes: First, where families were deprived of all support; second, where dependent relatives were left in Europe; third, where partial support had been lost; fourth, where people injured had to be helped until well.


The amount given in each case varied according to the circumstances, i. e., number, age, capacity and general living conditions of the family, amount of wages lost, financial condition of victim at time of the disaster, etc. An attempt was made to maintain at least the previous standard of living, however poor it may have been.

It is not my purpose to give here in detail the particulars of the cases, even though space permitted. This is intended to be a recital of methods merely. Suffice it to say at this time that the circumstances in almost every case coming before the committee were nothing short of a revelation to us, accustomed though we were to workingclass conditions. Not one of the committee but acknowledged surprise at the poverty, deprivation and struggles which were

so vividly disclosed to us. And along with this were revealed records of devotion, selfdenial and fortitude on the part of working girls which we felt certain were only an intimation of the nobility of soul and integrity of character that had inspired their lives.

The one startling fact of all was the large number of girls who had been the main, and ofttimes the sole, support of families in Russia or Italy. These girls had come to this country, either alone or to relatives (though in most instances they had lived alone or shared a room with a girl shopmate of the same race), for the purpose of working to send back money to their fathers and mothers and younger sisters and brothers in their native land. And this money, when it was not used to relieve immediate necessities there, was stored up until enough was saved to bring over the whole family, or at least some other member able to work and send still more money back, until eventually the entire family should emigrate to the United States. Only in cases where extreme old age or physical disability would prevent entrance here under the immigration laws did the parents remain behind.

But in no case were these allowed to suffer if the girls could help it. And these girls assumed this responsibility uncomplainingly and even joyfully, not as a task or burden, but as a labor of love freely and gladly undertaken. How some of them sent the amounts they did and maintained themselves was a problem which only they and the thousands of other girls who are now doing likewise could solve.

The amounts sent home varied, but were not less than $5 monthly. This in roubles means much more in Russia than here. The chief problem confronting the relief committee lay in providing for these dependent families abroad. In each case a lump sum was allotted sufficient to equal the amount usually sent each month to cover a certain period of years, according to knowledge of the family circumstances. Arrangements for remitting these appropriations every month were made through different mediums. Wherever practicable, Wherever practicable, families were assisted, in whole or in part, to immigrate here, when assurance was had they would be cared for and there would be no violation of the immigration laws.

A number of young girls left without homes or responsible relatives were placed in the Clara de Hirsch Home for Girls, an excellent trade school, where they will remain until they have learned English and are deemed capable to make their own living. In other cases, girls who suffered injuries or shock were sent to the country through the Solomon Loeb Convalescent Home, to stay there until well, and on their return to receive a weekly stipend through the union office until they should obtain

Although the Joint Relief Committee, at the time its report of all receipts and expenditures is made, will have practically completed its work, yet the actual operations of the fund will extend over a number of years. These operations-the remittance of moneys abroad, the distribution of weekly pensions, the supervision and care of the girls and children placed in institutions of various kinds, the securing of work and proper living arrangements for others when recuperated from their injuries, and the care of numerous other details-will be conducted through an Executive Committee of three members, consisting of Elizabeth Dutcher, of the Women's Trade Union League, Abe Baroff, General Organizer of the union local, and Morris Hillquit, acting as trustees of the funds remaining in the hands of the Joint Relief Committee. The Women's Trade Union League will be the centre of operations, and that the work will be done efficiently and thoroughly there is no question.

The total amount to be administered by the Joint Relief Committee, it was estimated, would reach between $16,000 and $20,000 (contributions continued to come in after the funds were declared closed); and as most of the work done was voluntary and only moderate salaries were paid when necessary, the total expense of administration will be a comparatively small amount (under $200). It was believed that with the aid of the Red Cross Emergency Fund, which was available where it was thought cases could not be adequately covered, the provision made in the various cases for relief would be sufficient to enable the afflicted ones to tide over, to some extent at least, the critical and unforeseen situation which had been so cruelly thrust upon them.

The People's Rule Essential to Liberty.


[State Senator LEE C. GATES, reported in the California Outlook, May 13, 1911.]

For thirty-two years we have had the recall in the Constitution of the State of California. Did you know that? For thirty-two years we have had the recall in the Constitution: not in the hands of the people, it is true, but in the hands of the Legislature.

Section 10, Article VI, of the Constitution reads: "Justices of the Supreme Court and of the District Courts of Appeal and Judges of the Superior Courts may be removed by concurrent resolution of both houses of the Legislature adopted by a twothirds vote of each house."

What is that? What is that but the recall? Judges may be removed by a two-thirds vote of the Legislature, expressed in a concurrent resolution, and that, too, without their being permitted to do more than appear and make explanation of the charges that are made against them. No trial necessary. That isn't an impeachment. It isn't a forum on that question. The Legislature of the State of California, at its recent session, could have called any member of the Supreme Court before it at that session; could have called all of the members of the Supreme Court before it at that session and could have removed all of them by a twothirds vote if it had seen fit to do so. The recall has been in the Constitution ever since it was written.

The recall has been there for thirty years and more, and to be exercised by whom? By the agents of the people? Well, not exactly. It was written there because the "interests" in this State wanted to control the Judges of the courts, and knowing that they could control the Legislature, put the power there where they could exercise it whenever a Judge didn't do their bidding. Whenever a Judge would stand out against those interests and they desired his recall, it was within the power of the Southern Pacific, up to the convening of the last Legislature, to have invoked the recall and removed any Judge that refused to do the bidding of that great corporation.

The recall is in our State Constitution. It is in the constitutions and the laws of at least twenty-six other States of the Union. I investigated that far. There may be more, because in my investigations I didn't take the time to make the investigation complete. But I found it in twenty-six other States, and that, too, from the very time that those States were organized. In some States the Governor may remove a Judge; after making charges and presenting the same to the Legislature, the Governor him

self may remove. But in nearly all the States the power rested in the Legislature.

IS OUR LAW THE PEOPLE'S LAW? [WILLIAM MARION REEDY, in St. Louis Mirror.] When Judges can set aside the laws made by the people, when they can insert qualifying clauses where such clauses were not placed by the people through their representatives, when they can rewrite the law in negation of popular will, when they can override Congress, there is no believer in democratic government who can deny that the courts legislate and thus violate the Constitution they interpret. In so far as the Standard Oil decision does legislate what the Congress did not intend to legislate with regard to trusts, the opinion is one of the strongest arguments yet put forward for the recall of the judiciary. No court can set aside a law of Parliament. English law is the law of the English people and they obey it. We are a lawless people for the reason mostly that the law is not what the people but what the Judges make it, and those Judges are generally selected from quarters not sympathetic to social progress which must strive ever against ultra-legalism.


Again is the recall, applicable to the judiciary, urged in a Governor's message; this time by Chase S. Osborn, of Michigan. Governor Osborn vetoed a bill repealing the existing law that Judges of the Supreme Court should reside at the State capital. In his message returning the bill without his approval to the Legislature, he says: "This bill bas been lobbied for actively by members of the Supreme Court actuated by selfish purposes. While this may be their privilege, it indicates the finite character of our courts, and proves to my mind that any recall law that might be enacted should apply to the judiciary with equal force as to other officers of goveri ment."-La Follette's.

The suit brought against the A. F. of L. and the Buck's Stove and Range Company by C. W. Post for the sum of $750,000 damages under the Sherman Anti-Trust Law, has been dismissed by Judge Dyer, of the Federal Circuit Court of the Eastern Division of Missouri. And thus Post will have to resort to his old method of getting fools enough to eat his postum to recoup his failure to mulct labor to the tune of $750,000 and to pay Collier's $50,000 for libel.


Trade Unionism in England.

mouthpiece of the men that drove him eventually from this country to Queensland. Eight years of hard work out there preceded his entry to the State Legislature. Eventually he entered the famous Dawson ministry as Minister of Railways. His career from pit boy to Premier is a splendid testimony to his own personality and the vitality of the labor movement in Australia.

[Exclusive correspondence of AMERICAN FEDERATIONIST.] LONDON, May 30, 1911. HE resistless development of the trade union movement, not only in the United Kingdom but in the whole of the British empire, is one of the conspicuous features of contemporary history. Not only do the unions increase in numerical and financial strength, with a movement toward amalgamation and federation, and with success again and again to a most pronounced extent in dispute and negotiation; they are achieving recognition in unexpected and surprising quarters. The invitation extended by King George V. to the trade unions of this country to be represented at his Coronation in the persons of two representative trade union leaders is the latest step in this direction. Conservative reactionaries, anti-unionists and "free-labor" fakirs stand aghast. There is nothing condescending in the invitation and nothing sycophantic in its prompt acceptance. Two respected and typical trade union leaders in the country have been chosen to represent labor at the Coronation. They are W. Mullen, J. P., of the Lancashire Textile Workers, Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee of the Trades Union Congress, and W. J. Davis, J. P., of Birmingham, Secretary of the National Society of Brass Workers, the oldest member of the Parliamentary Committee. Neither of these gentlemen is a Labor member of Parliament.

Labor will be further represented on June 22 in the persons of the Labor Premier of the Australian Commonwealth, Fisher, and the Labor Premier of New South Wales, McGowan. These two men, who have attended along with the other colonial Premiers, have behind them long and honorable records of work at their trade and effort in their unions. McGowan was born on the passage out from England to Australia when his father, an English bridge builder, emigrated from Liverpool. The future Premier went to work at the age of 15 and at 19 became a boilermaker in Sydney, New South Wales. He was still a workman when he was elected to the New South Wales Parliament in 1891, since when his progress has been steady to his present prominent official position. To show that despite his attention to the labor movement his hand has not lost his workman-like cunning an amusing incident has occurred during his London visit. Passing along Kingsway, one of London's newest main central thoroughfares, which has been driven through a network of old crooked streets, he found riveters at work on a new steel construction building. He entered into conversation with the men, got on first-class terms with them, and finally took a hand at the riveting for a short while in a way that won the admiration of one workman for another.

Premier Fisher was born near Kilmarnock, in Scotland, in 1862, and got there the scanty education that a poor but independent farmer could give his son in the local parish school. Early in life Fisher worked in the mines of Ayrshire, where at the same time Keir Hardie as a young miner was employed. Fisher, like Hardie, rapidly took active part in the organization of Ayrshire miners, and it was a strike in 1884 at which Fisher was the

Various British trade unions continue to present reports upon which they can well be congratulated. The Amalgamated Society of Toolmakers, taking all the year 1910, announces a substantial increase in membership from 3,851 to 4,553, the union's income being increased at the same time to $62,500, almost $10,000 on the twelve months. Ten years ago the union had a membership of 1,851 only, and an income of just over $20,000. During 1911 the membership has gone on increasing until now it well exceeds 5,000 The reserve fund at the end of April stood at $110,000 against $78,000 in the corresponding month of last year.

The Associated Iron Moulders of Scotland declare trade to be fairly good and the current membership at only 42 short of 8,000, income continuing to be well in excess of expenditure. The reserve funds are up to almost $140,000. Prosperous conditions are reported by the Steam Engine Makers' Society and clear vacancy books are the general rule throughout the branches. This union caters for fitters and erectors, turners, patternmakers, wheelwrights, smiths and sea-going engineers.

The United Patternmakers' Association gives the most favorable account of itself that it has been able to do for the last five years. The general state of trade is reported to be good, the best district being the Clyde and the worst the North Sea


Less than three per hundred of the members are out of work, and the quarterly income exceeds $31,000 against a total expenditure of just over $24,000.

The United Society of Boilermakers and Iron and Steel Ship Builders, which had to face the terrible lockout of last autumn, still reports an unemployed membership of 5,453, which is a decrease of about 300 on the last membership figures. Expenses are being gradually reduced, the total outgo for April this year, for example, being $28,000 as against $35,000 for March. The total membership of the union is now 51,856, and the quarter's income shows a balance of $44,000 over expenditure.

The building trade unions all tell a satisfactory story. In other branches of industry good trade and effective organization appear to make themselves well felt.

An attempt on the part of the Northeastern Railway Company to force its policemen to give up their union membership was met with so strong a stand from the other members of the railway unions that the companies have solved the difficulty by finding the union policemen work in other grades without reduction of pay or privileges, of course allowing them at the same time to retain their union cards.



In this department is presented a comprehensive review of industrial conditions throughout the country. This includes:

A statement by American Federation of Labor general and local organizers of labor conditions in their vicinity.

Increases in wages, reduction of hours, or improved conditions gained without strikes.

Work done for union labels.

Unions organized during the last month.

City ordinances or state laws passed favorable to labor.

Strikes or lockouts; causes, results.

A report of this sort is rather a formidable task when it is remembered that nearly 1,000 of the organizers are volunteers, doing the organizing work and writing their reports after the day's toil is finished in factory, mill, or mine.

The matter herewith presented is valuable to all who take an intelligent interest in the industrial development of the country. It is accurate, varied, and comprehensive. The information comes from those familiar with the conditions of which they write.

These organizers are themselves wage-workers. They participate in the struggles of the people for better conditions, help to win the victories, aid in securing legislation-in short, do the thousand and one things that go to round out the practical labor movement.

Through an exchange of views in this department the wage-workers in various sections of the country and the manifold branches of trade are kept in close touch with each other.

Taken in connection with the reports from secretaries of international unions, this department gives a luminous vision of industrial advancement throughout the country.

CORRECTION: The report appearing in the June issue of the AMERICAN FEDERATIONIST, under the name of Organizer R. Ē. White, of Childress, Texas, should have been credited to Organizer C. F. Barnes, of Corsicana, Texas.


Brick, Tile, and Terra Cotta Workers. Wm. Van Bodegraven.-Our members in Chicago asked for increased wages and were instead offered a wage reduction by the employers, which resulted in a strike May first. About 150 of our men are locked out in Thurber, Tex.


G. J. Vitzhum.-We expect to reorganize some of our locals and the outlook is good for success. No strikes or troubles to report.

Cement Workers.

Henry J. Ullner.-We have organized new unions in Fresno, Cal.; Champaign, Ill.; Victoria, B. C.; La Crosse, Wis.; Auburn, N. Y., and Vallejo, Cal. Owing to false reports to the effect that there is need of both skilled and unskilled labor in California, especially in San Francisco, the Building Trades and Labor Council are notifying workers to stay away at the present time. Many men are unemployed and walking the streets, and many jobs in operation have signs "No help wanted." Our local union in Los Angeles reports splendid increase in membership and they have placed two business agents in the field. In Springfield, Ill.,

a lockout is in progress, but the men feel confident of winning their demands for increased wages.

Lathers (Wood, Wire, and Metal).

Ralph V. Brandt.-Our trade in fair shape. New locals have been formed in Modesto and Richmond, Cal., and in Medford, Ore. We spent $800 in expenditure for death benefits recently.

Steel Plate Transferrers.

D. H. Sherman.-State of employment good in our line. There is some improvement in wages since last report.

Stove Mounters.

J. H. Kaefer.-Shorter hours and higher wages have been secured in several places. We are making special efforts to organize the unorganized workers in our trade and trying to secure the ninehour day where the ten hours yet prevail. We have two strikes pending. Demands are for increased wages.


E. J. Brais. Since last report we have had strikes in St. Louis, San Francisco, Wheeling and Sioux Falls, for union shop and wage scale. Two

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