Talk:Knights of Labor

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Racism[edit]

Eh? "Black workers were welcomed after 1883" and "associated with the KKK and strongly racist views"? These don't seem consistent with one another.

Need to mention that the KoL was racist against East Asians.

I agree. The statement that the KoL "The Knights of Labor had a reputation for being all-inclusive" and the later admission that "The Knights strongly supported the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 and the Contract Labor Law of 1885, as did many other labor groups." Perhaps what is meant is that 'they prided themselves on being all inclusive (a little hypocritically)' or that 'they were very inclusive for their times'. Starseeker shkm (talk) 14:21, 6 October 2008 (UTC)

my understanding is that the knights of labor became the AFL not that they were replaced by it, also it did not begin as a "fraternal organisation", but as a secret society of garment workers which became stronger as a result of the mass railroad strikes. ALSO membership reached its highest in 1886 with 750,000. 69.86.191.40 02:34, 25 February 2007 (UTC)agatha cole, agatha@oiww.org


The KofL was a very large, national organization, so any such sweeping statements are innaccurate. The article needs to be expanded and the chronology filled in. As an organization supported the Chinese Exclusion Act. There should be quotes from Powderly in his memoir which would substantiate that. However, I am unaware that the KofL consorte with or associated with the KKK. The assertion seems chronologically improbable since the original KKK was disbanded around 1869. The second Klan was organized after 1914, when the KofL was a largely African-American social organization. At its height, the KofL was not complicit in Jim Crow. It organized many African-American assemblies, and held an integrated convention in Richmond in 1886 (check the date). This was all part an parcel of its ideological goal of uniting all producers in a single organization. Structurally and politcally, the KofL was completely incompatable with the craft-based divisions of the AFL. There was no integration of the two labor federations (although individual members of the KofL would join the AFL). The (indirect) successor of the KofL is the IWW. This is not a direct continuation, since the KofL was producerist in orientation, and the IWW is an industrial union. I've long wanted to expand this article, maybe one day I will get around to it. DJ Silverfish 18:04, 25 February 2007 (UTC)

comments for this version 18:32, 23 Nov 2004[edit]

  • General copyedit - found many cut and pastes from other sources
  • fixed some wiki links
  • factual error:

Terence Powderly became the leader in 1879, secrecy was lifted in 1881

  • removed:

number of people in founding group - sources cite a group of nine tailors, five, six,...

  • Added:

However, the Knights strongly supported the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 and the Contract Labor Law of 1885, as did many other labor groups. The Knights also made little headway toward organizing Irish-Americans due to the secretive Freemason-like beginnings of the organization.

  • Added:

Labor Day reference

Do all the years need to be wikified?

Clubmarx 18:34, 23 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Thanks for the clean-up! In my opinion, no, the years don't have to be wikified. But it's not hurting anything one way or the other, as I see it. Quadell (talk) (help)[[]] 19:06, Nov 23, 2004 (UTC)

Repeated vandalism[edit]

This page for some reason seems to have become a target for various people to insert gibberish in various sections. not sure what should be done outside of continuing to revert their edits (this isn't the result of an edit war so not sure how useful locking the page would be - it's not a situation that will be resolved per se...). --Black Butterfly 12:40, 10 January 2007 (UTC)

Uriah H.? or S.? Stephens[edit]

I think it's Uriah Smith Stephens 75.44.29.211 17:10, 7 April 2007 (UTC)

The S intitial is used in the list of leaders while the H intial is used in the introductory sentence.192.88.165.35 14:52, 9 April 2007 (UTC)

Doctors admitted to the Knights of Labor, or not?[edit]

The article states:

Bankers, doctors, lawyers, gamblers, stockholders, and liquor manufacturers were excluded because they were considered unproductive members of society.

However, A Pictorial History of American Labor, William Cahn, 1972, page 137, states that:

the Knights of Labor was loosely organized (admitting even physicians and employers)

I realize that the organization was large and exhibited numerous tendencies. But these two statements appear to be mutually exclusive. Richard Myers 04:29, 20 April 2007 (UTC)

Self-management or co-determination?[edit]

I'm confused about the meaning of a phrase in the top paragraph, which says the Knight believed in "cooperative employer-employee ownership of mines and factories", a phrase that links to the article on worker cooperatives. But a worker coop is self-managed by the workers - there is no separate employer. If this phrase is supposed to indicate joint ownership and management by employers and employees, I would change the link to something like co-determination, not to worker coop, and rephrase of "joint ownership and management of mines and factories by employers and employees". And if it's supposed to indicate worker cooperative enterprise only, I would change it to something like "cooperative ownership of mines and factories by the workers". -Father Inire 00:24, 27 October 2007 (UTC)

Canada[edit]

Someone with more knowledge about the subject should discuss the Knights of Labour in Canada where they played an influential role in the early labour movement. - Wyldkat November 16, 2007

Vandalism[edit]

In the Resources section, vulgar additions are evident. Please revert to old version or whatever. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 69.81.21.179 (talk) 23:01, 7 February 2012 (UTC)