Over a hundred attendees were at the Pacific Northwest Labor History Association’s 50th Anniversary celebration in 2018 on April 6 – 8, 2018 at the Hilton Seattle Airport & Conference Center in SeaTac, WA.
Highlights included a myriad of workshops and keynote speeches by Nikkita Oliver, Bill Fletcher, Jr., and Kent Wong.
The PNLHA brings a history of struggle for labor and human rights to the forefront of our consciousness. Over fifty years, we have explored regional, national, and international issues, and used music, drama, and re-enactments, talks and papers to highlight labor history. In this era of disaster capitalism, we especially need to remember what working people and unions have done to make the world a better place. All photographs by Garet Munger. See more of this event and Garet’s other photos at https://pipilio.smugmug.com/PNHLA-2018/
The Hilton has offered to lower the guest room rates from $149 + taxes to $113 + taxes. Take advantage of this new lower rate for the Labor History Conference before March 16th. If you have already booked your room your rate will be decreased to $113 + taxes.
You are invited to the Pacific Northwest Labor History Association’s Annual Conference and 50th Anniversary celebration! Our conference will be April 6 – 8, 2018 at the Hilton Seattle Airport & Conference Center in SeaTac, WA.
Registration includes a Friday night social and movie co-sponsored with the United Association of Labor Educators (UALE). This year’s conference promises to be one of our best. We have two dynamic keynote speakers in Bill Fletcher Jr. and Kent Wong. Saturday evening we have our Annual Awards Banquet where we honor our own who are making labor history today. The featured speaker will be Nikkita Oliver, organizer, educator, teaching-artist, social justice activist.
We have sixteen excellent workshops as well as three movies: we are collaborating with UALE in premiering the new film 9to5/925 Legacy which looks at the 40 year history of the National Association of Working Women and its sister union, SEIU 925 based in Seattle; Witness to Revolution on the 1919 Seattle General Strike; and the just-released Verona which explores the events surrounding the Everett Massacre.
The PNLHA brings a history of struggle for labor and human rights to the forefront of our consciousness. For fifty years, we have explored regional, national, and international issues, and used music, drama and re-enactments, talks and papers to highlight labor history. In this era of disaster capitalism, we especially need to remember what working people and unions have done, and need to do, to make the world a better place.
Hilton Seattle Airport & Conference Center
17620 International Blvd.
Seattle, WA 98188
Room Rate: $113 + taxes before March 16
Reservation Link: https://aws.passkey.com/go/PNLHA2018
27920 – 68th Ave. E
Graham, WA 98338
Phone: Tom Lux, 206-551-1371
PNLHA Labor History Conference is part of WSLC MayWorks 2018
Registration fees include all workshops and plenaries. They do not include accommodations, meals or transportation. Conference attendees are expected to pay registration fees. Some Youth Scholarships may be available.
“Honoring Our Past, Creating Our Future”
You are invited to the Pacific Northwest Labor History Association’s 50th Anniversary celebration in 2018! Our annual conference will be April 6 – 8, 2018 at the Hilton Seattle Airport & Conference Center in SeaTac, WA. Our program includes a Friday night social, Saturday keynote speakers, workshops and a lunch. Saturday evening we have our Annual Awards banquet where we honor our own who are making labor history today.
The PNLHA brings a history of struggle for labor and human rights to the forefront of our consciousness. Over fifty years, we have explored regional, national, and international issues, and used music, drama, and re-enactments, talks and papers to highlight labor history. In this era of disaster capitalism, we especially need to remember what working people and unions have done to make the world a better place.
This coming year we will focus on our annual conference and planning for the centennials of the 1919 Seattle General Strike and the Centralia Massacre.
We are asking for your financial support to continue PNLHA’s goal of preserving the history and heritage of workers in the Pacific Northwest. We hope your organization will contribute by purchasing an acknowledgement in our PNLHA 50th Anniversary Commemorative Booklet.
There are several ways to make a contribution:
1) Mail a check to
ATTN: 2018 PNLHA Conference Sponsorship
27920 – 68th Ave. E., Graham, WA 98338.
2) Send payment via PayPal to email@example.com with your desired sponsorship amount from options above.
In “Add a Note” option, note that this is 2018 Conference Sponsorship/Donation
3) Donate via this online form
If you would like one of our 2018 PNLHA Conference Planning Committee members to address your organization please contact Tom Lux at (206) 551-1371 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
This submission to PNLHA was suggested by Dr. Mark Gregory
Honorary Post-Doctoral Research Associate
School of Humanities and Social Inquiry
University of Wollongong Australia
Sydney Morning Herald, 23 December, 1861 p. 3.
JOHN BROWN OF HARPER’S FERRY.-The following is from the New York Independent, August 29 :—
Who would have dreamed, a year and a half since, that a thousand men in the streets of New York would be heard singing reverently and enthusiastically in praise of John Brown ! Such a scene was witnessed on Saturday evening last. One of the new regiments from Massachusetts, on its way though this city to the seat of war, sang—
John Brown’s body lies a-mouldering in the grave,
John Brown’s body lies a-mouldering in the grave,
John Brown’s body lies a-mouldering In the grave,
His soul’s marching on !
Glory Hallelujah ! Glory Hallelujah ! Glory Hallelujah !
The stanzas which follow are in the same wild strain—
He’s gone to be a soldier in the army of the Lord, &c,
His soul’s marching on !
John Brown’s knapsack is strapped upon his back, &c,
His soul’s marching on !
His pet lambs will meet him on the way, &c.
They go marching on !
Seldom, if ever, has New York witnessed such a sight or heard such strains. No military hero of the present war has been thus honoured. No statesman has thus loosed the tongues of a thousand men to chant his patriotism. Little did Captain Brown think of the national struggles that were to follow his eventful death. But his calmness and firmness gave evidence of his faith that the cause of freedom demanded the sacrifice of his life, and he nobly died. It was a notable fact that while the regiment united as with one voice singing this song, thousands of private citizens, young and old, on the sidewalks and in crowded doorways and windows, joined in the chorus. The music was in itself impressive, and many an eye was wet with tears. Few who witnessed the triumphal tread of that noble band, arrayed for the war for freedom, will ever forget the thrilling tones of that song.
In March of 2017, PNLHA, the Washington State Labor Council, the Labor Education and Research Center, and the Labor Archives of Washington made a series of joint educational presentations at Seattle’s 5th Avenue Theater for musical “The Pajama Game” exploring the legacy and promise of the labor movement in Washington through a tour of the past and present roles unions play in vastly improving the lives of working people, their families, and their communities. The presentations highlighted what unions have done and continue to do to resist oppression and amplify the voices of working people, tying them into the universal themes in the Pajama Game and current fights for social, racial and economic justice in our region.
See the slideshow from the heavily-attended sessions here!
The Labor Archives of Washington, University of Washington Libraries Special Collections, is pleased to announce the first episode of our new segment on the news magazine show UW360. The multi-episode segment will highlight the Labor Archives’ collections, researchers, and community supporters, will air on KOMO TV on Sunday, October 2 at 5:30 PM and stream on various media platforms including YouTube, Roku and Amazon Fire TV, thereafter. The rest of the episodes of the series are in production and will air over the next year.
Here’s the direct link to the Labor Archives segment: http://uwtv.org/series/uw360/watch/kfs6VK-HpS4/
Here’s the link to the entire episode:
The second episode of the Labor Archives of Washington’s monthly labor history segment on the radio show “We Do the Work” (KSVR 91.7 FM, Mount Vernon) aired on January 5, 2016 on KSVR. Soon, it will become a part of KSVR’s streaming audio archives. http://www.ksvr.org/archives_wtdw.html (This post will be updated when the stream is added to the online archive)
The episode covered the 1981 murder of Filipino American cannery worker union leaders Silme Domingo and Gene Viernes, who were assassinated in Seattle’s Pioneer Square in their union hall, and the collections in the Labor Archives relating to that history.
The new feature is called “Learn Yourself,” and it will cover a particular labor history topic and introduce new users to resources for further reading and research, including the Labor Archives of Washington’s collections.
The first episode, about the Everett Massacre of 1916 and the Industrial Workers of the World in the Pacific Northwest, is available for streaming now.
“We Do the Work” host Michael Dumovich and producer/organizer Janet McKinney invited Casey to record the regular feature after his first appearance on their show in July. The show is broadcast from Mount Vernon, Washington and is being broadcast by other public radio affiliates nationwide. It is also available via Public Radio Exchange (PRX): an online marketplace for distribution, review, and licensing of public radio programming.
We Do The Work radio airs:
2015 PNLHA Conference Wrap-Up by Tom Lux
Many of our members attended a very successful PNLHA conference May 1 – 3 in SeaTac, WA. If you were able to attend the conference this year I hope it met your expectations. If you were unable to attend I know Oregon is starting to plan for another successful conference for this time next year. Stay tuned for that and go to our website often to check for any updates.
We received several evaluation forms and the respondents rated the conference evenly between 4 and 5 (5 being the highest rating possible). The most interesting presentations were listed as Bill Fletcher (by far) and the Domingo/Viernes Cannery Workers film shown Sunday morning. There was also interest in the IWW Project, Al Bradbury, the Friday night social, as well as the banquet/send off for Ross, Remembering Salt, Love & Solidarity video, Seattle Labor Chorus, etc.
Annual General Membership Meeting
Our Annual General Membership meeting was held after the conference on Sunday, May 3rd with 51 members in attendance. In the two contested races Tom Lux from Lake Forest Park, WA was elected President to take over for Ross Rieder who retired, and Brenda Doolittle from Graham, WA was elected US Treasurer. All other positions were uncontested and all results will be posted on the PNLHA web site.
There were several proposed by-law changes, all of which passed with some minor changes. The by-laws and the meeting minutes are going through our review/edit process now and will be posted on our web site once they are approved.
As I campaigned for PNLHA President, I said one of our goals should be to grow our membership. We are all organizers. I suggest we all carry a few membership application forms and whenever we talk to anyone interested in labor history, hand them a form and a pen. I think we need to make a very concerted effort to recruit in communities of color. PNLHA should reflect all worker history and we should all be at the table.
We need to find ways to become more visible in the community, schools, and union halls. Your ideas and commitment to expand our programs are welcomed.
If we want to continue the labor history calendar as an outreach and education tool, and I think we should, we will need a smooth transition from Ross doing all the work to how we want to do it in the future. There are a few ways we can do this, whether we pay someone to produce and distribute it or we divide the work among a few people, etc. Again, your ideas on transition are welcome.
2015 PNLHA Annual Conference Report Back from Oregon–Labor’s Music Filled the Halls by Ron Verzuh
Musical events at the conference were numerous and varied, starting the first night with a moving rendition of The Ballad of Harry Bridges by his granddaughter, Marie Shell. Angelica Guillén followed with some stirring antiracist poetry. A local high school brass band rounded off the evening with several jazz tunes. On Day 2, Labor Notes editor Al Bradbury led us in song to begin her talk on youth and unions.
Rika Ruebsaat and Jon Bartlett, Canadian music historians who’ve attended many PNLHA events, sang several Joe Hill songs as part of the conference’s recognition of the 100th anniversary of the Wobbly songster’s death by Utah firing squad. On the final day, Seattle’s Labor Chorus sent us home with some rousing anthems from several labor troubadours, including a sing-a-long of The Internationale.
You can now view the conference video playlist on YouTube (See the descriptions of the content below)