strike, creamette company, john vachon, September 1939, LOC

Labor strife and the making of Minneapolis

Published September 2, 2014 by Kirsten Delegard

This week we’ll feature images of Minneapolis workers, in honor of Labor Day. The 1934 Truckers’ Strike is the the most famous labor conflict in the history of Minneapolis and is now credited with making the city a union town. This strike did break the control of the repressive Citizens’ Alliance. But this one conflict did not make the city into a union stronghold. This epic clash ushered in a period of labor unrest and for the rest of the decade, workers struggled for collective bargaining and higher wages in workplaces all over the city. This image from the Library of Congress shows a woman picketing the Creamette Company–known for making macaroni part of an American diet–in September 1939. Photographer John Vachon captured the scene.