Tuesday, January 27, 2009

History Lessons

If you've never been turned onto This Week in History, you might want to check it out. I learn plenty. For example, this week I learned that on this day in 1847:

"Several hundred citizens of Marshall, Michigan, helped former slaves escape to Canada rather than be returned to their 'owner' by bounty hunters. Adam Crosswhite and his family, escaped Kentucky slaves, were tracked to the abolitionist town of Marshall by Francis Troutman and others. Both black and white residents detained the bounty hunters and threatened them with tar and feathers. While Troutman was being charged with assault and fined $100, the Crosswhites fled to Canada. Back in Kentucky, the slaveowner stirred up intense excitement about 'abolitionist mobs' in Michigan."

I also learned that on this day in 1969:

"In Detroit, African-American auto workers, known as the Eldon Avenue Axle Plant Revolutionary Union Movement, led a wildcat strike against racist practices and poor working conditions at the Chrysler plant.

"Since the 1967 Detroit riots, black workers had organized groups in several Detroit auto plants critical of both the auto companies and the United Auto Workers union leadership. These groups combined Black-Power nationalism and workplace militancy, and temporarily shut down more than a dozen inner-city plants. The most well-known of these groups was the Dodge Revolutionary Union Movement, or DRUM. They criticized both the seniority system and grievance procedures as racist. Veterans of this movement went on to lead many of the same local unions."

See what I mean?

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

it's almost a blessing that these symbols of American hegemony, gluttony and racism are in their final throes.

Changeseeker said...

Almost, Anonymous? I'd like to believe "American hegemony, gluttony and racism are in their final throes," but I suspect that there are some rough times ahead before we hear the death rattle.

Anonymous said...

I was speaking specifically about "the big 3," not American hegemony, gluttony and racism themselves... which I realize are no where near gone. I say *almost* a blessing because of all the jobs that potentially will be lost. And I also fear the union movement in the US will go down with the big 3 as well. So, yes, almost a blessing, but not quite. :^(