A Project by
the Museology Class
East Side Industry
East Side Introduction
 East Side Industry Introduction
 Republic / LTV Steel
 Memorial Day Massacre
 
 
 
Memorial Day Massacre

         The Memorial Day Massacre of 1937 took the lives of 10 steel workers and injured 105.  The Steel Workers Organizing Committee (SWOC)  organized a peaceful protest that was to take place on Memorial Day in 1937.  The SWOC was attempting to organize the steel workers into an industrial union.   When the company refused to recognize the union the workers went out on strike.  The workers were striking against Republic Steel, part of the group of steel companies known as "Little Steel", who did not want to grant them union recognition.  The workers met at sam's Club on 112th and Green Bay Avenue and decided to picket in front of the Republic steel main gate. When the group arrived at 116th Street, a line of police officers, about 300 ft. wide, met them.  The workers tried to talk to the police about letting them picket in front of the main gate.  What happened next is unknown, but the police opened fire on the crowd.  Gas bombs and shots were fired at the crowd.  As the police move forward at the crowd, they began to club and beat them to the ground.  They then started to arrest peopleand throw them into patrol wagons.  Some were seriouly wounded.  When the day ended, 4 people were killed, 6 would later die in the hospital, and 30 suffered gunshot wounds.

Strikers and Police Meet
The Massacre Begins

Reasonable Force??
The Aftermath

Scenes from the Memorial Day Massacre, 1937

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Chicago's East Side Community.


 
 
Chicago
Teachers' Center
National Endowment for the Humanities
Northeastern 
Illinois University