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General Strike

General Strike

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Published by Christopher Lentil
Born in Salt Lake City, Bill Haywood (1869-1928) went to work in the mines at the age of nine. He joined the Western Federation of Miners in 1896 and was active as an executive board member and as secretary-treasurer of that organization until 1907. One of the founders and the best known of the I.W.W. leaders, he became its secretary-treasurer for 1916-18. In September 1917 he was arrested and convicted under the Federal Espionage Act. In 1920, while out of Leavenworth Penitentiary on bail, he fled to the Soviet Union where, for a time, he was a leader of the American Kuzbas Colony in Siberia. He died in Moscow in 1928 after writing his memoirs, which he titled Against the Current. They were published as Bill Haywood's Book by International Publishers (New York, 1929).

Haywood wrote several pamphlets and numerous articles. He was one of the I.W.W.'s most famous lecturers. In World of Labour (London, 1913), G. D. H. Cole said: "Haywood could make himself understood by a crowd that did not know a word he said, merely by waving his arms and shouting." On Haywood's death, an obituary in The Nation (May 30, 1928) called him "as American as Bret Harte or Mark Twain."

Haywood's pamphlet The General Strike (Chicago, n.d.), published by the I.W.W., was a summary of a speech he gave in New York City on March 16, 1911.
Born in Salt Lake City, Bill Haywood (1869-1928) went to work in the mines at the age of nine. He joined the Western Federation of Miners in 1896 and was active as an executive board member and as secretary-treasurer of that organization until 1907. One of the founders and the best known of the I.W.W. leaders, he became its secretary-treasurer for 1916-18. In September 1917 he was arrested and convicted under the Federal Espionage Act. In 1920, while out of Leavenworth Penitentiary on bail, he fled to the Soviet Union where, for a time, he was a leader of the American Kuzbas Colony in Siberia. He died in Moscow in 1928 after writing his memoirs, which he titled Against the Current. They were published as Bill Haywood's Book by International Publishers (New York, 1929).

Haywood wrote several pamphlets and numerous articles. He was one of the I.W.W.'s most famous lecturers. In World of Labour (London, 1913), G. D. H. Cole said: "Haywood could make himself understood by a crowd that did not know a word he said, merely by waving his arms and shouting." On Haywood's death, an obituary in The Nation (May 30, 1928) called him "as American as Bret Harte or Mark Twain."

Haywood's pamphlet The General Strike (Chicago, n.d.), published by the I.W.W., was a summary of a speech he gave in New York City on March 16, 1911.

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Published by: Christopher Lentil on Nov 30, 2009
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03/19/2014

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General Strike
 A Speech by William “Big Bill” Haywood
 
Preamble to the IWW Constitution
 The working class and the employing class have nothing in common. There can be no peace so long as hunger and want are ound among millions o the working people and the ew! who make up the employing class! have all the good things o lie. Between these two classes a struggle must go on until the workers o the world organi"e as a class! take possession o the means o production! abolish the wage system! and live in harmony with the #arth.  We ind that the centering o the management o industries into ewer and ewer hands makes the trade unions unable to cope with the ever growing power o the employing class. The trade unions oster a state o aairs which allows one set o workers to be pitted against another set o workers in the same industry! thereby helping deeat one another in wage wars. $oreover! the trade unions aid the employing class to mislead the workers into the belie that the working class have interests in common with their employers.  These conditions can be changed and the interest o the working class upheld only by an organi"ation ormed in such a way that all its members in any one industry! or in all industries i necessary! cease work whenever a strike or lockout is on in any department thereo! thus making an in%ury to one an in%ury to all. &nstead o the conservative motto! 'A air day(s wage or a air day(s work!' we must inscribe on our banner the revolutionary  watchword! 'Abolition o the wage system.' &t is the historic mission o the working class to do away with capitalism. The army o production must be organi"ed! not only or everyday struggle with capitalists! but also to carry on production when capitalism shall have been overthrown. By organi"ing industrially we are orming the structure o the new society within the shell o the old.
 
Introduction
Born in Salt )ake *ity! William “Big Bill” Haywood +,-/0,/1-2 went to work in the mines at the age o nine. He %oined the Western 3ederation o $iners in ,-/ and was active as an e4ecutive board member and as secretary0treasurer o that organi"ation until ,/56. 7ne o the ounders and the best known o the &.W.W. leaders! he became its secretary0treasurer or ,/,0,-. &n September ,/,6 he was arrested and convicted under the 3ederal #spionage Act. &n ,/15! while out o )eavenworth 8enitentiary on bail! he led to the Soviet 9nion where! or a time! he was a leader o the American :u"bas *olony in Siberia. He died in $oscow in ,/1- ater  writing his memoirs! which he titled Against the *urrent.  They were published as Bill Haywood(s Book by &nternational 8ublishers +;ew <ork! ,/1/2.Haywood wrote several pamphlets and numerous articles. He  was one o the &.W.W.(s most amous lecturers. &n World o )abour +)ondon! ,/,=2! >. ?. H. *ole said@ 'Haywood could make himsel understood by a crowd that did not know a  word he said! merely by waving his arms and shouting.' 7n Haywood(s death! an obituary in The ;ation +$ay =5! ,/1-2 called him 'as American as Bret Harte or $ark Twain.'Haywood(s pamphlet The >eneral Strike +*hicago! n.d.2! published by the &.W.W.! was a summary o a speech he gave in ;ew <ork *ity on $arch ,! ,/,,.
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