Monday, February 18, 2008

This Date in Arkansas Labor History

February 18, 1935. George Clifton Edwards Jr., 20-year old field organizer for the League for Industrial Democracy, arrested and jailed on charge of barratry for leading march of striking relief workers in Fort Smith. Later nominated by President John F. Kennedy to the United State Court of Appeals and renominated by President Lyndon B. Johnson, confirmed in 1963 and served as Chief Judge 1979-1983.

February 18, 1916. UMWA coal miner Fred Strope severely injured by gas explosion in Clarksville mine of Sterling Anthracite Coal Company and died 11 days later. Sterling denied any fault or responsibility for the accident or for his death, although their fire boss had marked area free of gas before the explosion.

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