Strikes and lockouts--Railroads
Jim Bailey served as a general vice president of the Brotherhood Railway Carmen of the United States and Canada. Main Topics: Family history in railroad occupations; brief review of Bailey's career advancements with the Carmen's union; background on the Carmen's union and its role in the 1955 crafts strike against the L&N railroad; description of the L&N shop facilities in Montgomery, Alabama; Bailey's move to Louisville as General Chairman of the Joint Protective Board of the Carmen's union and the responsibilities of this position; some comments on the importance of the Railway Labor Act; Bailey's experiences on the national level as Grand Lodge Deputy and as a member of the General Executive Board; some of the specific responsibilities of the General Vice Presidents of the BRC of US&C; specific duties and responsibilities of Mr. Bailey's present position; listing of railroad occupations included in the BRC of US&C agreements and covered by their constitution adopted at Joint Convention, Topeka, Kansas, September, 1890.
Mildred Bradley is a retired worker at the South Louisville Shops. She was among a large group of women hired by the L&N Railroad during World War II. Main topics: Early life and jobs before employment with L&N; early working years at the L&N (good description of cleaning diesels and working with brick masons); postwar years; unionization and the importance for women; 1955 strike observations and experiences; limitations on women workers who continued to work at the South Louisville shops; background on International Brotherhood of Firemen and Oilers; special tools and aspects of Mildred Bradley's work; work experiences of father, Jess Davis; reflections on race relations in Kentucky and on the L&N Railroad. Wrap-up: comments on work including examples of how she dug the pits under the diesels and other heavy machines, and more explanation concerning union activities and records; reflections on what might have been if times had been different and compliments paid to Ms. Bradley.
Main topics: Early life, University of Tennessee, banks closed 1933, hired as draftsman and instrument man; moved with L&N; career from division engineer to Assistant Vice President of Personnel and Labor Relations. Areas of experience: 1955 railroad strike, merger with N.C.&St.L., DeCoursey line up Straight Creek, Hurricane Betsy, involved in C.E.&I., and work as independent consultant. Descriptive sections on L&N: L&N in 1937, life out on the line, track and bridge repair and streamlining of curves, divisions of the L&N and their boundaries. Changes in division boundaries through merger, operation department and its chain of command, South Louisville shops, reasons for moving personnel throughout the divisions, description of camp car gangs, defense facilities and industrial development. Sections on routine maintenance and projected maintenance: types of crossties, explanation of rail conditions, suppliers of ties and rails, lining bars on tracks with caller versus more modern techniques, laying of rail and spikes, condition of track in relation to derailments, single track repair schedule. Repairing procedure for damage of Hurricanes Betsy and Camille. Additional information on work crews and union jobs. Modernization in many areas: scheduling of construction work, rapid loading facilities, critical path method (PERK). Discussion of labor and personnel: good explanation of the Brotherhood's responsibility to the provision the Railway Act. Descriptions on labor consideration: Lace Curtain money, reasons some agreements take so long to be resolved, hard feelings carried over from the 1955 railroad strike, Clark's past experience that enabled him to understand labor's viewpoint. Final comments: Differences in position when Clark held position of Vice President Operations in Jacksonville; was working in labor relations during three mergers: N.C.&St.L.; N&W & the Virginian; and recent experience with the New England railroads.
Mr. Eye is a retired locomotive carpenter with a broad knowledge of the working of the South Louisville shops. Main topics: Early life and employment. South Louisville shops during World War II. Background on labor relations including comments on the 1922 and 1955 strikes on the L&N Railroad. Reflections on the steam locomotive and the change to diesel power. Physical considerations of work life at the South Louisville facilities. Modernization of the South Louisville shops. Various topics such as tours of the shops for main office personnel; positive feelings about work at the Louisville & Nashville Railroad. Phased out jobs, and cooperative efforts between the shops and other departments of the L&N.
C.W. (Wes) Shores was the General Chairman of the L&N side of the SCL/L&N System Board of the Brotherhood of Railway, Airline and Steamship Clerks (BRAC) working at the Union headquarters in Louisville, Kentucky. Main topics: background on early experiences concerning railroad yards; synopsis of Shores' union career advancements; description of the structure and present leadership of the union on the System Board and International levels; duties and responsibilities of the Louisville headquarters; grievance and claim procedures; procedure of moving BRAC employees to the Jacksonville area; benefits for employees initiated and negotiated by BRAC including activities connected with the 1955 strike against the L&N railroad; comments on merger experiences with various lines; description of the range of positions covered by the BRAC agreements; comments on equal opportunity hiring; additional personal comments on educational background.
Mr. Womack worked for many years for the Nashville, Chattanooga, and St. Louis Railway before it was merged with the L&N Railroad. This interview covers his return to full-time work after college on G.I. Bill. From 1949-1953, he was an operator in various locations in Alabama and Tennessee and an official in 1953. Discusses the 1955 strike and the merger with L&N in 1957.