We have seen the side of the rich guys making the big bucks … but what about the men (and women and children) that were toiling in the factories during the age of industrial growth? Let’s find out …
It’s the late 1800s, and you are an industrial worker in one of the major factories in the Upper Midwest. You have decided to become part of a union – an organized group of workers who unite to push for improved working conditions. A new worker has asked you a series of questions about organized labor in order to determine if he should also join the union. How would you respond?
What are your complaints about your status as a worker during the late 1800s?(Check out Organized Labor from US History)
What are some of the ways management has responded to your ideas and actions? (Consult Labor vs. Management from US History, How Did Management Respond from Social Studies Help, and the first page of Labor and Labor Unions from Los Alamitos)
What has the government done (or not done) in response to your calls for change? (Try Labor Battles in the Gilded Age from Khan Academy – scroll down to “The federal government and the labor movement”)
Besides management and the government, what other challenges do Gilded Age unions face? (Check near the bottom of Organized Labor from US History)
AND FINALLY … WHY DOES THIS MATTER TODAY?
Still want more (and have some time)? Play the Labor in the Gilded Age simulation from Text Adventures. It has some solid content but some so-so graphics and text.