Today in Labor History

Labor history is OUR history

January 5, 1891


Sheep shearers in Queensland, Australia, go on strike when the manager of a sheep ranch demands that they accept the ranchers’ new contract of “free labour” that undermines their union security, hours, and wages.  The strike was brutally suppressed by the government:  soldiers escorted and protected scabs, and union leaders were arrested, thirteen of whom were charged with conspiracy and sedition and sentenced to prison.


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