June 11, 1969
Labor leader John L. Lewis dies. Born in Cleveland, IA, in 1880 to Welsh immigrant parents, Lewis went to work as a miner when he was a teenager. He worked as a mine workers’ organizer for the American Federation of Labor (AFL) and went on to serve the president of the United Mine Workers of America for 40 years. A firm believer in industrial unionism, Lewis formed the predecessor organization to what would become the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO).