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in order to make easier the further purchase of stocks so as to insure permanent control. Another opinion seems to have been that-inasmuch as the strike would make an immense increase in the cost of coal to the public-the anthracite trust would find it easier to fix a higher permanent level of prices than had existed before. Such a result would naturally reward the monopoly for a vast deal of temporary inconvenience. A third theory was that the coal operators were simply acting on behalf of a coalition of interests that now dominate a number of socalled trusts and combinations; and that this coalition is deeply opposed to organized labor, and desirous of crushing out trade-unionism.


According to this view, it was beism's Death lieved by the capitalists when the Sentence. strike came on last spring, that the time was favorable for meeting the Miners' Unión; and that the operators would certainly win a victory, destroy the prestige of Mr. Mitchell's organization, and, henceforth, have the labor situation wholly in their own hands. In any case, the strike seems to have been welcomed by the operators, who entered upon it without the slightest misgivings, not dreaming that they were destined to be humiliated and defeated in the end. The very ill-advised strike of the Amalgamated Iron and Steel Workers against the steel trust last year had ended in failure for the strikers; but it had also made combined capital a little too confident in its sheer strength, and had made it forgetful of the fact that " circumstances alter cases," and that every labor situation must be judged upon its own intrinsic merits. It should be understood that the main question all along has been, not whether the miners were justified in making certain specific demands having to do with wages and conditions of employment, but whether they were right in asking for the establishment of some regular way of dealing between capital and labor. Thus, the miners were fighting for a way to bring about orderly and decent conditions in the anthracite district; and the operators were fighting for the retention of anomalous and disorderly conditions.

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and leased or bought most of the coal lands, a new era was beginning. And when these railways ceased to compete with one another in the anthracite trade, and found a way to unite their coal interests, the new era was fairly launched. It is true that their spokesmen stated, last month, that there were still seventy-five different operators in the anthracite region; but, so far as the public is concerned, there is only one operator. On the side of the producing, carrying, and selling of coal, the situation is completely controlled by an organization in which the coal-carrying roads are leagued; this organization spoke for the entire anthracite business, last month, just as if there had been only one anthracite mine in the world, of which it was absolute owner. And when, finally, the situation became unbearable, the murmurs of public opinion began to grow louder until a tornado was imminent, and Mr. Morgan himself appeared on behalf of the joint coal and railway interests,-no coal-mine operator or railroad director ventured for a moment to deny that Mr. Morgan was authorized to speak for the combined capitalists, as completely as, on the other side, Mr. John Mitchell was authorized to speak for the combined laborers.

-Means Union


Thus, combined capital presented a on the Other solid front. Local mine owners had abdicated the responsibility of direct relations with their employees, and had allowed. all negotiations on their behalf to be carried on, first, by a board of railway officials meeting in New York, and, finally, by one New York banker. Effrontery, let it be said, could not have gone farther than for capital under these circumstances to deny to plain workingmen the right, for their own protection and advantage, to form associations and to deal with capital through their chosen agents or representatives. Not only was it reasonable that the coal miners should have been united in a great trade union ; but it was plainly to the advantage of legitimate owners and employers-in view of the existing situation-that this union should be recognized and dealt with. There is, indeed, far more reason for the existence of the one general organization of miners in the anthracite regions than in the bituminous States, for the simple reason that the whole anthracite business has been brought under control of a single monopoly, while nothing of the kind is true of coal-mining in the bituminous regions.

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States, the bituminous operators appoint a committee of representative employers which, every year, meets a representative committee of miners.. After due discussion, the wage-scales are fixed for a year to come on the plan of "collective bargaining," and the United Mine Workers hold their members to faithful keeping of these contracts. Thus, the turbulence and strife that were once almost chronic in the mining districts of such States as Ohio and Illinois are at an end, and employers and employed alike are warm in their approval of the new arrangement. All that Mr. John Mitchell has tried to bring about in the anthracite regions has been the adoption of a wage-scale upon the sensible, businesslike plan of mutual discussion and agreement. Mr. Mitchell's reasonableness and forbearance, during the past three years, in his endeavor to secure this desirable solution, have been worthy of the highest degree of praise.

But why, if Mr. Mitchell has wanted "Invincible, nothing but what was perfectly Ignorance.' reasonable, and as advantageous to

one side as to the other, has he met with such rebuffs? The answer is a perfectly simple one. The "powers that be" in Wall Street had never really known what it was that Mr. Mitchell wanted. They were in such a roaring, whirling maelstrom of speculation, company-promoting, railroad reorganization, rivalry among themselves, and the like, that it was practically imimpossible for anybody outside to shout against such a deafening noise. Mr. Mitchell, and the friends of sane and decent adjustment of the labor situation in Pennsylvania, never got a full hearing in those quarters. This inability to awake dormant intelligence in the seats of the mighty, had led to the strike of the fall of 1900.

The Strike of 1900.


Senator Hanna, who was managing the Republican presidential campaign, knew and understood Mr. Mitchell As the result of his own experience as a large bituminous coal operator, he approved of Mr. Mitchell's union and its methods; and he was able to secure a settlement of that strike by obtaining for the Pennsylvania miners a 10 per cent. increase in their wages. But even Mr. Hanna was not able to teach the leaders of Wall Street anything about the labor question. He could only arouse the capitalists to action by frightening them with the bugaboo of Bryanism. They conceded the 10 per cent. advance to stop the strike, without the slightest reference to the justice of the claims of the miners, merely because they were told that labor troubles in the campaign season might put William J. Bryan in

the White House. had won their strike; not on its merits at all, but through the by-play of politics. No attempt was made to deal frankly and directly with them. To avoid the necessity of communicating with them, the 10 per cent. advance was made known by notices posted up at the mines.

Mr. Mitchell and his men

The Situation

Through the politicians, however, as of the Spring intermediaries, Mr. Mitchell had been of 1901. assured that the 10 per cent. advance would hold good for six months, or until April, 1901. Then came the time for a permanent adjustment. But, again, it was impossible to secure any intelligent consideration of what was desired. A great strike was imminent; and Mr. Mitchell patient, modest, anxious to avert the crisis,— came to New York to secure through a recognition of his union a means for taking up gradually, one by one, the difficulties and grievances involved in the labor situation. The period was the most prosperous in the history of the country, and there could have been no possible excuse for cutting wages down to the former hard-times level. The miners, on the other hand, would have been content to leave wages where they were if owners had been willing to meet workers to consider frankly such a matter as the best plan of weighing coal, and other questions affecting the conditions of employment. Again Mr. Mitchell failed, yet not wholly; for he had received what he believed to be a tacit-though not an explicit

promise that if he could avert a general strike and keep the men at work another year, then he might fairly hope that, in the spring of 1902, his union would be recognized. Meanwhile, he was given reason to believe that a frank and fair investigation of actual conditions would be made in which he and his union would be allowed to participate. On the strength of these vague and indefinite understandings, Mr. Mitchell and the leading local officers of the miners' union went back to Pennsylvania, where, by sheer force of moral leadership, they restrained their justly irritated and impatient followers, and postponed sine die what had threatened to be the greatest strike in the history of the United States.

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miners and keeping the peace, the operators were using this year of truce to prepare themselves for war; and so, when the attempt was made in March and April of the present year by disinterested people to secure harmony and prevent a strike, it gradually became obvious that the union of capital had deliberately made up its mind to have nothing to do with the union of labor. Even then, Mr. Mitchell kept his wonderful self-control; counseled further patience; and did all that he could to prevent a strike, in the hope that the friends of arbitration would ultimately succeed. His advice did not prevail, however. The more radical leaders of the anthracite men carried the day, in a large and representative miners' convention; and so the strike was ordered.

Strike Leader.

Mr. Mitchell accepted the mandate Mitchell as of the convention, and as president of the organization did not shirk from the official duty to lead a strike which he had hoped to avert. No better strike leader than John Mitchell has ever emerged in any time of industrial strife in this country. As one means to bring public opinion to their support, the mine owners-through individuals and newspapers employed by them,-adopted a policy of calumny and slander against Mitchell personally. This policy completely failed through Mr. Mitchell's remarkable poise and self-control.

Never once was he provoked to bitterness or re. tort. All his utterances were statesmanlike in their tone of moderation and calmness; and, although the monopoly of capital was far more vulnerable than the organization of labor, Mr. Mitchell avoided recrimination, and said not one disagreeable word about the men who were pub licly saying so many false things about him. The excellent discipline and order maintained under Mr. Mitchell's leadership of the strikers will only be comprehended by an inquiry made in the historical and comparative spirit. Great industrial strikes are never as polite as ladies' missionary meetings, nor quite so free from turbulence as Sunday-school picnics. In the course of this Pennsylvania strike there was some crime, some disorder, and some unjust and wholly objection. able interference with the few non-union men who had not the disposition to coöperate with the great mass of their fellow-workers; but, as compared with former strikes in the Pennsylvania coal regions, or with former strikes in the bituminous regions of Ohio, Illinois, and various other States, or as compared with a dozen street railroad strikes in different American cities in recent months or years, this Pennsylvania strike was a peaceable affair. As an excuse to the public for not supplying coal, the operators continually stated that they could obtain an abundance of labor if the State of Pennsylvania would only protect their men against the vio

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The climax of Roosevelt's the situation was Intervention. reached when the President of the United States decided to invite Mr. Mitchell representing the miners, and the group of presidents of coal-carrying roads who were, jointly, leading the fight on the other side, to come to the White House on October 3, and allow him to express the urgency of the situation on behalf of the suffering public. The invitation having been accepted by both sides, there was a widespread hope that the end was near; this hope was dashed, however, by the results of the conference. President Roosevelt, in an admirable statement, impartial and conciliatory, called upon both sides regardless of what they might deem their rights, to make concessions in the interest of the country, as a whole. Mr. Mitchell, on behalf of the strikers, promptly rose, and offered to abide by the decision of any arbitrators appointed by President Roosevelt, and, meanwhile, to resume work. This proposal was what the President desired, and what the country regarded as reasonable. To the surprise, however, of the President, and to the dismay of the country, the group of gentlemen representing the employers arose one after another and read to the President a series of typewritten lectures, denouncing the strikers, refusing arbitration at President Roosevelt's hands, and calling upon the President to send federal troops to support the operators.


66 THE SO-CALLED TEMPORARY WHITE HOUSE." (Where President Roosevelt is living while the White House is undergoing extensive alterations, and where the coal strike was ended by the President's interposition.)

After this performance, the tide of A Final Test in American indignation ran higher than it has gone over any recent event except the assassination of President McKinley.

To test, however, the question whether or not the operators could mine coal if there were troops enough to keep the peace and protect the workers, Governor Stone, of Pennsylvania, called out the entire force of the State National Guard, some ten thousand men in all; and these troops were distributed at points where it was thought that trouble might arise. The upshot was that every local lodge of the miners' organization met to pass a vote of confidence in Mr. Mitchell, and to declare their determination to stand together and to maintain the strike. The ten thousand Pennsylvania troops found practically no disorder anywhere; and the promise of the operators that men would flock back to the mines was wholly unfulfilled. They then had the audacity to say that ten thousand troops were not enough, and that President Roosevelt ought to

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send a large contingent of the United States regular army. This, however, was obviously absurd. The available mine labor belonged to the union, and the union did not show the slightest sign of disintegration. Then the public began to turn its flashlights upon the anthracite monopoly itself, and to ask whether it should not be prosecuted under the Sherman anti-trust law. Complaints were lodged against it; and Attorney-General Knox, with the sanction of President Roosevelt, instructed the United States District Attorney at New York to listen to the evidence that might be offered in support of the petition, and to give the subject prompt investigation.



The coal question, meanwhile, had Politicians absorbed the entire attention of the community; and the politicians, of both parties, regarded it as having a vital bearing upon the pending Congressional and State campaigns. The Democrats of the State of New York were holding their convention, at this juncture; and they inserted in their platform a plank calling for the ownership and operation of the anthracite mines by the Government. Senator Quay, of Pennsylvania, and his colleague, Mr. Penrose, exerted themselves to the utmost to secure some concessions from the operators; and Governor Odell, and other leading Republican politicians of New York, joined in a

series of conferences which only secured for them the same kind of emphatic rebuff that President Roosevelt had met with at the hands of the operators. Governor Odell's answer took the practical form of proceedings instituted by the attorney-general of the State to ascertain whether the anthracite monopoly was in violation of the New York anti-trust law. Newspapers, mass meetings, boards of trade, and various organizations throughout the United States were at this time denouncing the Coal Trust and demanding its prosecution. Conspicuous lawyers like ex-Attorney-General Olney were scathing in their denunciations of the trust, and frank in their statements that it could be criminally prosecuted under the laws.

Mr. Morgan's

Meanwhile, the coal famine was beReversal of coming daily worse, and President the Operators. Roosevelt was striving day and night to find a way to bring it to an end. Mr. Morgan at length perceived that the country was determined to hold him responsible; and that the position so arrogantly maintained by the gentlemen who were regarded as his lieutenants, was untenable, and must be given up. Accordingly, after personal conferences at New York with Mr. Root, the Secretary of War.-Mr. Morgan on October 13 went to Washington, conferred with President Roosevelt, and finally agreed to leave all issues concerned to a board

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