Page:Historical Catechism of American Unionism.pdf/24

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Association, and a boycott of those master mechanics who were suspected of being friendly to the union men.

82. Did the political effort succeed?
It accomplished none of the things to which it applied itself. The reforms it sought were later taken up as vote-getting expedients by the dominant political parties, and were thus legally established. As a preventative of industrial unity, from the capitalist point of view, these political parties were very successful; from the working class point of view, they were disastrous.
83. Did any unions continue during this period of political activity?
The typographical societies of New York and Philadelphia, which, however, were of a purely benevolent character since their incorporation, maintained a continuous existence. In 1833 the Philadelphia Typographical Association was formed whose "primary intention" was "the determination and support of adequate wages for journeymen printers".
In 1833 also, the Benevolent Society of Journeymen Tailors of New York divided. The militant members formed the United Society of Journeymen Tailors directed to industrial purposes whereupon the old society devoted itself, in part, to trade affairs and affiliated with the city central union.
The Pennsylvania Society of Journeymen Cabinet Makers, organized in 1806 and incorporated in 1825, revised its constitution in 1829 in order to apply itself industrially, by making it an objective "to establish a stated price, as a criterion for workmen to settle all disputes which may arise between them and their employers, in an amicable and satisfactory manner."
The United Beneficial Society of Cordwainers of Philadelphia during March 1835, held a meeting to organize all non-union shoemakers, and two months later voted to strike for higher wages.
84. What is worth noting about this period?
That division of labor was threatening the handcraftsmen. The period of apprenticeship covered from 5 to 7 years, when the full trade was learned. But now, only certain processes were necessary, and when an