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  • Marcus J. Hopkins

Learn About the Labor Movement in Appalachia


By Marcus J. Hopkins September 5th, 2022


In honor of Labor Day, the Appalachian Learning Initiative has curated a special recommended reading list of books about the struggles of the labor movement in Appalachia.


"Appalachians have a long history of being exploited for their labor," said Founder & Executive Director Marcus J. Hopkins. "Few Americans outside of Appalachia are aware of the bloody West Virginia Coal Wars that raged from 1912-1921, when workers fought against the Coal Barons for better wages, safer working conditions, an end to forced buying at company-owned stores, and membership in the United Mine Workers." Of particular significance is "Better World: Testimony to Congress on the Matewan Massacre: 1920/1921," which includes the testimony of Sid Hatfield who, just two weeks after his testimony, was murdered C.E. Lively and two Baldwin-Felts detectives.


"The labor movement is making a resurgence in the United States after decades of declining memberships in virtually every sector," continued Hopkins. "It is vitally important that we remember and honor the lives and struggles of Appalachians who fought so bravely to form and join unions." Check out the Labor Day 2022 Recommended Reading List by clicking on the button and please remember to buy using the links therein.


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