Industrial Workers of the World (IWW)

It is a wonder that mention of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) brings scant recognition from the average person today. In the little over a decade that it flourished, the union evoked intense emotions among its members and detractors. The IWW, whose members (commonly known as Wobblies) advocated such radical ideas as an eight hour work day and a forty hour work week, fought and sometimes won bitter freedom of speech fights, championed the causes of mineworkers in Bisbee, Arizona, and struck to improve the working conditions in the textile mills of Patterson, N.J. and Lawrence, Mass. In its heyday, the IWW was almost a household name. Wobblies were hated by many and loved by a few, but most importantly, they played a significant role in the shaping of modern America.

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