THE GREAT RAILROAD STRIKE OF 1877
The Great Railroad Strike, the largest industrial strike of the nineteenth century, revealed polarized views on workers' rights...
[Give strikers complaining of hunger] a rifle diet for a few days and see how they like that kind of bread!
In just one issue of the New York Times, strikers were referred to as disaffected elements, roughs, hoodlums, rioters, mob, suspicious-looking individuals, bad characters, thieves, blacklegs, looters, communists, rabble, labor-reform agitators, dangerous class of people, gangs, tramps, drunken section-men, law breakers, threatening crowd, bummers, ruffians, loafers, bullies, vagabonds, cowardly mob, bands of worthless fellows, incendiaries, enemies of society, reckless crowd, malcontents, wretched people, loud-mouthed orators, rapscallions, brigands, robbers, riffraff, terrible felons, idiots.
The country was in a feverish state of excitement from Boston to San Francisco, from the Lakes to the Gulf.
[The strike] was the calcium light that illumined the skies of our social and industrial life, and revealed the pinched faces of the workers and the opulence, arrogance and unscrupulousness of the rich.