Biography: John L. Lewis

Biography: John L. Lewis
Clip: 540839_1_1
Year Shot: 1947 (Estimated Year)
Audio: Yes
Video: B/W
Tape Master: 1845
Original Film: WPA 1908
Location: United States
Timecode: 01:52:21 - 01:54:50

Biography of U.S. labor leader John L. Lewis. LS crowded room during Senate Committee hearing. Grim-faced United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) President John L. Lewis seated at Senate Committee hearing, "In the first year of the recent World War, in a full 12 month period in which the United States was engaged after the declaration of war by the Congress, the casualties in the coal mining industry exceeded the casualties of all our armed forces on any sea or in any land. Yet we can't get the mining laws enforced. We can't induce the several states to enforce their own mining laws. And we can't induce the government of the United States to carry out its own contracts and its own promises, henceforth, its own safety rules and regulations. (Lewis bangs table) The Director of the Bureau of Mines said there were two mines only that didn't violate the code. Now on this particular day of Our Lord, Mr. (Julius) Krug has found 518 mines that he shuts down because they're unsafe. May God in Heaven forgive him for not finding those out before him taking action long delayed before these men died. (Senate Committee panel listening somberly.) He just permitted them to die by negligence and inaction and by dishonorable violation of his own agreement made with the United Mine Workers of America. His promise given to the coal miners and to the American people, that's all he's done. And in so doing, I think he's dishonored his office. And I think he's brutalized the mine workers. And I think he's brought confusion and bitterness and economic loss to the American people."