Massachusetts. State Board of Arbitration and Con Massachusetts.

Annual report of the State Board of Arbitration and Conciliation online

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sioner of labor statistics and inspection, who shall be president
of the board.

Sec. 3. The board shall have power to summon and examine
witnesses and hear the matter in dispute, and, within three days
after the investigation, render a decision thereon, which shall
be published, a copy of which shall be furnished each party in
dispute, and shall be final, unless objections are made by either
party within five days thereafter : Provided, that the only effect
of the investigation herein provided for shall be to give the
facts leading to such dispute to the public through an unbiased

Sec. 4. In no case shall a board of arbitration be formed
when work has been discontinued, either by action of the em-
ployer or the employes; should, however, a lockout or strike
have occurred before the commissioner of labbr statistics could

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be notified, he may order the formation of a board of arbitra-
tion npon resumption of work.

Sec. 5. The board of arbitration shall appoint a elerk at
each session of the board, who shall receive three dollars per day
for his services, to be paid, upon approval by the commissioner
of labor statistics, out of the fund appropriated for expenses
of the bureau of labor statistics. lApproved April 11 j 1889.


Chapter 46, of the Acts of 1890, defining the duties of the
Commissioner of Agriculture and Labor, has the following : —

Sectiok 7. If any difference shall arise between any cor-
poration or person, employing twenty-five or more employes, and
such employes, threatening to result, or resulting in a strike on
the part of such employes, or a lockout on the part of such em-
ployer, it shall be the duty of the commissioner, when requested
so to do by fifteen or more of said employes, or by the em-
ployers, to visit the place of such disturbance and diligently
seek to mediate between such employer and employes.


The law creating the Bureau of Laber and Industrial Statis-
tics of the State of Nebraska, defines the duties of the chief
ofificer as follows : —

Sec. 4. The duties of said commissioner shall be to collect,
collate and publish statistics and facts relative to manufacturers,
industrial classes, and material resources of the state, and es-
pecially to examine into the relations between labor and capital ;
the means of escape from fire and protection of life and health
in factories and workshops, mines and other places of industries *,
the employment of illegal child labor ; the exaction of unlawful
hours of labor from any employee ; the educational, sanitary,
moral, and financial condition of laborers and artisans ; the cost
of food, fuel, clothing, and building material; the causes of
strikes and lockouts, as well as kindred subjects and matters
pertaining to the welfare of industrial interests and classes.
lApproved March 31 y 1887.

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PUBLIC DOCUMENT .... .... No. 40.


State Board of Arbitration
AND Conciliation

Fob the Year bnding Dbobmbbr 31, 1900.



18 Post Office Squabs.


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WABBSN A. REED, Chairman.


Boom 128. State Housei Boston.

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Introductory, 9

J. Brown & Sons, Salem, 21

Cigar Makefs, Boston, 23

Robinson Brewing Company, Boston, 24

American' Hide and Leather Company, Lowell, .... 27

W. L. Douglas Shoe Company, Brockton, 30

Machinists, Brockton, 32

Standish Worsted Company, Plymouth, 36

Bridge and Structural Ironworkers, Boston, .... 37

Hatch & Grinnell, Easton, 38

Gratfite Cutters, Quincy, 39

American Woollen Company, Lowell, 44

American Hide and Leather Company, Wobum, ... 46

Beggs & Cobb, Winchester, 46

Painters and Decorators, Boston, 47

Brewery Engineers, Boston, ~ . . 49

Brewery Firemen, Boston, 62

Holzer-Cabot Electric Company, Brookline, .... 63

United Shoe Machinery Company, Winchester, .... 66

N. L. Millard & Co., North Adams, 68

George Lawley & Sons, Boston, 60

Boston Manufacturing Company, Waltham, .... 62

Blake & Knowles, Cambridge, 63

Burley & Stevens, Newbury port, 64

Ludlow Manufacturing Company, Ludlow, .... 66

J. H. Home & Sons Company, Lawrence, 69

Ingalls & Kendricken, Boston, 71

Ingalls & Kendricken, Boston, 72

Boston Steel and Lron Company, Boston, 74

Hamilton Manufacturing Company, Lowell, .... 76

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Merrimack Manufacturing Company, Lowell, .... 79

Hamilton Manufacturing Company, Lowell, .... 83

Jordan, Marsh & Co., Boston, 84

American Hide and Leather Company, Lowell, .... 85

A. B. Franklin, Boston, 86

Master Steam Fitters, Boston, * 88

Carpenters^, Maiden, 91

John St. John, Holyoke, 95

McArthur Brothers Company, Clinton, 97

The Fitchburg Machine Company, Fitchburg, * . . . 98

M. J. Perrault, Fitchburg, 99

Butchers and Grocers^ Clerks, Springfield, ..... 100

Thomas 6. Plant Company, Boston^ 101

S. Shapiro, Boston, 103

Humphrey & Paine, Marblehead, 104

Boston & Albany Railroad Company, West Springfield, . , 105

Thomas G. Plant Company, Boston, 108

Acushnet Mill Corporation, New Bedford, .... 110

Hathaway Manufacturing Company, New Bedford, . . . 110

Acushnet Mill Corporation, New Bedford, 112

Hathaway Manufacturing Company, New Bedford, . . 112

Leonard Shoe Company, Lynn, 114

George W. Belonga, Lynn, 11^

W. L. Douglas Shoe Company, Brockton, 117

Master Printers, Boston, IW


Arbitration in the United States, 127

Compulsory arbitration, ISB

United States statute of 1898, 130

State boards : —

Massachusetts, . 186,

Expert assistants, . .' 141

New York, 14fi

Montana, 146

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State boards— concluded,

Michigan, 150

California, 168

New Jersey, 155

Supplementary law, 160

Ohio 161

Louisiana, 166

Wisconsin, 170

Minnesota, 174

Connecticut, 178

Illinois, 180

Utah, 185

Indiana, 188

Idaho, 194

Colorado, 200

Local boards and other tribunals : —

Wyoming 204

Maryland, 204

Kansas, 207

Iowa, 210

Pennsylvania, 215

Texas, 218

Missouri, 223

North Dakota, 224

Nebraska, 224

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To the Senate and House of RepresentcUives in General Court assembled.
It has been the custom of the Board during the fourteen
years of its existence to submit, as its annual report, a
concise statement, in narrative form, of the facts in each
controversy which has engaged its attention during the pre-
ceding year. We see no reason for change in this respect.
No other form of report would be likely to furnish a better
record of the actual work done by the Board or illustrate
more clearly its scope and methods. And yet, when these
details have been recounted, there seems something still
left to say. The interest of the public in industrial concili-
ation and arbitration is increasing. The subject is, per-
haps, as important as any of those occupying the minds of
the people to-day. It may not be amiss, therefore, if sug-
gestions that have occurred to the Board while attending
to its duties are added to the reports of cases.

Considering the comparatively short time that has elapsed
since the question of an amicable settlement of industrial
troubles has been before the community, its solution has
made satisfactory, even remarkable, progress. Although
strikes took place in this country even in the eighteenth
century, and for many years prior to 1877 were not un-
common, still, the latter date, when the first great historic
strike occurred, may be said to mark the beginning of the

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pubUc attention to the subject. During the last quarter
of a century our people have been getting acquainted with
the problem. The fear and timidity of a large part of the
community who saw a Robespierre or a Marat in every
labor leader have largely given place to a feeling of confi-
dence that in these questions the American people will use
that reason and good sense which have stood them in good
stead so often before. Twenty-five years is a short period
in which to bring forward a social question of such magni-
tude as this, and to place it fairly and fully before the
public at large. And yet it appears to be true that the
public is fully awakened on this subject and is rapidly
advancing towards steps for its solution. It is not ad-
vancing, however, as rapidly as it would wish. Impatient
of waiting, now that the problem has been enunciated,
it would reach the end of the matter in one step. Some
ready-made plan is hoped for which will settle the whole
question; some formula, which will bring the correct
answer every time. Notwithstanding its eagerness, how-
ever, it is not improbable that the community will need
to exercise a large amount of patience before it has its
riddle read. Such questions as these have an exasperating
way of taking their own time for a solution.

The truth is, a good many different interests will have
to be harmonized before we can go very deep into this
subject. Whether the public has any rights or duties in
the matter of an equitable solution of the labor problem,
and, if so, what is their nature and extent? What are the
rights of organized labor, unorganized labor and organized
capital? When are combinations lawful and when are they
conspiracies? All these questions must be worked out in
a spirit of fairness and definitely settled. It is not to be

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1901.] PUBLIC DOCUMENT — No. 40. 11

expected that interests so different should be composed
except under the influence of time. Plans for settling
industrial difficulties are not few, but those which com-
mend themselves most to thinkers may be divided into two
classes : on the one hand, those in which the public under-
takes a part, either indirectly by moral influence, called
public opinion, or directly by requiring a submission of
irreconcilable differences to some tribunal having a power
to enforce its decision; or, on the other hand, those in
which the public has no part, or, as it is sometimes put,
is not allowed to interfere, and in which all questions are
settled by employer and employee among themselves, in
such manner as may be mutually agreed upon.

The right of the public to appear in the contest is as
stoutly claimed on one side as it is denied on the other, and
it is not impossible that this question will press itself for-
ward for solution even more in the future than it has in
the past.

As a moral factor, public opinion is likely to enter into
the settlement of the economic questions in a large degree
in the future, and perhaps may so mould the conceptions
of both the employer and employee that a much easier so-
lution than we can now see may become possible. It is not
to be expected that schemes will be wanting where the neces-
sity for results has become so apparent, and, indeed, it is to
the credit of any person or body of persons that they are
sufficiently interested in the subject honestly to bring for-
ward plans for the settlement of these vexed questions. In
examining each, it should be remembered that the subject
is in its experimental stage, and that we cannot afford to
dogmatize. Toleration of the views of all who desire to
assist in solving the problem is much to be commended.

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An examination of the cases that have occupied the atten-
tion of the Board during the past year will show an unmis-
takable trend toward conciliation rather than arbitration
as a means of settling disputes. Arbitration, at present,
lags behind conciliation as a factor in composing labor
troubles. The prevailing opinion regarding the former
seems to be that it is an excellent thing in all quarrels but
one's own. Conciliatory methods, by which the parties
retain control of the proceedings, instead of submitting
the issue to a third person, are of highest importance and
deserve careful study. The evident tendency of the parties
to labor difficulties to enter into conference concerning
the causes of dispute is the distinguishing characteristic of
the present stage of the labor problem. It is the part of the
mediator to make the most of this tendency. Here is a
distinct step in advance of the belligerent attitude. When
men will reason together, they are already well advanced
toward a peaceful solution of their differences. A large
part of the trouble in the labor world is caused by misunder-
standing, suspicion, lack of confidence, and an inability to
see the other side. In such cases conferences, entered into
in a proper spirit, are remarkably successful.

The value of conciliatory methods of treatment is becom-
ing better understood than it used to be, and it seems clear
that they are susceptible of still more satisfactory develop-

Mediation looking to bring about a conference between
parties who are not inclined to reason together is the first
action of the Board in most cases, and is often all that is

It has been the practice of the Board to recommend a
settlement by direct negotiation, when possible. In many

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1901.] PUBLIC DOCUMENT — No. 40. 13

instances such advice has been responded to with signal

It is in this class of cases, more than in any other, that
the community, by enlightened public opinion, can assist
in bringing about industrial peace. Whatever method is
employed that tends to substitute reason for passion and
force should have the sympathy of the community. Public
opinion is a factor in labor troubles of ever-increasing im-
portance, and to the extent of asking men to reason to-
gether about labor difficulties should let its voice be heard.
Progress along the same line is indicated by the tendency
of employers and employed to enter into joint trade agree-
ments. We have had occasion in previous reports to com-
mend the wisdom of the policy of prevention of trouble in
the labor world by anticipatory agreements. It is gratify-
ing to note that the disposition to favor such agreements
continues, and that they are becoming common.

The recent conference of the National Civic Federation
in Chicago deserves mention, as marking an era in the his-
tory of this subject. This association has put the whole
country in its debt by bringing the subject of conciliation
and arbitration to the front, and has shown the value of full,
free and honest interchange of opinion. It is to be hoped
that its successful beginning will lead the way to other
similar conferences.

In arbitration cases, the provision relating to expert
assistants continues to show itself to be a most wise and use-
ful adjunct to the original law. In such cases, each side
may nominate, and the Board may appoint, a person to
act as expert assistant to the Board. The two persons so
appointed must be skiHul in and conversant with the business
concerning which the dispute has arisen. It is their duty

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to obtain and report to the Board information concerning
wages paid and the methods and grades of work prevailing
in manufacturing establishments within the Commonwealth
of a character similar to that in which the dispute^may have
arisen ; to attend the sessions of the Board when required ;
and to submit to the Board any facts, advice, arguments or
suggestions, which they may think relevant. Such assist-
ants are able to point out and elucidate the mysteries of
every art, and to lay bare the issues in every controversy.

In aU cases during the past nine years, since the law has
provided for their appointment, the Board has been fortu-
nate in the choice of expert assistants who have been able
to make clear the technicalities involved in questions sub-
mitted to it.

In the last annual report reference was made to the fact
that the Board had sent to the department of social econ-
omy of the Paris Exposition of 1900 an exhibit calculated
to show its work and methods. We are pleased to say that
the exhibit received the grand prize or highest award in its
class. It is a matter of satisfaction that the work of the
Board during its first thirteen years should receive, in
competition with aU nations, this marked approval of a jury
of experts in the department of industrial relations.

On July 1 the commission of Mr. Walcott expired by
limitation, and on September 10 he was succeeded by
Warren A. Reed of Brockton.

During the past year the Board mediated in 64 difficulties
in the following counties : —

Berkshire, .

. 1

Hampden, .

. 4

Plymouth, .

. 4

Bristol, . .

. 6

Middlesex, .

. 12

Suffolk,. .

. 17

Essex, . .

. 6

Norfolk,. .

. 2

Worcester, .

. 3

And 19 industries were involved, as follows: —

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lUttert Id Dlspate.


Settled bj —

2, higher wages, .

2, lower wages, .

3, price lists,

1, terms of agreement,
1, fair amount of product,
1, care of clothes,

1, retention of foreman,

8, higher wages, .

3, rate for overtime, .

2, fair amount of product,
1, terms of agreement,

1, unpaid loss of time,

1, membership in union,

2, higher waf es, .

3, nine-hour aay,

1, membership in union,

2, retaining non-union men.
1, terms of lup'eement,

1, revision of agreement,

4, higher wages, .

2, higher wages, .

1, right to discharge, .
1, wages and hours, .

1, non-union plumbers,

1, higher wages, .

2, higher wages, .

1, concerning engineers,

1, retention of foreman,

1, alleged unfairness, .

1, higher wages, .

1, eight-hour day,

1, reduced wages,

1, higher wages, .

1, wages, revision of list,

1, recognition of union,

1, higher wages, .

^Shoe, 11,

, 11, . j




> Machine, 6,

> Steamfitting,

Leather, 4,
Iron building, 2

> Engineer, 2,

> Carpenter, 2,

Iron foundry, 2,

Boiler making,
Cigar, .
Granite, .
Laborers, .
Painters, .
Printers, •
Clothing, .

A^eement, . . 7
Hiring new hands, 2
Arbitration, . . 2

Hiring new hands, 4
Strikers^ return, . 4
Compromise, . . 3

Hiring new hands, 3
Strikers' return, . 3

Discharge of the

non-union men,
(Pending), .

Compromise, .

Granting demand.
Compromise, .

Waiver, .
Granting demand.

Joining a union,
(Pending), .

Hiring new hands,
(Pending), ,

Engineers' return.

Agreement, .

(Pending), .

Annulling strike.

Granting demand,

Strikers' return.

Granting demand.

Granting both.

Hiring new hands,

Granting demand.

Agreement relative to adjustment through negotiation
has, in many factories, prevented differences, or retarded

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their growth into serious disputes, and lessened the num-
ber of difficulties that attract the attention of the public.
Such difficulties, having been referred to the Board, and
those in other quarters where amicable relations have
been tacitly preserved, are classed as "friendly contro-
versies." The speedy collapse of some strikes is as silent
as their onset was startling; others are maintained in
theory after they have ceased to obstruct business. Such
results appear below as ** vanished."

The cases of the past year fall into three groups at each
of the three stages following : —

In respect of origin : —



Friendly controversies, ....

With regard to official action : —

On joint petition,

On notice from one part^, . .

Of the Board^s own motion, . . . ,

In view of results (neglecting fractions)
oetxieci, ....... I





























The ratio of referred cases to those in which the Board
offered its mediation is about as 3 to 5.

The vanished controversies had strike histories, and
ended in 9 cases by the workmen's returning on the
employers' terms, and in the other 11 by permanent
loss of situation.

Four of the controversies still pending are amicably
conducted ; the other has a history of lockout and dimi-
nution of business.

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1901.] PUBLIC DOCUMENT — No. 40. 17

There were 27 conciliations, or 60 per cent, of all
cases, and 2 arbitrations, or 4 per cent., nearly, making
a total of 29 settlements, or 54 per cent., nearly.

The value of the positive result shown by these tables
will, we believe, be much enhanced on further consideration.
It will be noted that half of the foregoing strikes ended in
defeat, that is to say, 20 ; and that one of the employers
resorting to a lockout was obliged to curtail his business.
Viewed on the low plane of immediate self-interest, such
expedients, having been resorted to without a fair prospect
of success, can hardly be deemed other than rash. To get
a fair estimate of '* state interference," allowance ought to
be made for that element of rashness which persists " to the
bitter end," and is not amenable to the good offices of any-
body. Eliminating, therefore, these 21 cases from the total
number treated by the Board, leaves 33 controversies, of
which 29 were settled mostly by conciliation, while 4 re-
main to be settled in a friendly way.

Twenty strikes and 3 lockouts were finally settled ami-
cably, as were 6 friendly controversies. The result is grati-
fying; but the gratification would be greater, if, in the
cases of strike or lockout, the better way had been resorted
to in the beginning. Sixty per cent, of the friendly differ-
ences were settled satisfactorily to both sides. At the same
rate, about 14 disputes aggravated by strike or lockout
might have been settled without loss of business and profit,
and without loss of wages and health. Like advantages
would also accrue to the parties to the other 9 cases during
the pendency of the matters in dispute.

It has been said, in extenuation of strikes and lockouts,
that they serve at least to compel attention to grievances.
A study of our cases in the past year does not favor the
view that they conduce in any way to a remedy ; for only

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50 per cent, of the strikes and 25 per cent, of the lockouts,
of all about 47 3-4 per cent., were in any measure success-
ful, and then for the most part as resulting from mediation
and negotiation ; while 60 per cent, of the friendly contro-
versies were settled amicably, leaving the other friendly
controversies on the way to such result.

Reports of the principal controversies which the Board
has taken cognizance of during the year are to be found in
the following pages. The yearly earnings of the persons
involved are estimated at $2,948,588. The total yearly
earnings in the factories, etc., are estimated at $9,004,006.
The cost of maintaining the Board for the year has been

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Early in January the shoe cutters employed by J. Brown
& Sons at Salem presented to the firm a written demand for
increased prices, which the employers pronounced excessive ;
and a conference was held on January 8, in the presence of
the Board. The men, represented by the organizer of the
American Federation of Labor, offered certain prices per
week as an alternative. The employers said that under the
old scale of prices men were able to earn more than these
amounts; but the firm would accept a list that would yield
the desired minimum, provided the distribution of prices be
left to the judgment of the State Board of Arbitration, con-
sidering the quality of stock, the method of manufacture
and a fair average amount of product in a week of fifty-nine

The conference resulted in a disagreement, and a strike
ensued on January 9. An application dated January 10
was received by the Board. A conference was held on the
12th, at which the employer amended the application, in
response to a request .of the general president of the Boot

Online LibraryMassachusetts. State Board of Arbitration and Con MassachusettsAnnual report of the State Board of Arbitration and Conciliation → online text (page 54 of 70)