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amount of good has come from the system. Naturally, the
men who are directing it see a union as a monkey-wrench
in the machinery. Even were it not certain that unions
would weaken or remodel the welfare movement, mill own-
ers would combat the organization of a people whom they
believe to be intellectually too immature to use power

The company-owned village gives the mill-men two lines
of defence. A silent, smoothly-working pressure to keep
people with suspected "industrial philosophy" out of each
village or to suppress their union leanings after they are in,
is maintained through the tenant relationship. A good south-
ern superintendent knows, or can get for the asking, inti-
mate facts about any of his people. Once a local union
has been exploded into a mill community, the employer can
fall back upon his extraordinary powers as owner of the
settlement. In a strike he can evict, arrest through deputies
paid by himself, forbid trespass to organizers, prevent dis-
tribution of literature, close meeting halls, influence mer-
chants to refuse credit, even array local mill-subsidized
ministers against the union. He need not always overtly
exercise these powers to make them effective. Wholesale
eviction, for instance, is seldom carried out because it shifts
sympathy to the workers. But in a pinch they are avail-
able to break anything but the most strongly entrenched

General opinion in the region is strongly against any ex-

tensive unionization of the mill workers. Civic shame in
the union-fanned and occasionally violent outbursts of dis-
content, business losses, the possible brake on industrial
growth for a particular town which permits unions to be-
come domiciled, what is left of sectional feeling plus a
sound distaste for the character of some of the organizers
who have blustered through the region, all set the middle
classes against cotton mill unions. Many agree with the
employers that the process of redemption from neglect has
not yet gone far enough to make release from paternalism
wise or to make unions of a sort different from the old strike
gangs possible.

But the basic difficulty lies in the surplus of labor. Ex-
cept .in times of the greatest activity, a large reserve of
hands is drifting from village to village. It is usually only
a matter of days or weeks until mills can be filled with

Lastly, northern textile unionism is notoriously of the
thinnest. Scarcely forty thousand of the three-quarters of
a million textile workers outside the South belong to unions
at all. Even this membership is split into two uncooper-
ative camps, with a dozen small independents struggling in
local areas. The United Textile Workers has never been
able to afford the large sums that continuous organization
in the South requires. Its campaigns have been successful only
when and as long as help came from the A. F. of L. For
such time as disunity prevails in the North it is difficult to
see how the efforts in the South can be other than inter-
mittent, unless the impossible happens and some campaign
sets off a self-supporting movement among the Southern

At intervals for thirty years union agents have been com-
ing back to New England after a scouting tour in the South
with reports that the region is "ripe for organization." It
is easy to see some of the things that lead the. union this
time to believe that it can at least find a few mellow spots.
The depression of 1920 came just when it looked as if
success had been finally won in the South. The union
expected the bad times to be only a temporary interruption
to its progress. Now, with prosperity of a sort back in the
southern mills, it hopes to gather the threads dropped six
years ago. Something is left of the network of partially
trained leaders and the thousands of union sympathizers.
Xot a few villages still have charters waiting in attics until
reorganization comes.

A NUMBER of skilled textile crafts, one under the
/JL jurisdiction of a powerful northern association, have
come into the region. It is possible that workers in these
by-industries may assume a position of leadership like that
of the mule-spinners of New England, who for many years
"fought the battles of the textile workers alone." The
U. T. W., remembering the manner in which the difficulties
of 1919-21 were met, must have been helped in deciding
many tactical points: what towns in the region offer it
the first chance of success ; whether it will gain most in
a new attempt by emphasizing or smoothing over craft lines
in the mills ; what are its best channels for giving publicity
to its program (it will miss Barrett's now defunct Charlotte
Herald, which provided back-talk from the operatives to the
views of the less tolerant employers) ; whether, if the cam-
paign is successful, it will do best by encouraging a wildfire
spread into isolated villages or by building a solid core of
membership in the more completely industrialized towns.

July 15, 1927


Certain elements of southern opinion, there is reason to be-
lieve, will be more suspicious of anti-union propaganda than
in the early post-war years.

And in the time since the last collapse in the South, the
U. T. W. itself shows signs of a subtle change. Less is
heard about its "militancy" and more about its "readiness
to cooperate with employers." The new official policy of
the A. F. of L. was leavening the textile union four or five
years ago. The influence within the union of the progres-
sive organization of full-fashioned hosiery operatives, an
infusion of the new unionism from the extinct Amalgamated
Textile Workers, and a closer tie with the workers' educa-
tion movement have led the union to emphasize a phase of
peaceful labor tactics hitherto neglected in the strain of
endless conflicts. It was the exclusive attention of the

union to its fighting side that so antagonized southern em-

The new cooperativeness is yet by no means paramount
in the organization, but if it grows it may provide in the
South an escape from the old rigid alternative of abject
labor dependence or recurrent labor war.

These changes since the last big effort make it possible
that the United Textile Workers will have a fair field to
show its best performance in the South. But a few false
steps in the struggles of a developing campaign may still
wreck the drive on some wholly irrelevant matter. Again,
it is possible that internal quarrels or a persistent lukewarm-
ness in the southern workers may cause the union to retire
without shooting its bolt. Such an abortive campaign was
launched and withdrawn in 1923.

Unionism Succeeds Among English Teachers


THE story of the success of unionism among the
teachers of England and Wales ought to encourage
those American trade unionists who have some
misgivings about the possibility of organizing the
so-called white collar groups. Here is an or-
ganization which, through its long history, has made re-
markable progress despite hardships and many difficulties.
I spent nearly a month in London last summer. Much of
my time was used gathering information on the history and
growth of the National Union of Teachers. Some of this
information was secured directly from Frank W. Goldstone,
general secretary of the union.

Fifty years ago the salary of English teachers was in-
credibly small; and there was considerable poverty, misery
and distress among them. It was not uncommon for the
better-paid teachers to support relief work in behalf of their
less fortunate comrades.

When the National Union of Teachers, embracing
England and Wales, was organized in 1870, its first effort
was to provide some means for meeting the urgent needs
of teachers in financial difficulty. This work was begun by
the establishment of the Benevolent and Orphan Fund in
1877 "for the purposes of assisting teachers in distress and
of relieving the widows and orphans of deceased teachers."
This fund disbursed approximately $200,000 in 1924 for
relief, loans, and for the Boys' Home and the Girls' Home
founded by the fund. Its relief work covered 1,514 cases.
Membership in the fund is open to teachers not eligible to
join the union as well as to union members.

The N. U. T. has more than 117,000 members. In 1924
the membership was 112,000. That year Local Associations
numbered 612 covering every part of England and Wales.
The Local Associations are combined in 56 County Asso-
ciations. Members of the N. U. T. include teachers in
Elementary, Secondary, Technical, Nautical, Commercial,
Poor Law, Army, Navy and Aircraft Schools, Training
Colleges and Universities.

Some of the most distinguished educators of England and
Wales belong to the Union, and several of them have held
and now hold important positions in the Government.
Mr. Goldstone, the General Secretary of the Union, was
for eight years a member of Parliament. The present

Secretary of the Parliamentary Committee is a former
President of the Union and a member of Parliament.

The N. U. T. has won the recognition of the Govern-
ment including Parliament and the Department of Edu-
cation and the leading education bodies of England. The
Union has exerted great influence on Government Legis-
lation in behalf of teachers. Through its activities the
Superannuation Act of 1918 was improved in 1925 so that
the Death Gratuity accruing to a beneficiary of a teacher
after 30 years' contributary service is practically doubled.

The N. U. T. has two general aims: educational and
professional. It proposes a more equal distribution of edu-
cational funds for the benefit of the poorer schools and the
smaller districts; better facilities in these localities for higher
education, and more attention to vocational guidance. It
aims also at a larger and better prepared staff of teachers
so that the classes, especially in the elementary and secondary
schools, may be reduced in size.

The professional aims of the Union include "the establish-
ment of a highly qualified, publicly recognized, independent
learned Profession, with emoluments and other conditions
of service commensurate with their work for the State."
It is advocating a Court of Appeals as a safe-guard against
the unjust dismissal of teachers. It believes that teachers
should have greater freedom in making school programs
meet local needs.

The N. U. T. is rendering a great deal of help to its
members. It furnishes the best information obtainable on
professional matters. It gives assistance in any difficulties
which its members may have with school authorities, in-
cluding help at law.

A FAMOUS example of the Union's legal aid to mem-
bers is the case of Miss Spurral, who while a labor
candidate was accused by a conservative journalist of teach-
ing seditious doctrines in her school. The Union took up
Miss Spurral's defense, and through its counsel won her
case. As a result, she was awarded $1,000.00 damages by
the Court.

The efforts of the N. U. T. to raise teachers' salaries
have been productive of good results. The "Fisher" Grant
was obtained in 1918, amounting to nearly $10,000,000.00


to increase teachers' salaries. By 1914 these campaigns had
forced the Government to raise teachers' salaries in half
of the three hundred and twenty scales then in existence.

According to figures published recently by the Board of
Education, teachers' salaries have increased on the average
as follows:

1914 1923

Certificated Head Teachers Men $885 $2,050

Women 630 1.635

Uncertificated Assistant Teachen Men 340 910

Women 285 740

An interesting phase of the financial activities of the
N. U. T. is the history of the Teachers' Provident Society
established in 1878. From a small beginning this Society
has become a great financial institution handling millions
of dollars each year. This Society offers to its members
sick benefits, life insurance, pensions, endowments and loans
on freehold and leasehold property at exceptionally low

The Accumulated Funds of the Society exceed
$12,500,000.00 and its annual income is more than

During the war the Feminist Movement invaded the
ranks of the National Union of Teachers; and by 1917
the question of sex equality was the outstanding issue before
the Union. Discontented women members claimed that the
N. U. T. was not vigilant enough in its efforts to equalize
the pay of men and women, and the dissatisfied women
teachers finally seceded from the Union. This group founded
the National Union of Women Teachers. The membership
of the N. U. W. T. is approximately 10,000.

The agitation begun by the feminists in the N. U. T.
caused discontent among some of the men. These men
claimed that the N. U. T. was under the domination of
women and that too much time was spent in discussing the
problems of women teachers. This group also withdrew
from the N. U. T. and organized the National Association
of Schoolmasters. The Association has a membership of
about 6,000.

The National Union of Teachers, despite these diffi-
culties, has accomplished much toward the freedom of
teachers and the liberalizing of thought in England. The
Union has fostered self-respect, dignity and initiative among
its members.

In England the Scopes trial was a huge joke. Referring
to this trial, Mr. Goldstone laughingly remarked to me:
"England is never likely to have a Monkeyville." Even
the radicals in the schools of England are freer from perse-
cution and injustice than our radicals in America. And
this situation, as Mr. Goldstone pointed out to me, is due
very largely to the influence of the National Union of

What Do They Get Out of It?


I LIVED on a farm all my life, going through the regular
routine of a farmer's daughter, helping with the farm
work, and attending the district school ; and when I was
old enough I went to town, taking up dressmaking, working
in a canning factory, and later in the telephone office. It
was while working there that I saw a poster one morning
that told about a Summer School for Women Workers at
Madison. It reawakened and intensified the longing always

Li RY EY j u iy 15, 192T

present for more and broader knowledge, so I sent in an
application and was accepted.

I expected much, but it was all beyond my expectations. :
I was twenty-six years old, had only an eighth-grade edu-
cation, and having been out of school for more than ten
years I did not think I was going to be able to learn asi
much as I did.

I had been in the world of industry only a few years,
and I found that I had learned very little about the prin-
ciples of social economics, but coming to class with forty-
one girls who had been in industry for several years and
who represented twenty-five different industries to hear
their discussion about present-day social problems gave me
a greater knowledge of the business world than any book
or lecture could give me. I also learned a great deal about
trade unions.

After studying economics I went back to the switch-
board with greater interest.

English was my favorite study. I enjoyed writing themes
and reading, and in those few weeks many rules were made
clear to me and many are still fixed in my mind. The
study of English helped me to express myself better. I
can also choose good books and literature with more ease
and intelligence.

I enjoyed physical education and learned much from the
health talks which were given once a week. I was physically
improved through the corrective exercises, especially my
posture, which seemed to be my greatest defect, perhaps
from sitting or standing in an incorrect position while at
work. Swimming and tennis were great fun and they
taught me good sportsmanship.

Not only were my studies of great value to me, but to
associate with other college girls meant much to me. I
lived in a dormitory and met a great many fine girls, some
of whom became close friends with whom I am still cor-
responding. Not only did I meet interesting and famous
people but I was given a better conception of university life.

I estimate the value of Summer School for Women
Workers very highly, for not only did I learn a great deal
in those six weeks, but I still benefit by it. It helps me to
understand other people better and to appreciate them more.
It taught me how little I really knew and how much I still
have to learn. It gave me the desire to keep on learning.
The influence of those six weeks will extend into years;
years which will bring opportunities for self-improvement,
advancement, and service, which will be made use of because
of the help which I received at the Summer School in
Madison, Wisconsin.


THE FIRST summer school for women workers in industry
to be held under urban conditions on a day school plan opened
at Barnard College, Columbia University, June 27, with 25
students enrolled, for a six weeks course of study that includes
economics, English, and general science. The school program
also offers informal work in music, health and recreation. The
school is self-governing, with instruction on the tutorial plan.
The student group is made up of union and non-union workers,
organizers, officers and business agents in the labor movement.
The membership has been recruited entirely from New York


Opportunity Schools


The third prize story in the recent Harmon-Survey Award in the field of public education


OST academic institutions demand that ap-
plicants for admission possess definite and ex-
act learning. Yet each year in South Caro-
lina recurs seeming midsummer madness when
the depths of one's ignorance constitutes soli-

youth. As the result of such contacts Miss Gray realized
that girls at the formative stage would learn faster, absorb
more of life besides the three Rs, more of home-making,
sanitation, community responsibility, general fineness, in fact,
if they could be removed from their sordid local environ-

tary stimulation for attending two colleges. These Oppor- ment, given intensive instruction in cultural surroundings,

tunity Schools, as they have been christened, are a small
sector of South Carolina's battle to remove from her
aristocratic name the stigma of being the second most
illiterate state in our union. Federal figures show that
South Carolina leads the United States in reducing the per-
centage of adult illiteracy between 1910 and 1920 with a
gain of 7.6, from 25.7 to 18.1.

Last August marked the sixth consecutive summer of in-
tensive college teaching for uneducated girls, the fourth for
the same type of men. Institutions had long offered sum-
mer courses to the educated doctors, teachers, ministers.
South Carolina has thrown wide collegiate doors to illiterates
from farm, cotton mill and home in order that through
study life for them might become richer,
more useful and more satisfying; also
that the state might go forward with
the individual. For can one be a good
citizen in a modern state when the print-
ed page is a sealed mystery? Or care
about progress if a mortifying cross mark
represents one's signature? Opening
these two colleges did more than in-
augurate a new educational experiment;
it began a new era in good citizenship
in South Carolina.

Do these people want to come to
college? So far about nine hundred of
them, the average girl being nineteen
years of age and the man twenty-six,
have devoted one month to mastery of
simple elementary branches. For this
stay, wages sacrificed run to a summer's total of $3,000 for
the girls, $4,000 for the men.

Wil Lou Gray, supervisor of adult schools in South
Carolina's State Department of Education, has travelled
unceasingly up and down the state organizing almost the
famed fifty-seven varieties of adult schools: day schools,
night schools, lay-by schools, when the crops demand no
care and the farmers have leisure to attend, cotton mill
schools in well equipped community buildings, schools by
flickering lantern light while the tobacco cures, schools in
country churches and crossroads stores, every imaginable
sort of school, held at any unholy hour convenient for reach-
ing these ignorant, sensitive Anglo-Saxons past their first

From Tall Tales, by Percy Mackaye
The Century Company

with proper food and sympathetic teachers.

Such a pioneer school was first opened in August, 1921.
For the experiment Tamassee, part of a land grant to Gene-
ral Andrew Pickens for service in the Revolutionary War,
situated among the rolling Blue Ridge foothills and now
the winter school property of the D.A.R., was borrowed.
Here Miss Gray tried out her belief financed almost literally
on a shoestring. One barrel of flour donated by a flour
drummer fired by the adult supervisor's glowing optimism
really formed the school's beginning. But nothing daunts
Wil Lou Gray, not even evolving a full-fledged school from
a flour barrel.

At Tamassee eighteen girls assembled. Mostly they hailed
from cotton mills, picked by discerning
adult teachers there for their qualities
of leadership. Three were farmers'
daughters. All had known the harsh-
ness, the stark, unadorned realities of life.
Among them was a young widow who
seemed so superior to the group that Miss
Gray tactfully inquired whether she was
not a misfit in such an undertaking.
Sadly the widow shook her head

"When I was nine," she replied, "I
went to work in the mill. Till then I
had gone to school off and on, mostly
off. At sixteen I got married. Pretty
soon my husband died and left me with
three teeny children. I had to put 'em
in an orphanage and go back to the mill
to support myself. This June they come
to see me. One day my oldest boy said, 'Mama, don't you
know you oughtn't to talk that-a-way?' It hurt, Miss
Gray, it did. Then and there I made up my mind to talk
right. And when I heard of this school, I says, 'That's the
very place for me.' So here I am. First, I aim to talk proper."
A bright, pretty girl remarked, "Many's the times I've
stood at the mill window looking out at children going
backwards and forwards to school and wished I was one
of them. It seems too good to be true that I'm here." After
working all day in a mill she had at night walked a mile
to take a music lesson. This musical ability as well as her
very definite personality made her a real asset at Tamasee.
A father bringing his two daughters stated that in their


4i 6


July 15, 192 1 }

childhood he was too poor to spare them to go to school.
Later, because of their age, they were ashamed to attend.
Now they were mill-hands to whom Tamassee seemed a
God-given opportunity.

Tamassee's day began at six-thirty. Breakfast was at
eight. From nine to twelve regular classes were held. At
twelve dinner was begun and served at two. Industrial
work and studies in hygiene and citizenship filled the early
afternoon, late afternoon being left for recreation. In four
rotating groups the pupils did the entire household work,
even the washing. By such systematizing each girl received
some training in cooking and table service. This sounds
like a strenuous program. In reality it seemed play to girls
accustomed to laboring long hours in mill and field.

MEAL times were Tamassee's open forum. The girls, as
well as the widow, aspired to speak correctly ; to them
it was the mark of a "lady." Often one would ask, "How
do you say this? Or that?" Correct table manners were
another ambition. "Tell us when we eat wrong," they

Gains in health and habits of personal cleanliness were
beyond argument. Many had never before seen running
water or been in a bathtub. Tamassee gave most of them
their first lessons in toothbrushing and sewing. But what
did these eighteen girls get in books? After four weeks,
those illiterate on entering were able to read simple text
and to write legible letters ; the more advanced had gone
forward splendidly. New alertness could be discerned in
the girls' faces. All had developed their reasoning power
and had learned to think in terms of the group as well as
the individual.

It had been intended to charge a small amount for board
but it was speedily found that the type of pupil wanted
could make no money payment, though with characteristic
independence those from the country brought potatoes,
beans, corn, eggs. Free board was made possible through
interested friends, the Illiteracy Commissions, donations from
near-by towns and last, but by no means least, the inspira-
tional barrel of flour. The state's teaching cost amounted

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