The Rise of Planning in Industrial America, 1865-1914 (Routledge Explorations in Economic History)

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The Rise of Planning in Industrial America, 1865-1914

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Towards a Common Definition of Global Health. The Foundations of Modern Political Thought. Volume I: The Renaissance. Piety and Charity in Late Medieval Florence. What Is Cosmopolitan? National Center for Biotechnology Information , U. Bulletin of the History of Medicine. The Johns Hopkins University Press. Bull Hist Med. Copyright and License information Disclaimer. Copyright This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. Summary The emergence of global history has been one of the more notable features of academic history over the past three decades. Keywords: globalization, imperialism, modernity, global health. Globalization and Global History While global history began as a response to globalization, it is no longer defined by it. Disease Pathogens know no borders and lend themselves to histories that are global or transregional in scope, Alfred W.

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Wells, D. The Russo-Japanese War in cultural perspective, Werth, Paul W. Werth, P. Wilbur, Elvira M. Wildman, A. The end of the Russian Imperial Army. The nonunion industrial relations system of the s might have endured and produced a docile working class organized in company unions Brody, But the welfare capitalism of the s collapsed when the Great Depression of the s exposed its weaknesses and undermined political support for the nonunion, open shop.

Between and , real national income in the United States fell by one third, nonagricultural employment fell by a quarter, and unemployment rose from under 2 million in to 13 million in , a quarter of the civilian labor force. Economic decline was nearly as great elsewhere, raising unemployment to over 15 percent in Austria, Canada, Germany, and the United Kingdom Maddison, Only the Soviet Union, with its authoritarian political economy was largely spared the scourge of unemployment and economic collapse — a point emphasized by Communists throughout the s and later.

Depression discredited the nonunion industrial relations system by forcing welfare capitalists to renege on promises to stabilize employment and to maintain wages. Then, by ignoring protests from members of employee representation plans, welfare capitalists further exposed the fundamental weakness of their system. Lacking any independent support, paternalist promises had no standing but depended entirely on the variable good will of employers.

And sometimes that was not enough Cohen, Voters, too, lost confidence in employers. The Great Depression discredited the old political economy. European voters abandoned centrist parties, embracing extremists of both left and right, Communists and Fascists. In Germany, the Nazis won, but Popular Front governments uniting Communists and socialists with bourgeois liberals assumed power in other countries, including Sweden, France and Spain.

The Spanish Popular Front was overthrown by a Fascist rebellion that installed a dictatorship led by Francisco Franco. Throughout there was an impulse to take public control over the economy because free market capitalism and orthodox finance had led to disaster Temin, Economic depression lowers union membership when unemployed workers drop their membership and employers use their stronger bargaining position to defeat union drives Bain and Elsheikh, Indeed, union membership fell with the onset of the Great Depression but, contradicting the usual pattern, membership rebounded sharply after despite high unemployment, rising by over 76 percent in ten countries by see Table 6 and Table 1.

The fastest growth came in countries with openly pro-union governments. But membership grew by 33 percent in eight other countries even without openly pro-labor governments. French union membership rose from under , in to over 4,, in Codified in statute by the Popular Front government, French unions gained new rights and protections from employer repression. Only then did workers flock into unions. In a few weeks, French unions gained four million members with the fastest growth in the new industries of the second industrial revolution.

Unions in metal fabrication and chemicals grew by 1, percent and 4, percent respectively Magraw, 2, Regrouping, employers discharged union activists and attacked the precarious unity of the Popular Front government. Fighting an uphill battle against renewed employer resistance, the Popular Front government fell before it could build a new system of cooperative industrial relations. Contained, French unions were unable to maintain their momentum towards industrial democracy.

Membership fell by a third in A different union paradigm was developed in the United States. Rather than vehicles for a democratic revolution, the New Deal sought to integrate organized labor into a reformed capitalism that recognized capitalist hierarchy in the workplace, using unions only to promote macroeconomic stabilization by raising wages and consumer spending Brinkley, As with the KOL, the greatest increase came among the unskilled.

Coal miners, southern textile workers, northern apparel workers, Ohio tire makers, Detroit automobile workers, aluminum, lumber and sawmill workers all rushed into unions. For the first time in fifty years, American unions gained a foothold in mass production industries. Promises of state support brought common laborers into unions. But once there, the new unionists received little help from aging AFL leaders. Doing little to enforce the promises of Section 7 a , the Federal government left employers free to ignore the law.

Some flatly prohibited union organization; others formally honored the law but established anemic employee representation plans while refusing to deal with independent unions Irons, By almost as many industrial establishments had employer-dominated employee- representation plans 27 percent as had unions 30 percent. The greatest number had no labor organization at all 43 percent. Implacable management resistance and divided leadership killed the early New Deal union surge. It died even before the NIRA was ruled unconstitutional in Failure provoked rebellion within the AFL.

Led by John L. Lewis of the United Mine Workers, eight national unions launched a campaign for industrial organization as the Committee for Industrial Organization. Including many Communist activists, CIO committees fanned out to organize workers in steel, automobiles, retail trade, journalism and other industries.

Building effectively on local rank and file militancy, including sitdown strikes in automobiles, rubber, and other industries, the CIO quickly won contracts from some of the strongest bastions of the open shop, including United States Steel and General Motors Zieger, Creative strategy and energetic organizing helped. But the CIO owed its lasting success to state support. Shifting labor conflict from strikes to elections and protecting activists from dismissal for their union work, the Act lowered the cost to individual workers of supporting collective action.

By the Board had supervised 24, union elections involving some 6,, workers, leading to the unionization of nearly 5,, workers. Jones and Laughlin Steel Company More important than the Wagner Act were crucial union victories over prominent open shop employers in cities like Akron, Ohio, Flint, Michigan, and among Philadelphia-area metal workers. Dedicated rank-and-file militants and effective union leadership were crucial in these victories. As important was the support of pro-New Deal local and state governments. The Roosevelt landslides of and brought to office liberal Democratic governors and mayors who gave crucial support to the early CIO.

Placing a right to collective bargaining above private property rights, liberal governors and other elected officials in Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and elsewhere refused to send police to evict sit-down strikers who had seized control of factories. This state support allowed the minority of workers who actively supported unionization to use force to overcome the passivity of the majority of workers and the opposition of the employers. The Open Shop of the s was not abandoned; it was overwhelmed by an aggressive, government-backed labor movement Gall, ; Harris, Federal support for union organization was also crucial during World War II.

Again, war helped unions both by eliminating unemployment and because state officials supported unions to gain support for the war effort. Established to minimize labor disputes that might disrupt war production, the National War Labor Board instituted a labor truce where unions exchanged a no-strike pledge for employer recognition. Acquiescing to government demands, employers accepted the institutionalization of the American labor movement, guaranteeing unions a steady flow of dues to fund an expanded bureaucracy, new benefit programs, and even to raise funds for political action.

After growing from 3. With millions of members and money in the bank, labor leaders like Sidney Hillman and Phillip Murray had the ear of business leaders and official Washington. Large, established, and respected: American labor had made it, part of a reformed capitalism committed to both property and prosperity. A European civil war, the war divided the continent not only between warring countries but within countries between those, usually on the political right, who favored fascism over liberal parliamentary government and those who defended democracy.

Before the war, left and right contended over the appeasement of Nazi Germany and fascist Italy; during the war, many businesses and conservative politicians collaborated with the German occupation against a resistance movement dominated by the left. Throughout Europe, victory over Germany was a triumph for labor that led directly to the entry into government of socialists and Communists. Union membership exploded during and after the war, nearly doubling between and By , unions had enrolled a majority of nonagricultural workers in Scandinavia, Australia, and Italy, and over 40 percent in most other European countries see Table 1.

Accumulated depression and wartime grievances sparked a post- war strike wave that included over 6 million strikers in France in , 4 million in Italy in and , and 5 million in the United States in In Europe, popular unrest led to a dramatic political shift to the left. The Labor Party government elected in the United Kingdom in established a new National Health Service, and nationalized mining, the railroads, and the Bank of England. A center-left post-war coalition government in France expanded the national pension system and nationalized the Bank of France, Renault, and other companies associated with the wartime Vichy regime.

Throughout Europe, the share of national income devoted to social services jumped dramatically, as did the share of income going to the working classes. In these countries, union membership dropped after and unions remained on the defensive for over a decade in a largely adversarial industrial relations system. Elsewhere, notably in countries with weak Communist movements, such as in Scandinavia but also in Austria, Germany, and the Netherlands, labor was able to compel management and state officials to accept strong and centralized labor movements as social partners.

In these countries, stable industrial relations allowed cooperation between management and labor to raise productivity and to open new markets for national companies. High-union-density and high-union-centralization allowed Scandinavian and German labor leaders to negotiate incomes policies with governments and employers restraining wage inflation in exchange for stable employment, investment, and wages linked to productivity growth.

Such policies could not be instituted in countries with weaker and less centralized labor movements, including France, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States because their unions had not been accepted as bargaining partners by management and they lacked the centralized authority to enforce incomes policies and productivity bargains Alvarez, Garrett, and Lange, Working with entrenched socialist and labor political parties, European unions were able to maintain high wages, restrictions on managerial autonomy, and social security.

The wave of popular unrest in the late s and early s would carry most European unions to new heights, briefly bringing membership to over 50 percent of the labor force in the United Kingdom and in Italy, and bringing socialists into the government in France, Germany, Italy, and the United Kingdom.

Since , union membership has declined some and there has been some retrenchment in the welfare state. But the essentials of European welfare states and labor relations have remained Western, ; Golden and Pontusson, It was after World War II that American Exceptionalism became most valid, when the United States emerged as the advanced, capitalist democracy with the weakest labor movement. The United States was the only advanced capitalist democracy where unions went into prolonged decline right after World War II. At 35 percent, the unionization rate in was the highest in American history, but even then it was lower than in most other advanced capitalist economies.

It has been falling since. Instead, it provoked a powerful reaction among employers and others suspicious of growing union power. Then, in , a conservative Republican majority was elected to Congress, dashing hopes for a renewed, post-war New Deal. The Republican Congress amended the Wagner Act, enacting the Taft-Hartley Act in to give employers and state officials new powers against strikers and unions. The law also required union leaders to sign a non-Communist affidavit as a condition for union participation in NLRB-sponsored elections.

This loyalty oath divided labor during a time of weakness. With its roots in radical politics and an alliance of convenience between Lewis and the Communists, the CIO was torn by the new Red Scare. Shorn of its left, the CIO lost its most dynamic and energetic organizers and leaders. Little reason remained for the CIO to remain independent. Some labor leaders, notably James Hoffa of the Teamsters but also local leaders in construction and service trades, abandoned all higher aspirations to use their unions for purely personal financial gain.

Allying themselves with organized crime, they used violence to maintain their power over employers and their own rank-and-file membership. Others, including former-CIO leaders, like Walter Reuther of the United Auto Workers, continued to push the envelope of legitimate bargaining topics, building challenges to capitalist authority at the workplace. But even the UAW was unable to force major managerial prerogatives onto the bargaining table.

Contracts were periodically negotiated providing for the exchange of good wages for cooperative workplace relations. Rules were negotiated providing a system of civil authority at work, with negotiated regulations for promotion and layoffs, and procedures giving workers opportunities to voice grievances before neutral arbitrators. Wages rose steadily, by over 2 percent per year and union workers earned a comfortable 20 percent more than nonunion workers of similar age, experience and education.

Wages grew faster in Europe but American wages were higher and growth was rapid enough to narrow the gap between rich and poor, and between management salaries and worker wages. Unions also won a growing list of benefit programs, medical and dental insurance, paid holidays and vacations, supplemental unemployment insurance, and pensions. Competition for workers forced many nonunion employers to match the benefit packages won by unions, but unionized employers provided benefits worth over 60 percent more than were given nonunion workers Freeman and Medoff, ; Hirsch and Addison, In most of Europe, strong labor movements limit the wage and benefit advantages of union membership by forcing governments to extend union gains to all workers in an industry regardless of union status.

By compelling nonunion employers to match union gains, this limited the competitive penalty borne by unionized firms. By contrast, decentralized bargaining and weak unions in the United States created large union wage differentials that put unionized firms at a competitive disadvantage, encouraging them to seek out nonunion labor and localities. Others, however, find little productivity gain for unionized workers after account is taken of greater use of machinery and other nonlabor inputs by unionized firms compare Freeman and Medoff, and Hirsch and Addison, Post-war unions remained politically active.

European unions were closely associated with political parties, Communists in France and Italy, socialists or labor parties elsewhere. Golden age unions have also been at the forefront of campaigns to extend individual rights. The major domestic political issue of the post-war United States, civil rights, was troubling for many unions because of the racist provisions in their own practice. Nonetheless, in the s and s, the AFL-CIO strongly supported the civil rights movement, funded civil rights organizations and lobbied in support of civil rights legislation.

Seizing the opportunity created by the civil rights movement, some unions gained members among nonwhites. The feminist movement of the s created new challenges for the masculine and sometimes misogynist labor movement. But, here too, the search for members and a desire to remove sources of division eventually brought organized labor to the forefront. In no other country have women and members of racial minorities assumed such prominent positions in the labor movement as they have in the United States.

The movement of African-American and women to leadership positions in the late-twentieth century labor movement was accelerated by a shift in the membership structure of the United States union movement. Maintaining their strength in traditional, masculine occupations in manufacturing, construction, mining, and transportation, European unions remained predominantly male. Union decline in these industries combined with growth in heavily female public sector employments in the United States led to the femininization of the American labor movement. Between and , for example, the unionization rate fell from 42 percent to 28 percent in manufacturing, by nearly half in transportation, and by over half in construction and mining see Table 4.

By contrast, after , public sector workers won new opportunities to form unions. Women comprised only 19 percent of American union members in the mids but their share rose to 40 percent by the late s. By then, the most unionized workers were no longer the white male skilled craftsmen of old. Instead, they were nurses, parole officers, government clerks, and most of all, school teachers. Outside the United States, unions grew through the s and, despite some decline since the s, European and Canadian unions remain large and powerful.

The United States is different. Union decline since World War II has brought the United States private-sector labor movement down to early twentieth century levels. As a share of the nonagricultural labor force, union membership fell from its peak of 35 percent down to under 30 percent in the early s. From there, decline became a general rout. In the s, rising unemployment, increasing international competition, and the movement of industry to the nonunion South and to rural areas undermined the bargaining position of many American unions leaving them vulnerable to a renewed management offensive.

Returning to pre-New Deal practices, some employers established new welfare and employee representation programs, hoping to lure worker away from unions Heckscher, ; Jacoby, Others returned to pre-New Deal repression. By the early s, union avoidance had become an industry. Anti-union consultants and lawyers openly counseled employers how to use labor law to evade unions.

By the s, the unionization rate in the United States fell to under 14 percent, including only 9 percent of the private sector workers and 37 percent of those in the public sector. Unions now have minimal impact on wages or working conditions for most American workers. Nowhere else have unions collapsed as in the United States. With a unionization rate dramatically below that of other countries, including Canada, the United States has achieved exceptional status see Table 7.

There remains great interest in unions among American workers; where employers do not resist, unions thrive. In the public sector and in some private employers where workers have free choice to join a union, they are as likely as they ever were, and as likely as workers anywhere. In the past, as after and in the s, when American employers broke unions, they revived when a government committed to workplace democracy sheltered them from employer repression.

If we see another such government, we may yet see another union revival. Note: The unionization rate reported is the number of union members out of workers in the specified industry. The ratio shown is the unionization rate for the United States divided by the unionization rate for the other countries. Data on union membership in financial services in France are not available. Alvarez, R. Michael, Geoffrey Garrett and Peter Lange. Ansell, Christopher K. Bain, George S. Oxford: Basil Blackwell, Bernard, Phillippe and Henri Dubief. The Decline of the Third Republic, Blewett, Mary H. Boyle, Kevin, editor.

Brinkley, Alan. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, Brody, David. New York: Oxford University Press, Paris: Maspero, Cohen, Lizabeth. Cronin, James E. Cronin and Carmen Sirianni. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, Dawley, Alan. Ely, James W. New York: Oxford, Fink, Leon. Foner, Philip S. Organized Labor and the Black Worker, New York: International Publishers, New York: Free Press, Frank, Dana.

Friedman, Gerald. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, Gall, Gilbert. Geary, Richard. European Labour Protest, New York: St. Golden, Miriam and Jonas Pontusson, editors. Griffith, Barbara S. Harris, Howell John. Hattam, Victoria C. Princeton: Princeton University Press, Heckscher, Charles C. New York: Basic Books, Hirsch, Barry T. Boston: Allen and Unwin, Hirschman, Albert O. Hobsbawm, Eric J.


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  8. Labouring Men: Studies in the History of Labour. London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, Irons, Janet. Jacoby, Sanford. Katznelson, Ira and Aristide R. Zolberg, editors. Kocka, Jurgen. Zolberg, Letwin, Daniel. Maddison, Angus. Oxford: Oxford University Press, Magraw, Roger. A History of the French Working Class , two volumes. London: Blackwell, Milkman, Ruth. Boston: Routledge and Kegan Paul, Montgomery, David.

    Mullin, Debbie Dudley. Nolan, Mary. Olson, Mancur. Rachleff, Peter J. Black Labor in the South, Roediger, David. London: Verso, Scott, Joan. Sewell, William H. Shorter, Edward and Charles Tilly. Strikes in France, Troy, Leo. Distribution of Union Membership among the States, and United States, Bureau of the Census. Census of Occupations, Voss, Kim.

    Ware, Norman. New York: Vintage, Washington, Booker T. Weiler, Paul. Western, Bruce. Whatley, Warren. Wilentz, Robert Sean. Wolman, Leo. Ebb and Flow in Trade Unionism. Zieger, Robert. The CIO, Zolberg, Aristide. In the s, many Americans worked seventy hours or more per week and the length of the workweek became an important political issue. This article presents estimates of the length of the historical workweek in the U. Measuring the length of the workweek or workday or workyear is a difficult task, full of ambiguities concerning what constitutes work and who is to be considered a worker.

    Estimating the length of the historical workweek is even more troublesome. Before the Civil War most Americans were employed in agriculture and most of these were self-employed. Like self-employed workers in other fields, they saw no reason to record the amount of time they spent working.

    Often the distinction between work time and leisure time was blurry. Therefore, estimates of the length of the typical workweek before the mids are very imprecise. This workday was considerably longer than for English laborers, who at the time probably averaged closer to six hours of heavy labor each day. Others are skeptical of such claims and argue that work hours increased during the nineteenth century — especially its first half.

    Fogel and Engerman argue that agricultural hours in the North increased before the Civil War due to the shift into time-intensive dairy and livestock. Weiss and Craig find evidence suggesting that agricultural workers also increased their hours of work between and On the other hand, it is clear that working hours declined substantially for one important group.

    Ransom and Sutch and Ng and Virts estimate that annual labor hours per capita fell 26 to 35 percent among African-Americans with the end of slavery. Our most reliable estimates of the workweek come from manufacturing, since most employers required that manufacturing workers remain at work during precisely specified hours. The Census of Manufactures began to collect this information in but earlier estimates are available. Much of what is known about average work hours in the nineteenth century comes from two surveys of manufacturing hours taken by the federal government. The first survey, known as the Weeks Report, was prepared by Joseph Weeks as part of the Census of The second was prepared in by Commissioner of Labor Carroll D.

    It is commonly called the Aldrich Report. Both of these sources, however, have been criticized as flawed due to problems such as sample selection bias firms whose records survived may not have been typical and unrepresentative regional and industrial coverage. In addition, the two series differ in their estimates of the average length of the workweek by as much as four hours.

    These estimates are reported in Table 1. Despite the previously mentioned problems, it seems reasonable to accept two important conclusions based on these data — the length of the typical manufacturing workweek in the s was very long by modern standards and it declined significantly between and Sources: U. Department of Interior , U. Senate Note: Atack and Bateman , using data from census manuscripts, estimate average weekly hours to be They also find that the summer workweek was about 1.

    Because of changing definitions and data sources there does not exist a consistent series of workweek estimates covering the entire twentieth century. Table 2 presents six sets of estimates of weekly hours. Despite differences among the series, there is a fairly consistent pattern, with weekly hours falling considerably during the first third of the century and much more slowly thereafter.

    In particular, hours fell strongly during the years surrounding World War I, so that by the eight-hour day with six workdays per week had been won. Hours fell sharply at the beginning of the Great Depression, especially in manufacturing, then rebounded somewhat and peaked during World War II. After World War II, the length of the workweek stabilized around forty hours. The last column is based on information reported by individuals in the decennial censuses and in the Current Population Survey of It may be the most accurate and representative series, as it is based entirely on the responses of individuals rather than employers.

    The figures in parentheses in the first column are unofficial estimates but are probably more precise, as they better estimate the hours of workers in industries with very long workweeks. Table 3 compares the length of the workweek in manufacturing to that in other industries for which there is available information.

    Unfortunately, data from the agricultural and service sectors are unavailable until late in this period. The figures in Table 3 show that the length of the workweek was generally shorter in the other industries — sometimes considerably shorter. All of the series show an overall downward trend. Sources: Douglas , Jones , Licht , and Tables 1 and 2.

    Note: The manufacturing figures for the s and s are approximations based on averaging numbers from the Weeks and Aldrich reports from Table 1. The early estimates for the railroad industry are also approximations. Some analysts, such as Schor have argued that the workweek increased substantially in the last half of the twentieth century. For all four groups the average length of the workweek has dropped since Although median weekly hours were virtually constant for men, the upper tail of the hours distribution fell for those with little schooling and rose for the well-educated.

    In addition, Coleman and Pencavel also find that work hours declined for young and older men especially black men , but changed little for white men in their prime working years. Women with relatively little schooling were working fewer hours in the s than in , while the reverse is true of well-educated women. In a typical male household head had very little leisure time — only about 1.

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