First strike in Bisbee – newsboys!

While the Bisbee Daily Review, under any ownership, was loath to say anything good about strikes or unions, there was one time it did so gleefully – when the paper carriers for the archrival Bisbee Evening Miner went out on strike.

Miner newsboys on strikeThe Review reported Sept. 18, 1902 that “the first strike in the history of Bisbee is on. The smelter and mine continue to operate as usual. The stores are not closed and trains continue to run, but the delivery system of the Miner is sadly crippled.”

We can rest assured that the use of “sadly” was tongue in cheek.

“The Amalgamatedd Association of the Indepenent Order of Newspaper Carriers has walked out. Notice was served on the Miner management last evening and if you don’t get the Miner, you may know that the tie up is complete.”

The first issue was wages. The Miner paid $8 per month, while the Review paid $10, “but the Miner management claimed the Review carriers had to deliver more papers.”

Another issue, about which the Review was joyful, was that “the carriers object to bearing the burden of complaints made by subscribers along the routes owing to a dearth of news in the evening paper.”

Said the spokesman for the union of 9- to 16-year-olds: “We don’t work no more for the Miner until we get our rights. We don’t want to suppress the freedom of the press, and are willing to submit to arbitration, but the strike is on.”

In the next few days, I found no further references to this strike. Was it real? We’ll have to assume the paper printed the truth, at least their version of it.


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