Bread and Roses: Mills, Migrants, and the Struggle for the American Dream

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Viking, 2005 - Business & Economics - 337 pages
2 Reviews
The 1912 textile strike in Lawrence, Massachusetts was a watershed moment in labor history as significant as the Haymarket bombing in Chicago and the Triangle fire in New York. In Bread and Roses, veteran journalist Bruce Watson provides a long-overdue account of the strike that began when textile workers stormed out of the mills in Lawrence on a frigid January day. Despite owners¬' predictions to the contrary, the walkout soon became a protracted Dickensian drama that included twenty-three thousand strikers from fifty-one nations singing as they paraded through Lawrence, bayonet-toting militiamen patrolling the streets, and the daring evacuation of the strikers¬' tattered and hungry children to Manhattan, where they lived with strangers and wrote loving letters to their parents on the picket line.

Based on newspaper accounts, magazine reportage, and oral histories, Bread and Roses is vividly narrated and teeming with colorful characters¬—including rags-to-riches mill owner William Wood and radical labor leader ¬“Big Bill¬” Haywood. A rousing history with the narrative drive of a novel, Bread and Roses is the true-to-life tale of a strike that became the fabric of a community and an inspiration to workers around the world.

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BREAD & ROSES: Mills, Migrants, and the Struggle for the American Dream

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

A vivid work of labor history, recounting a famed textile workers' strike of 1912.Lawrence, Mass., was a major center of textile manufacture in the early 1900s, and most of the work was done by ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - daschaich - LibraryThing

An engaging history of a seminal struggle: Bruce Watson's "Bread and Roses" tells the captivating story of the 1912 textile strike in the mill town of Lawrence, Massachusetts. Now known as the "bread ... Read full review


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About the author (2005)

Bruce Watson is an award-winning journalist whose articles have been published in Smithsonian, Los Angeles Times, Boston Globe, San Francisco Examiner, Yankee Magazine, and The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2003.

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