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Finding Aid to the 1934 International Longshoremen's Association and General Strikes of San Francisco 1933-1934
BANC PIC 1959.003--PIC  
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Collection Summary
  • Information for Researchers
  • Acquisition Information
  • Historical Background
  • Chronology Of Events in the Strike Of 1934
  • Scope and Content
  • Note on Arrangement of Additions

  • Collection Summary

    Collection Title: 1934 International Longshoremen's Association and general strikes of San Francisco
    Date: 1933-1934
    Date (bulk): 1934
    Collection Number: BANC PIC 1959.003--PIC
    Collector: San Francisco Call Bulletin (Firm)
    Extent: 544 film negatives, 247 4x5 inch black and white copy photographs, and 297 8x10 inch black and white copy photographs. 253 digital objects
    Repository: The Bancroft Library
    University of California, Berkeley
    Berkeley, CA 94720-6000
    Phone: (510) 642-6481
    Fax: (510) 642-7589
    Email: bancref@library.berkeley.edu
    Languages Represented: Collection materials are in English

    Information for Researchers


    Collection is open for use.

    Publication Rights

    Materials in this collection may be protected by the U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.). In addition, the reproduction of some materials may be restricted by terms of University of California gift or purchase agreements, donor restrictions, privacy and publicity rights, licensing and trademarks. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by copyright beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owner. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.All requests to reproduce, publish, quote from, or otherwise use collection materials must be submitted in writing to the Head of Public Services, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley 94720-6000. See: http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/reference/permissions.html.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], 1934 International Longshoremen's Association and general strikes of San Francisco, BANC PIC 1959.003--PIC, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.

    Digital Representations Available

    Digital representations of selected original pictorial materials are available in the list of materials below. Digital image files were prepared from selected Library originals by the Library Photographic Service. Library originals were copied onto 35mm color transparency film; the film was scanned and transferred to Kodak Photo CD (by Custom Process); and the Photo CD files were color-corrected and saved in JFIF (JPEG) format for use as viewing files.
    Selected items were digitized or re-digitized at a later date.

    Acquisition Information

    Originally received with the San Francisco News-Call Bulletin newspaper photograph archive (BANC PIC 1959.010)

    Historical Background

    The General Strike of San Francisco occurred July 16-19, 1934 as an outgrowth of the International Longshoremen's Association strike. The ILA strike for control of hiring halls and better pay and hours had closed most Pacific ports except Los Angeles. The attempt of San Francisco employers to open local docks led to a battle between strikers and police on "Bloody Thursday" (July 5), which left two dead and many injured. Harry Bridges, head of the city's division of the ILA, got the general support of other unions, although electricity and food remained available. The four-day strike ended with agreement on arbitration in which the ILA got most of the demands it had made on behalf of longshoremen.
    Hart, James D. A Companion to California. New York: Oxford University Press, 1978. p. 155.

    Chronology Of Events in the Strike Of 1934

    March 7 Strike vote taken by Pacific Coast District, International Longshoremen's Association
    March 26 President's Fact Finding commission appointed
    April 3 Proposals offered by Waterfront Employers' Union accepted by Pacific Coast District Council, International Longshoremen's Association
    May 9 Beginning of strike
    May 28 Agreement negotiated between representatives of Waterfront Employers' Union and International Longshoremen's Association
    June 7 San Francisco Local International Brotherhood of Teamsters refused to handle freight loaded by strikebreakers
    June 16 Agreement negotiated between representatives of Waterfront Employers' Union and International Longshoremen's Association
    June 26 National Longshoremen's Board appointed
    July 3 Industrial Association of San Francisco starts movement of freight from waterfront
    July 5 Two strikers killed, National Guard ordered to San Francisco waterfront
    July 11 San Francisco Local, International Brotherhood of Teamsters calls strike
    July 16 General strike begins
    July 19 General strike ends
    July 21 Teamsters return to work
    July 31 Longshore strike ends
    Eliel, Paul. The Waterfront and General Strikes, San Francisco, 1934; a Brief History. San Francisco: Hooper Printing Co., 1934. p. 245.

    Scope and Content

    This collection consists of 544 modern prints made from original negatives held by The Bancroft Library. The negatives are part of the photograph archive of the San Francisco News-Call Bulletin newspaper photograph archive (BANC PIC 1959.010) and were taken by staff photographers of the newspaper. For many years, this collection consisted of only the first 247 items listed in this finding aid. In 1998, an additional 297 original negatives were discovered in the files of the San Francisco News-Call Bulletin newspaper photograph archive and were printed and added as items 248-544. The initial 247 prints are grouped under the following topics: Produce Market, Food Convoy; Food Lines, Food Raids; Longshoremen and Pickets; Embarcadero Scenes; Police Scenes, Arrests; Funerals; Miscellaneous; and Portraits, Court Room Scenes. The additions have been arranged under: Longshoremen Loading and Unloading Ships; Goods (Rationing and Deliveries); Police Rounding Up Longshoremen Pickets; Vandalism; Police Confrontations; Sidewalk Memorial; Longshoremen in Court; Protests and Pickets; Miscellaneous Police Scenes; National Guard; Memorial Ceremonies and Funerals; Raids and Arrests of Communists; Street & Public Scenes (during transit strike and return to sevice?); News Photographers Posing. Most of the photographs lack exact dates, but all date from the period up to and including the General Strike, including scenes of "Bloody Thursday." A number of the photographs are of central figures associated with the strikes, including Harry Bridges, Edward Joseph Hanna, Thomas G. Plant, and Angelo Joseph Rossi.

    Note on Arrangement of Additions

    Negatives now numbered 248-544 were originally grouped into four batches.
    • Batch 1: Cops [police], Riots (95 negs)
    • Batch 2: Communists, Reporters, Street Cars, Funeral (22 negs)
    • Batch 3: Communists (40 negs)
    • Batch 3a: Reporters, Funeral (11 negs)
    • Batch 4: Army (National Guard) (124 negs)
    Each batch was found housed in a small photographic dry plate box with a brief annotation (as transcribed above) on the exterior, or wrapped with a craft paper strip with an annotation. No other identification was present with negatives. Batches contained film negatives that seemed to be in no particular order, and related images were found in different batches. Therefore they were re-ordered roughly around the chronological history of the strike into groups, as well as could be determined by library staff, and the current arrangement is approximate and identification is tentative. The original batch numbers are written on the top edge of the back of the photographic prints ("Batch 1", for example) so that, if errors in arrangement were made, researchers can tell which images were originally stored in proximity to each other and thereby make more informed identifications of subject.