As an early group of 19th century Boston investors became even richer with less effort, via textile production, and as society became more alienated, they turned from charity to philanthropy to protect their power (and to have something to do). [Continued from part I.]
In the 1810s, a close-knit group of rich investors based in Boston decided to adopt and adapt emerging industrial capitalism, via the textile industry, in a way that would preserve and grow their existing wealth and power. The Waltham-Lowell System was born.
To prepare for a series on early industrial Massachusetts we’re unlocking this episode from Patreon: Bill and Rachel examine what an 1842 Massachusetts court decision can tell us about the process of industrialization and the emergence of labor unions and what parallels we can draw for modern gig workers.
In 1887, the Knights of Labor organized a huge strike by Black sugarcane workers in Louisiana, which was suppressed with massive lethal force. (Content warning.) New Orleans-based guest Justin LaGrande returns to discuss the circumstances and recent efforts to bring it to greater light.