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Buildup to a Strike on Neville Island

The Industrial Union of Marine and Shipbuilding Workers of America (I.U.M.S.W.A.) was another of the important C.I.O. Unions formed in the 1930's. An organizing campaign at the Dravo Corporation's Neville Island Boat Building Works, during World War II, as the Yards were turning out LST's for the U.S. Navy, resulted in an election in September 1943 which brought into being I.U.M.S.W.A. Local 61. These union dues cards date from the period 1943-45 and also reflect the significant participation of women, albeit in these cases only temporarily, in war production.

The first contract between Dravo and Local 61 was entered into on September 18, 1943. Several additional contracts and supplements ensued. Prior to the expiration of the 1947/48 contract, the union exercised its option to seek the termination of the contract unless negotiations with the company could be secured and satisfactory changes obtained. As the Affidavit of the union's International Representative Charles T. Gilman and the other documents indicate, the company and the union could not reach agreement.

Minutes of Negotiations between Shipbuilders Local 61 and Dravo:

7-12-49 (1)
7-13-49 (2)
7-21-49 (2)

Statement of Charles T. Gilman, union representative, page one, page two.

United Railroad Workers of America Statement of Activities page one, page two.