A century ago, the labor union was much more pervasive

This article first appeared in the Broomfield Enterprise.

A century ago, the labor union was much more pervasive in American society than it is today. Not surprisingly, Labor Day was a very popular holiday, celebrated with big events in just about every town in the Front Range.

Denver traditionally hosted a big Labor Day parade. In 1903, the parade featured 7,000 union members, all dressed in uniforms made specifically for the event. The frontier Denver department store, Daniels & Fisher (precursor to May D&F) awarded a banner to the best looking group of marchers, in this case the Painters and Decorators union. Second prize went to the Plasterers’ union. Continue reading

Smelter Town of Globeville, Colorado had rowdy history

This article first appeared in the  Broomfield Enterprise.

One largely forgotten name from the early days of the Denver-Boulder area is the town of Globeville. Today a Denver neighborhood located just north of the tangled intersection of I-70 and I-25 (the “mousetrap”), Globeville was once a thriving town in its own right — with a very rowdy history. Continue reading

Labor grievances and strikes marred Colorado’s coal mining industry

This article first appeared in the Broomfield Enterprise.

During the 19th and 20th centuries, the Colorado Front Range coal industry was booming. Between the Northern Coal Field (200 coal mines between Marshall and Frederick) and the Southern Coal Field (between Trinidad and Walsenberg), Colorado also saw its share of labor unrest. Continue reading