Is class outmoded as a basis for understanding labor history? This significant new collection emphatically says "No!" Touching on such subjects as migrant labor, religion, ethnicity, agricultural history, and gender, these thirteen essays by former students of David Montgomery--a preeminent leader in labor circles as well as in academia--demonstrate the sheer diversity of the field today.
"During the nineteenth century, American and foreign travelers often found New Orleans a delightful, exotic stop on their journeys; few failed to marvel at the riverfront, the center of the city's economic activity. . . . But absent from the tourism industry's historical recollection is any reference to the immigrants or black migrants and their children who constituted the army of laborers along the riverfront and provided the essential human power to keep the cotton, sugar, and other goods flowing. . . . In examining one diverse group of workers--the 10,000 to 15,000 cotton screwmen, longshoremen, cotton and round freight teamsters, cotton yardmen, railroad freight handlers, and Mississippi River roustabouts--this book focuses primarily on the workplace and the labor movement that emerged along the waterfront."--From the preface