Logan (1887) A City’s Danger and Defense – Scranton General Strike and the City Guard


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Logan, Samuel C.  A City’s Danger and Defense, or Issues and Results of the Strikes of 1877 containing the Origin and History of the Scranton City Guard. (Scranton, 1887) Quite scarce with only 3 in OCLC.

Octavo. viii, 355 pages with 11 half-tone illustrations. Hardcover. Bound in maroon cloth-covered boards stamped on spine and front board in gilt.  Decorated end papers.

Condition: Very Good. Minor scuffing to the boards, uneven darkening to rear board. Hinges solid and uncracked. Scattered foxing. Overall, a very nice copy.

Provenance: Purchased from the estate of Federal Judge James Focht McClure Jr. (April 6, 1931 – December 17, 2010) who was a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania.

The Scranton general strike was a widespread work stoppage in 1877 by workers in Scranton, Pennsylvania, which took place as part of the Great Railroad Strike, and was the last in a number of violent outbreaks across Pennsylvania. The strike began on July 23 when railroad workers walked off the job in protest of recent wage cuts, and within three days it grew to include perhaps thousands of workers from a variety of industries.

Many had returned to work when violence erupted on August 1 after a mob attacked the town’s mayor, and then clashed with local militia, leaving four dead and many more wounded. State and federal troops were called to the town, and imposed martial law. Minor acts of violence continued until the last of the strikers returned to work on October 17, having won no concessions. More than a score of those involved in the shooting were arrested for murder, and later tried and found not-guilty of the crime of manslaughter. Two were tried and one convicted in libel suits related to published criticism of the militia. The militia would go on to be reformed into a battalion of the Pennsylvania National Guard.