Steel mill worker fighting to cross a picket line outside the Cambria Steel Mill, Johnstown, Pa. June 14, 1937.
Close Window

A mill worker, in a black suit, is shown fighting with pickets who seek to prevent his entering the Cambria plant of the Bethlehem Steel Company at Johnstown, Pennsylvania.

Credit: Image donated by Corbis-Bettmann

In May, 1937, SWOC launched the first major steel strike since 1919, against the "Little Steel" companies, including Bethlehem Steel. To prevent an explosion of violence–and to pressure Bethlehem president Eugene Grace to the bargaining table–Pennsylvania Governor George Earle on June 20 declared martial law in Johnstown. Earle soon revoked his declaration, after which the strike quickly collapsed.

Back to Top