Learning Advise




Teacher Notes

You must create a museum-like exhibit of the life and achievements of a major leader of American labor. Many of these leaders will be from the post-Civil War era when American industry went through a period of rapid expansion and the U.S. experienced unprecedented immigration. Some leaders who lived in the early 20th century became involved in social and political movements with outreach beyond the United States. Other leaders from more recent times were involved in the spread of labor union rights to previously under represented segments of the economy such as agriculture.

Here is the list of labor leaders for research. You may wish to include others, or exclude some on this list.

  • Samuel Gompers
  • Eugene Debs
  • Mother Jones
  • Terrence Powderly
  • Bill Haywood
  • John L. Lewis
  • George Meany
  • Philip Murray
  • Walter Reuther
  • Jimmy Hoffa
  • Cesar Chavez

Each exhibit needs the following:

  1. a summary of conditions of workers at the time the leader was active

  2. a brief biography of the leader’s early life

  3. at least one picture of the leader

  4. a timeline that includes events in the society as well as the labor leader’s life and work

  5. a summary of the goals of the leader

  6. a description of the methods used by the leader to achieve his/her goals

  7. something unique about the leader that made him/her effective or ineffective

  8. how the person represents the ideals of America found in the Constitution