Gompers And The Progressive Era

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The work of Samuel Gompers acted as a catalyst to the dawning of the Progressive Era. Gompers’ revolutionary union work advocated for social justice and regulation within factories. HIs work with expanding the rights of workers through factory regulation and organized unions was continued even after his death by the organization her started in 1886. The American Federation of Labor outlasted even the Knights of Labor, and today is still a well respected organization. The American Federation of Labor grew from 50,000 members in 1886, to nearly 3 million members in 1924. This significant growth shows that Gompers not only established a system that helped workers, but also a system that worked. What made the American Federation of labor different…show more content…
In 1887, Samuel Gompers mused, “... I hold it as a self-evident proposition that no successful attempt can be made to reach those ends without first improving present conditions.” What Gompers is suggesting is that regulations to protect the workers must be made before one attempts to abolish bigger discrepancies. His base work in improving workplace regulations resulted in a stricter hand in government telling businesses what they can and can’t do. Gompers creation of the American Federation of Labor made workers of America a more united force, that led to changes for the good of the working class. One of these changes that occurred from Samuel Gompers work was the Adamson Act. In 1916, which instilled an eight hour work day for interstate railroad workers, and also overtime wages. This was a victory for the American Federation of Labor because this act soon spread into more extreme business regulations. One such regulation was the Fair Labor Standards Act. Although this act was passed fourteen years after Gompers death, in 1924, this act was tied to all the work he had done with his union organization. The Fair Labor Standards Act enacted a forty hour work week, and established a national minimum wage. This act also guaranteed overtime wage and prohibited most workers who were miners. Theses regulations, although not always fully enforced, helped the life…show more content…
He tried to secure economic independence for skilled trade workers by advocating for trade unionism. This restriction of union membership was significant because it resulted in more specialized reforms and demands for that specific group. Gompers success in his work in social justice for unions affected the conditions of workers through regulation acts, such as the Fair Labor Standards Act in 1938, and the Adamson Act in 1916. By creating this powerful union, Samuel Gompers contributed to the working class being treated fairly. His victories led the workers of America to an established minimum wage and fair hours, which overall improved their life quality during the hard times of

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