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International Ladies Garment Workers Union (ILGWU)

Fannia M. Cohn

Fannia M. Cohn led one of the largest trade unions in the US, but clashed with male leadership for years over her belief in the importance of creating independent institutions to educate workers.

Clara Lemlich Shavelson

Clara Lemlich Shavelson pushed union leaders to recognize the importance of women in the labor movement and organized vital demonstrations for worker’s rights and cost-of-living issues.

Rose Finkelstein marries in true union style

December 25, 1921

Union organizer Rose Finkelstein Norwood said, "When I saw a detective coming, I’d hide in the coats."

Rose Finkelstein leads successful strike

April 20, 1919

Rose Finkelstein leads 8,000 women in successful six-day strike against New England Telephone and Telegraph Company.

10 Things You Should Know About Fannia Cohn

  1. Fannia Cohn, born in 1885, grew up in a well-to-do family in what was the western part of the Russian empire:  Kletzk, now part of Belarus. She was educated at home, and by the time she was 15, she was involved in secret revolutionary activities.

  2. Just before turning 20, she and her brother immigrated to the U.S. aided by wealthy relatives who were already here. Fannia’s first job in the U.S. was with the American Jewish Women’s Committee helping other Jewish women arriving at Ellis Island.

Remembering the Uprising of the 20,000

On a cold November morning onehundred years ago today, more than 20,000 immigrant workers--mostly young Jewishwomen--took to the streets of the lower east side of New York, kicking off aneleven-week general strike of the shirtwaist industry knows as the Uprising ofthe 20,000.

"Something Rotten in America"

June 27, 1931

Labor economist Theresa Wolfson was the principal speaker at the opening of the Barnard College Summer School for Women Workers in Industry.

Triangle Waist Factory fire

March 25, 1911

A fire in the Triangle Waist Factory killed 146 workers, mostly young Jewish and Italian women, sparking a wave of labor activism and factory reform legislation.

Labor activist Rose Pesotta organizes in Akron, Ohio

February 25, 1936

Labor activist Rose Pesotta aided striking workers of Goodyear Rubber tire factory in Akron, Ohio.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "International Ladies Garment Workers Union (ILGWU)." (Viewed on July 22, 2014) <http://jwa.org/tags/international-ladies-garment-workers-union-ilgwu>.

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