Events of May 18, 1902-New York Times

The New York Times, May 19, 1902

EAST SIDE BOYCOTTERS MEET AND ORGANIZE. Form the Ladies’ Anti-Beef Trust Association. Plan to Establish Co-operative Stores If Prices Are Not Lowered—Rioters Take a Day Off.

The Kosher beef rioters of the east side, and, in fact, all over the city, took a day off yesterday to rest from their strenuous labors of the past week, though one large meeting was held. Consequently the sections which had been marked with disorder were quiet and free from disturbances. The fact that all the butcher shops were closed induced not a little to this tranquil condition of affairs. The police, however, were alert, and reserves were held in readiness at all the stations in the east side during the day and night.

The people are beginning to realize that attempts by physical force to cause the reduction of beef is useless on account of the fines imposed upon nearly all prisoners by the Magistrates, and if the sentiment of a meeting held yesterday at 412 Grand Street becomes general, they will adopt more peaceful methods in order to accomplish their object.

About 500 persons attended the meeting which was called for the purpose of effecting a permanent organization and to discuss a future plan of action which would not make necessary a clash with the police. The majority of those present were women, and the meeting was characterized by many caustic speeches denouncing the police and Magistrates for arresting and fining them. One woman said that she had applied to Commissioner Partridge for the privilege of holding an open-air meeting, but that he had refused, saying that a number of rabbis of the east side had objected. When one of the rabbis was appealed to, she added, he denounced the methods employed by the women in order to have the price of beef reduced.

Mrs. Sarah Edelson, who was generally spoken of as the leader of the boycott against the butchers, was not chosen as Chairman, though she had many supporters in the meeting. It was decided to give to the organization the name of the Ladies’ Anti-Beef Trust Association, and Mrs. Carolyn Schatzberg, a widow, of 204 East Broadway, was elected Chairman. Mrs. Pauline Frickel of 401 Grand Street was elected Treasurer, succeeding Mrs. Rottenburg. The Garment Workers’ Union sent a number of delegates to the meeting, and one of their number, Isadore Blumenthal, was elected Vice Chairman. Jacob Kirschberg of 173 Madison Street was chosen as Secretary.

A Committee on Boycott was then selected, composed of five women. They were instructed by the officers of the organization to appoint sub-committees, and visit the people in the tenements of the east side and persuade them not to buy meat until the prices were reduced to those of a year ago, which were 10 to 12 cents a pound. It was the sentiment of the meeting that the association should use its influence to prevent disturbances and consequent clashes with the police. The Committee on Boycott were therefore instructed that when they saw women coming out of butchers’ shops after buying meat to argue with them, and try to enlist their sympathy in boycotting the butchers.

An auxiliary committee was appointed composed of several men, in some cases the husbands of the women serving officially. Their mission will be to visit the Bronx, Harlem, Brooklyn, and Long Island City to appoint committees in those places to work among the meat consumers in favor of the boycott cause. An endeavor will also be made to reach the Christian butchers and induce them to support the movement.

The different labor unions and benevolent associations will be appealed to for sympathy and financial support. The trades unions will be asked to send delegates to the meetings of the Ladies’ Anti-Beef Trust Association to be held this week.

Secretary Kirschberg said after the meeting that money was coming in from all sources and that already $300 had been expended in paying the fines of those members who had been arrested. Collections were being taken up all over the east side.

“The Jewish people,” he said, “are all with us and they are contributing readily and generously. Some of the women arrested still remain in jail, but we will have them released just as soon as the necessary funds are sent to us.

“It is our plan to establish co-operative stores, unless the price of meat is reduced by the butchers, and we will buy our meat outside of New York, where the trust has no control. We are in communication with Philadelphia wholesalers and butchers, and where the kosher beef is killed and certified to by the rabbi. We believe that we can establish as many as two hundred stores on the east side, one located at every fifth block. Each customer will be a stockholder to the amount of his purchase. The price of meat will be 10 cents per pound and the profits on it will be divided among buyers.”

A meeting will be held soon by the United Hebrew Trades at 57 Rivington Street, the object being to support the boycotters and perhaps affiliate with them.

The kosher butchers were to have a meeting yesterday at New Irving Hall, but Capt. Walsh sent for President Goldman and others of the organization and told them that he would not permit it, so the meeting was postponed…

New York Times, May 19, 1902.


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Jewish Women's Archive. "Events of May 18, 1902-New York Times." (Viewed on April 17, 2024) <>.