sharecropper and minister, was born in the Mississippi Delta, the tenth of twelve children of Miles Carter, a sharecropper descended from Georgia slaves owned by the forebears of President Jimmy Carter. The name of Miles Carter's wife is not recorded The Carters lived a peripatetic existence moving from one plantation to another but never escaping the cycle of poverty that characterized much of black life in the Jim Crow South Despite the hopelessness of that situation Miles Carter was an ambitious man who occasionally advanced to the position of renter Unlike sharecroppers who usually possessed antiquated farming tools and equipment and received only half of the value of their crop renters often owned their own mules and implements and could expect to earn a three quarter share of their crop which in the Delta was inevitably cotton Miles Carter s success as a renter required however that his ...
Steven J. Niven
a leading rank-and-file organizer of the Packinghouse Workers Organizing Committee in Chicago, and member of the subsequent United Packinghouse Workers of America, particularly instrumental in organizing the six “little” packers, providing a base from which to secure recognition at the dominant Armour, Swift, Cudahy and Wilson companies.
Details of Washington's birth have not been documented, but he grew up in Chicago, the son of a butcher at the Swift meatpacking company, who moved the family from Mississippi in 1915. Initially, Washington's father tried to obtain work in bricklaying and plastering, as he had in the Vicksburg area before moving north. Excluded from these occupations by the building trades unions' refusal to accept African Americans, he became a bitter opponent of unionization in the meatpacking industry, literally turning his back when representatives of the Stockyards Labor Council invited him to join.
Between the efforts of SLC to incorporate and advance ...
a leading organizer and international vice president of the Packinghouse Workers Union of America, following a period as a respected organizer of the Swift Company's in-house welfare system, who later worked with the Political Action Committee of the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO), and with the merged AFL-CIO's Committee on Political Action (COPE).
Born in Vicksburg, Mississippi, Philip Mitchell Weightman Jr. was the oldest son of a man of the same name, born around 1859, equally skilled at brickmaking, bricklaying, and butchering, and the former Sara Lee Watts, born around 1870, both native to Mississippi. Weightman's paternal grandmother was one of several sisters born enslaved in Brunswick, Virginia, and brought to Vicksburg by owners who refused to break up the family group. His paternal grandfather was classified as “white” by the laws and customs of the nineteenth century; the elder Weightman's “white” cousin Frank Hall owned ...
anti–labor union activist in the Chicago meatpacking industry during the time of the Stockyards Labor Council (SLC), particularly 1916–1919, was one of the few men known by name for his leading role in anti-union agitation among African American employees, and those seeking work from the large and smaller packing companies.
Williams's birth, previous experience, and later life are unknown, although there are faint clues for speculation. Even his motives and loyalties are unclear, and probably more complex than any partisan for or against organized labor may have credited. He may have been born around 1874 in Texas, the son of Lizar Williams, who had been born, like Williams's father, in Georgia. If so, he was living in 1910 in a rooming house in Fort Worth, working at odd jobs.
According to two African American SLC floor committeemen Williams was the leader of a group of men who came ...