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Charles Rosenberg

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 ...

Article

Charles Rosenberg

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 ...