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A Museum of History and Art in historic Lipscomb, Texas
Map 13310 Highway 305 · P.O. Box 5
Lipscomb, Texas 79056
806-852-2123
staff@wolfcreekheritagemuseum.org
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September 4, 2011

WOLF CREEK HERITAGE MUSEUM NOTES
by Virginia Scott

MUSEUM HAPPENINGS

The last week of the month and one exhibit comes down and another goes up makes for a busy week. Camille Harrelson's beautiful quilts and paintings were taken down on Wednesday and Amy Winton's wonderful paintings were hung on Friday. Dorothy, Georgia, and Ann came Friday to assist Lovella and Amy if needed. A little bird tells me that Amy hung her paintings and the core team entertained Frank in the work room or did Frank entertain the core team?

It is always a pleasure to have Amy provide us with a show. This year she is exhibiting her paintings of Lipscomb. She is also sharing her first painting at age 7. There will be a reception for her on Sunday, September 18 at 2 pm. Please plan to attend to visit with Amy and hear her stories of her work. Her paintings will be on exhibit till the end of October.

I am writing the column as usual on Monday but this week it is also Labor Day. Hope everyone enjoyed the wonderful weather. I hope this is a sign that fall is here and we are through with the triple digit temperatures for the year.

HISTORICAL MUSINGS

When Peter McGuire was eleven years old, he was selling papers, shining shoes, and cleaning stores to support his mother and six brothers and sisters. His father was in the army; the year was 1863. Through the years, Peter's jobs improved but his work conditions didn't, long hours and low pay. By 1872 Peter was attending meetings and classes in economics and social issues of the day especially concerns pertaining to labor conditions. There was talk of organizing an union and in the spring, Peter and 100,000 workers went on strike.

This event convinced Peter that an organized labor movement was important for the future of workers' rights. He spent the next year speaking to crowds of workers and unemployed people, lobbying the city government for jobs and relief money. He became known as a "disturber of the public peace." The city government ignored his demands. Peter himself could not find a hob in his trade. So he became a labor organizer traveling up and down the east coast. He moved to St. Louis, Missouri and began organizing Carpenters. Soon the idea of organizing workers according to their trades spread around the country. Peter and laborers in other cities planned a holiday for workers on the first Monday in September, halfway between Independence Day and Thanksgiving Day.

On September 5, 1882 the first Labor Day parade was held in New York City, Twenty thousand workers marched in a parade up Broadway. They carried banners that read "LABOR CREATES ALL WEALTH" AND "EIGHT HOURS FOR REST, EIGHT HOURS FOR REST, EIGHT HOURS FOR RECREATION!" Picnics and fireworks occurred after the parade. In 1894, Congress voted it a federal holiday. (source: Celebrate! Holidays in the U.S.A. by the Embassy of the United States of America)

Let us hope this years Labor Day observance will bring a better future for jobs and our country.


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