Transcribed from volume II of Kansas: a cyclopedia of state history, embracing events, institutions, industries, counties, cities, towns, prominent persons, etc. ... / with a supplementary volume devoted to selected personal history and reminiscence. Standard Pub. Co. Chicago : 1912. 3 v. in 4. : front., ill., ports.; 28 cm. Vols. I-II edited by Frank W. Blackmar. Transcribed July 2002 by Carolyn Ward.


Knights of Labor.—As the name indicates, this is a labor organization. The first lodge or assembly was formed by the garment cutters of Philadelphia, Pa., in 1869, with 11 members. No others were founded until in 1872, when 26 local assemblies were organized. The first general assembly was held at Reading, Pa., in 1878, seven states being represented. A declaration of principles was adopted, setting forth the objects of the organization as being the education and union of the toiling masses, in order "to secure to workers the full enjoyment of the wealth they create." To this end the society demanded legislation giving to the people the initiative and referendum; the establishment of bureaus of labor statistics; the prohibition of employment of persons under the age of 15 years; and the reduction of the working day to eight hours. An elaborate ritual was also adopted by this first general assembly, but in 1881 the order became practically an open society, the main object being to unite in one great body the workers of all occupations. In this respect the Knights of Labor differed radically from the ordinary labor union, which limited membership to persons of the same trade or occupation.

Several assemblies were organized in Kansas in the latter '80s, but the society came into prominence as one of the factors that organized the Populist party in Kansas. In the convention at Topeka on June I2, 1890, when the party was launched, the Knights of Labor had 28 delegates. At one time the order was very strong, numbering its members by thousands, and threatening to revolutionize labor legislation. But political strife, strikes and internal dissensions sapped its vitality and it sank into comparative insignificance. The establishment of the Federation of Labor drew away many of the former members of the Knights of Labor, and though the society is still in existence it is of little force in the industrial world.

Pages 79-80 from volume II of Kansas: a cyclopedia of state history, embracing events, institutions, industries, counties, cities, towns, prominent persons, etc. ... / with a supplementary volume devoted to selected personal history and reminiscence. Standard Pub. Co. Chicago : 1912. 3 v. in 4. : front., ill., ports.; 28 cm. Vols. I-II edited by Frank W. Blackmar. Transcribed July 2002 by Carolyn Ward.

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VOLUME I

TITLE PAGE / LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
INTRODUCTION

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I

VOLUME II

TITLE PAGE / LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

J | K | L | Mc | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

VOLUME III

BIOGRAPHICAL INDEXES


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