By Richard E. Noble On April 9, 1952 the United Steelworkers of America planned to walk out on strike against U.S. Steel and nine other steel makers. But on April 8 President Harry Truman had ordered his Secretary of Commerce, Henry A. Wallace, to seize most of the Country’s steel mills. Truman’s argument for this action was the protection of the nation’s security. This was really nothing new. During World War I the government had nationalized the railroads, the telegraph lines, and the Smith & Wesson Company. Then again in World War II the government had nationalized the railroads, the coal mines, the midwest trucking operators and others. And in April of 1945 and in August of 1946 Harry had seized twenty-eight industrial properties - sometimes entire industries, the railroads and meat packers for example. But Harry Truman was no FDR or Woodrow Wilson for that matter. And the Korean War was no World War I or World War II. By 1952 neither Harry nor his political party was all that popular. On February 9, 1950 McCarthy denounced the Truman administration on the grounds that they were allowing known communist to run free through the corridors of Washington. But also in 1950 North Korea invaded South Korea and the Korean “Police Action” followed. On September 8, 1950 the Congress passed the Defense Production Act. This gave the president the power to requisition any facilities, property, equipment, supplies, component parts or raw materials for the nation’s defense. The bill also gave the president the power to enact wage and price controls. None of this was new. This was all wartime procedure. But this was Truman’s war not FDR’s or Wilson’s. And was it even a “real” war? The steel owners sued. The steel mills involved included Armco Steel, Bethlehem Steel, Great Lakes Steel Corporation, Inland Steel, Jones and Laughlin Steel, Republic Steel, Sharon Steel, U.S. Steel Wheeling Steel and Youngstown Sheet and Tube and numerous small manufacturers. Even though a few years earlier Harry had threatened to draft all the striking railroad workers, after he had nationalized the railroads successfully, on this occasion he was in total agreement with the workers. On April 8, 1952 he made a radio broadcast from the White House. He told the American people that the steel industry could not be allowed to shut down. “It is vital to the defense effort. It is vital to peace ... We do not have a stockpile of the kinds of steel we need for defense. Steel is flowing directly from the plants to our soldiers at the front in Korea ... If steel production stops it won’t be long before we have to stop making engines for the Air Force planes ... A prolonged shutdown would bring defense production to a halt and throw our domestic economy into chaos.” He went on to inform the public that he was taking over the steel mills and demanding the mill owners and representatives of the mill workers meet in Washington immediately and settle this dispute with the government’s arbitrators. He explained about the wage and price controls that had been put in place to counter inflation. “The union has accepted these rules. The companies have not accepted them ... On November 1, 1951 the union gave notice that in view of the higher cost of living and the wage increases already received by workers in other industries, the steel workers wanted higher wages and better working conditions in their new contract for 1952 ... The steel companies meet with the union but the companies never really bargained ... They said there should be no changes in wages and working conditions - in spite of the fact that there had been substantial changes in many other industries and in spite of the fact that the steel industry is making very high profits ... About three weeks ago on March 20, the wage board recommended certain wage increases and certain changes in working conditions ... The Wage Board’s recommendations were less than the union thought they ought to have. Nevertheless, the union accepted them as a basis for settlement ... When you look into the matter, you find that the Wage Board’s recommendations were fair and reasonable ... The steel workers have had no adjustment in their wages since December 1, 1950. Since that time the cost of living has risen, and workers in such industries as automobiles, rubber, electrical equipment, and meat packing have received increases ranging from 13 to 17 cents an hour ... the steel industry has been lagging behind in these matters, and the improvements suggested by the Board are moderate.” Truman went on and on in defense of the union’s actions but owners still resisted. So Harry nationalized the steel industry. The Supreme Court sided with the mill owners and against the president nevertheless - Youngstown Sheet & Tube co. v. Sawyer, 343 U.S. 579 (1952). The union went on strike and the strike lasted 53 days and ended on July 24, 1952. The steel mill owners it seems were happy to get their mills back and consequently they settled with the union. The union got pretty much what they had asked for, four month earlier.
Books by Richard Edward Noble. Click on covers below for more info and purchasing instructions.
Classic Tragic Novel
Don't Laugh - This Could Have Been Your Life
Funny stories and some strange characters.
Monkey Dishes and Cocktail Fawks
My Harrowing days in the restaurant business. Great Read.
It's a Long Story
Long Short Fiction - Great stories!
Bloggin' Be My Life
"Bloggin' be My Life" contains a selection of some of my more popular Hobo Philosopher blogs.If you enjoy reading this blog, you should love Bloggin' Be My Life.
It's All About Love
It's All About Love is ... all about love. This is the 2nd book of poetry from The Bard From Chelmsford off Arlington. Every poem in this book comes with a prose introduction. If you enjoy poetry this is a simple choice. Have fun!
A Little Something
Traditional poetry from The Bard From Chelmsford Off Arlington with some poignant prose introductions. If you enjoy any type of poetry, you will enjoy this volume. Thanks.
Talking To Myself
This is my third book of poetry.
Bits and Pieces
The Hobo Philosopher - My first book using the Hobo Philosopher brand. Featuring a variety of writing styles and ideas. Look for the Thoughtful Hobo on the cover.
A Baker's Dozen
The Hobo Philosopher: My Second book of Fiction, Creative Non-Fiction and Short Stories. All varieties of short stories - lots of laughs!
Cat Point - and Them Dang Oyster People
Cat Point is the sequel to "The Eastpointer." Both books contain humorous tales about life in a fishing community on the Florida Panhandle. Lots of laughs.
Won 1st Place award for humor in 2007 from Florida Press Association. More wit, wisdom and humor from the yet to be world famous author, R.E. Noble
A Summer with Charlie - Lawrence
Fiction - Salisbury Beach, Lawrence, Mass. Featured in Merrimack Valley Magazine July /Aug. issue 2010
Travel, Humor, Commentary on migrant farm work and illegal immigration still very pertinent today.
"Just Hangin' Out Ma"
Thank God for the Street Corners of Lawrence, Mass. Anecdotes and humorous escapades about growing up in an industrial mill town in the 40s,50s and 60s.
This is the sequel to "Just Hangin' Out, Ma"
That Old Gang of Mine
This is # 3 in my Lawrence Hometown series. The series is about growing up in the 40's, 50's and 60's in an industrial mill town. Sorta like a Huck Finn goes to vist Uncle Ralph, the bus driver, who lives in a big, rundown city. Lots of fun.
Come On-A My House
This is # 4 in my Lawrence Hometown series.The old homested at 32 Chelmsford ST is pictured on the cover..
Down By The Old Mill Stream
# 5 in the Lawrence My Hometown series.
Standing on the Corner is # 6 in the lawrence My Hometown series.
The old Howard Playstead on Lawrence St.
Eat, Drink and Be Merry
# 7 in the Lawrence my Hometown series.
Honor Thy Father and Thy Mother
Classic tragic novel written from child's perspective. Deals with abuse, poverty, unemployment. Pulls no punches.
Noble Notes on Famous Folks
Humorous, satirical notes on everybody from Constantine to Bill Clinton. Inspiration: Willy Cuppy.
America on Strike
History - documented survey of labor strikes in America
Mein Kampf - An Analysis of Book One
Who are the American Nazis - the Liberals or the Conservatives?
MY NAME IS RICHARD EDWARD NOBLE. I AM A FREELANCE WRITER AND I HAVE PUBLISHED 12 BOOKS:"THE EASTPOINTER" - SELECTIONS FROM AWARD WINNING NEWSPAPER COLUMN - "A LITTLE SOMETHING" - POETRY WITH PROSE -"HONOR THY FATHER AND THY MOTHER" - A NOVEL ABOUT GROWING UP IN THE NEW ENGLAND MILL TOWN OF LAWRENCE, MASS, "HOBO-ING AMERICA" - A WORKINGMAN'S TOUR OF THE U.S.A. - "A SUMMER WITH CHARLIE" - THE STORY OF A YOUNG SAILOR'S LAST DAYS AT SALISBURY BEACH, "NOBLE NOTES ON FAMOUS FOLKS" - HUMOROUS ANECDOTES ON FAMOUS FOLKS IN HISTORY,
"AMERICA ON STRIKE" HISTORY BOOK - A SURVEY OF LABOR STRIKES IN AMERICA; "A BAKER'S DOZEN" A BOOK OF HUMOROUS SHORT STORIES; "JUST HANGIN' OUT, MA" - GROWING UP IN THE 40'S, 50'S AND 60'S IN LAWRENCE, MY HOMETOWN, "TENEMENT DWELLERS" - SEQUEL TO JUST HANGIN OUT, MA; MEIN KAMPF - ANALYSIS OF BOOK ONE - HISTORY. CAT POINT - AND THEM DANG OYSTER PEOPLE - SEQUEL TO THE EASTPOINTER
All 12 BOOKS ARE AVAILABLE ON AMAZON.COM, BARNES AND NOBLE AND OTHER INTERNET SOURCES OR FROM NOBLE PUBLISHING. ALL 12 OF MY BOOKS ARE NOW ON KINDLE AT BARGAIN PRICES TOO. IF YOU WOULD LIKE MORE INFORMATION ABOUT DISCOUNTS AND SPECIAL OFFERS E-MAIL ME. MY EMAIL IS ON MY PROFILE PAGE.