By Henry Pelling
The writer leads the reader via a narrative of fight and improvement overlaying greater than 4 centuries: from the medieval guilds and early craftsmen's and labourers' institutions to the dramatic progress of alternate unionism in Britain within the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. He indicates how robust personalities akin to Robert Applegarth, Henry Broadhurst, Tom Mann, Ernest Bevin and Walter Citrine have helped to form the development of present-day unionism, and for this variation he has additional a bankruptcy "On the protective: the 1980s". the writer additionally wrote "The Origins of the Labour Party".
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Additional resources for A History of British Trade Unionism
The more long-term intentions of the founders of the 'Grand National' (as we may call it) were to rationalise the structure of combinations, to achieve a general control of movements for an advance of wages, and to co-ordinate assistance for strikes, especially strikes against a reduction of wages. Such assistance could either be financial, in which case it might take the form of a general levy upon the membership, or it could be organisational, such as by making arrangements for co-operative production by those thrown out of employment.
The demonstration had no immediate effect : but it set a pattern for peaceful political agitation in the metropolis. This, however, was the prelude to a rapid decline of the 'Grand National' and of unionism in general. The 'Grand National' began to break up owing to its inability to provide adequate support for sections of its membership who were on strike. This was especially unfortunate at a time when the very principle of trade unionism was so much on the defensive. Taking advantage of the public alarm about the spread of unionism, many employers tried to eliminate it from among their own employees.
Another expedient was emigration. Among the pioneers in this field were the Potters, who adopted a scheme in the 184o's when they were worried about the possibility of labour-saving machinery being introduced into their craft. They set up an Emigration Society to transport members and their families to the United States, where a tract of land was acquired for farming purposes in Wisconsin. But 'Potterville', as it was called, was never a success, partly because the machinery scare proved to be a false alarm.
A History of British Trade Unionism by Henry Pelling