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Aluminum, Brick and Glass Workers, Local 9 - MS 34

Introduction | Agency History | Scope and Content | Series Description | Inventory

Introduction

Thirty four linear feet of records from the Aluminum, Brick and Glass Workers, Local 9, Toledo, Ohio, were donated to the Center for Archival Collections in 1977, by the Board of Trustees for Local 9. On November 21, 1984, fourteen additional feet of records were transferred to the Center. These records appear as an addendum to the inventory (Boxes 102-138). The collection is comprised of records which date from 1934 to 1978, and include minutes from regular, executive board and committee meetings; incoming and outgoing correspondence from the union officers (both local and international) and plant managers; and records representative of administrative, financial and personnel activities of this labor union and those businesses and organizations associated with it.

No restrictions exist on the use of this collection and duplication is permitted for purposes of preservation and research. The register first was prepared by Rebecca Wilson, a graduate assistant in American Studies, and in 1988, updated and revised by Susan M. Hughes, a manuscript processor employed through a grant provided by the Ohio Historical Society.

** Please note that the initial collection was donated and processed under the name of United Glass and Ceramic Workers of North America, Local 9. The inventory for Boxes 1-100 are listed under this name.

Agency History

The Aluminum, Brick and Glass Workers, Local 9, Toledo, Ohio, an offshoot of the Glass Cutters Union, was chartered in 1933. From its inception the Union underwent a series of name changes. Originally chartered as the Federation of Flat Glass Workers, the Union changed its name in 1940 to the Federation of Glass, Ceramic, and Silica Sand Workers. In 1954, the Canadian glass workers affiliated with the Union, thus changing its status to an international union. Also in 1954, its name changed once again to the United Glass and Ceramic Workers of North America. Within the last few years, the name was changed once more to its present title.

Local 9, which represents all the glass and ceramic workers of the Libbey-Owens-Ford Company (LOF) in the Toledo area was affiliated in 1937 with the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO), before the CIO's merger with the American Federation of Labor (AFL). Today, union headquarters are located at Lime City Road, Rossford, Ohio. Local 9 represents approximately forty-five hundred workers employed by four LOF divisions.

Some of the key personnel who were influential in the further development of the Union were President William Akos (1944-1952); Leland Beard, International Vice President (1940-1962); Joe Gembus, Financial-Recording Secretary (1955-1968); President Jack Miles (1958-1971); Harry Scott, Financial Secretary (1940-1954); and, Irvin de Shettler, a founder of the Union.

The purpose of the Union is to represent the interests of the "working person" in negotiating with the management of Libbey-Owens-Ford. Since its establishment in 1933, Local 9 has gone on strike against the Libbey-Owens-Ford Company four times. Three of these strikes, which occurred in the fall of 1945, 1958 and 1968, were all authorized by the Union. Each of these strikes were relatively short in duration and non-violent in nature. The longest of these three strikes was the one held in the fall of 1958, which lasted for three weeks. It was this strike which changed the bargaining pattern of the glass workers. Prior to 1958, if a glass plant anywhere in the United States or Canada was on strike or negotiating a new contract, all "brother" unions would sympathize and cease negotiations or work until a settlement occurred or the contract was signed. However in 1958, after being on strike for three weeks the Toledo area workers did not want to wait for the Pittsburgh plants to finish their negotiations. Thus, they immediately began working under their new contract. The fourth strike which occurred in Aluminum, Brick and Glass Workers the fall of 1965 was a wildcat strike that was not authorized by the Union and lasted for three days. Today, Local 9 continues to serve as a strong representative of glass and ceramic workers in the Toledo area.

The present offices (1997) of the union are27087 Oakmead Drive, Toledo, Ohio 43551.

Scope and Content

The collection of the Aluminum, Brick and Glass Workers, Local 9, documents the history, inner workings, and daily operations of this Union. The material dates from 1934 through 1978, with the bulk of the material dating from 1957 to 1965. The majority of the collection consists of minutes of the regular meetings, executive board meetings, international board meetings, meetings of various plant operations and recreation committees; correspondence, both incoming and outgoing of the Union and management officials; financial records; grievances; leaves of absence; copies of the Union newsletter (Nips and Chips); and a large collection of items dealing with the daily operation of the Union.

The minutes, which comprise the bulk of the material, are divided into five categories; regular meetings, executive board meetings, international board meetings, joint executive board and wage committee meetings, and plant operations and committee meetings. The proceedings of the regular meetings and the executive board meetings from 1957 through 1973 are all recorded on reel to reel tapes. The tapes are one of the particularly strong points of the collection as they provide insight into the inner workings and dynamics of a union which normally are not seen (or heard) by the "outsider."

The regular meeting minutes, dating from 1936 to 1978, contain the transactions of the Union rank and file. The information in these minutes concerns grievances of the members; daily policies and procedures of the Union and Libbey-Owens-Ford; the fringe benefits received; and the involvement of the Union in athletic events. Also, information about what was currently transpiring between other companies and their workers is often provided. The Union was particularly interested in sports in the area. Its interest in various sporting events is highlighted in these minutes.

The executive board meeting minutes date from 1937 to 1978. These minutes include decisions of the Union's arbitration and negotiation policies; obtaining fringe benefits, such as life and health insurance for the members; the funding of various civic projects; the appointment of committees; and interpretations and changes of the Union's bylaws. The joint executive board and wage committee did not meet at regular intervals. Their meetings were only scheduled when a problem arose which required their attention. These problems included wage increases, changes in shifts in the plants, plant conditions, and workers morale and safety.

The International Board minutes, which date from 1940 to 1973, document the activities of this governing board of all the local unions in the United States and Canada. This board sets overall union policies, acts on requests from local unions and dictates to the body of the whole union.

The last set of minutes are from the various committee and plant "shop" operations. These minutes document the individual shops and committees located within the various plants represented by the Union. The dates for each of these committee minutes vary; overall they encompass the dates, 1938 to 1978. Some of the types of committees represented in this group are: athletic, constitution and bylaws, entertainment, political education, and wage. Some of the departments or shops represented in this group are: laminated edge room, casting hall, laminated cutting, box shop, laminated assembly, grinders and polishers, thermopane, and wareroom.

The second major record group contains the correspondence files of Local 9, the International Union, and plant personnel. Both incoming and outgoing correspondence are included in this group. The bulk of the correspondence is comprised of the President's and Financial Secretary's letters. The majority of the incoming correspondence deals with problems between the workers and the Company or the workers and the Union. The bulk of the outgoing correspondence was sent to Libbey-Owens-Ford and deals with grievances as well as advising the Company of the agenda for upcoming meetings. There are a number of files of correspondence of the International officers, particularly those of Leland Beard, International Vice President (1940-1962). The subjects of this correspondence include grievances, wage negotiation matters, and correspondence from local presidents. The correspondence of the Financial Secretary concerns the payments of dues, bills from outside organizations, and correspondence with the International Financial Secretary. Other correspondence deals with charitable organizations, the credit union and the Toledo area AFL-CIO.

Financial records include monthly and quarterly financial statements dating from 1937 to 1978; audit reports, 1935-1956; and, quarterly trustees reports, 1940-1956. These records document the financial stability of the Union including a controversy during President William Akos tenure involving the misuse of funds.

Other documents included in this collection are leaves of absence (1940-1948), plant notices (1947-1970), industrial compensation reports (1942-1958), and agreements (1934-1976). The leaves of absence are particularly interesting as the majority of them occur during World War II. The plant notices provide information on date and location as well as the agenda of meetings. The industrial compensation reports are individual reports containing the type and reason for compensation. A major portion of the agreements are from the various departments of the Libbey-Owens-Ford plants represented by Local 9. Agreements also are found which cover seniority and overtime under union regulations. Aluminum, Brick and Glass Workers.

The remaining collection contains information pertaining to the daily administration of the Union. Some of the subjects included in this information are the National Labor Relations Board, Toledo Industrial Union Council, Toledo-Labor-Management Citizens Committee, labor rates, issues of the Nips and Chips newsletter (1951-1957), job descriptions, insurance policy issues, hospitalization policies, memoranda concerning work stoppages (1945), election results, pamphlets and brochures.

Please note that this collection includes an addendum of materials which were added to the main collection and are located in Boxes 102-138). This collection is an excellent source in documenting the development and operations of a large local union representing workers involved in a major industry of the Toledo area.

Series Description

PROCEEDINGS

MINUTES
1935-1978, Box 1-57, 102-113
Taped minutes precede printed copies and are arranged chronologically. Printed minutes are arranged with Executive Board and regular meetings preceding departmental and committee meetings, which are arranged alphabetically and within chronologically.
The minutes generally include financial reports, committee reports, motions and resolutions, grievances heard, and general business conducted.

CORRESPONDENCE

CORRESPONDENCE
1936-1976, Box 57-70, 114-120
Arranged by subject and within chronologically.
Union officials' correspondence precedes those arranged by subject. Addendum arranged alphabetically by subject and within chronologically. Includes incoming and outgoing correspondence of Local 9 president, vice-president and financial secretary; correspondence received from International Union officers. Also includes correspondence regarding various union committees; exchanges between Local 9 and L.O.F. Some transcripts of phone conversations also included.

SUBJECT FILES

PERSONNEL ISSUES
1939-1971, Box 71-74, 81, 88, 93, 100, 124, 134
Arranged by type of record and within chronologically.
Includes leave request forms (arranged alphabetically by name); bound ledger documenting pay for union employees; reports of hourly supervisors; grievances; charges filed; disciplinary action, discrimination case file. Includes legal documents.

COMMITTEE/ORGANIZATIONS FILES
1947-1976, Box 90, 121
Arranged by name and within chronologically.
Includes files for such entities as the Toledo-Labor-Management Citizens Committee, Community Chest, Toledo Central Labor Union, Health Planning Association of Northwest Ohio, Toledo Area AFL-CIO Council.

NATIONAL WAR LABOR BOARD
1944-1945, Box 89
Arranged chronologically
Includes correspondence, directive orders, press releases and briefs and statements involving disputes between the union and various companies.

NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS BOARD
June 1948, 1966-1970, Box 89, 125
Arranged chronologically
Includes statement of dispute between LOF and International Association of Machinists, Local 105, as well as legal court documents on disputes between LOF and Local 9.

LABOR/WAGE/BONUS RATES
1935-1975, Box 91, 92, 132, 133, 134
Arranged by LOF division or plant.
Includes printed wage schedules for various positions within the LOF divisions and plants.

PLANT NOTICES
1947-1970, Box 82-85, 137, 138
Arranged chronologically
Includes flyers notifying union members within the various LOF plants of meetings, social and athletic activities, elections.

COMPANY NOTICES
1962-1975, Box 134
Arranged by plant and within chronologically. Includes notices of plant shut-downs and vacations.

GENERAL SUBJECT FILES
1930-1966, Box 94-96
Arranged alphabetically by subject and within chronologically.
Includes various printed documents such as officer lists, committee lists and files, memorandum, press releases, reports.

PLANT/DIVISION FILES
1937-1965, Box 97
Arranged by plant/division and within chronologically.
Includes various printed documents dealing with specific LOF plant or division issues.

CONVENTION FILES
1940-1976, Box 98, 122, 135, 136, 137
Arranged chronologically
Includes resolutions, reports, credential committee files from CIO, AFL-CIO, wage, constitutional, and glassworkers union conventions.

REPORTS

FINANCIAL STATEMENTS
1935-1970, 1974-1975, Box 74-81, 124
Arranged by type of report and within chronologically.
Includes quarterly and monthly financial statements and audits of Local 9 as well as the International Union. Addendum contains international union financial reports for 1974 and 1975.

INDUSTRIAL COMPENSATION
1942-1958, Box 86
Arranged alphabetically by surname.
Includes claims and findings on workmen's compensation by the Industrial Commission of Ohio.

ELECTION REPORTS
1940-1978, Box 98-99, 123-124
Arranged by subject and within chronologically.
Elections of union officials, committee persons, amendments to constitution and bylaws; names of candidates and voting results included.

GENERAL REPORTS
1953-1976, Box 124-125
Arranged alphabetically by subject and within chronologically.
Includes Political Action Committee and Committee on Political Education reports. Toledo Health and Retirees Center annual reports; reports from the U.S. Department of Labor containing plant employment history records; U.S. Tariff Commission reports include information on 1964 hearings to lower tariff on foreign sheet glass and tile.

LEGAL DOCUMENTS

AGREEMENTS AND ARBITRATION
1934-1976, Box 87, 88, 99, 126-132, 134
Arranged by name of agreeing parties and within chronologically.
Includes agreements and arbitration between Local 9 and the International Union and LOF; also agreements with "brother" unions. Original agreement of 1934 when Local 9 was formed, and agreements between LOF and the various plants.

LISTS

GRIEVANCE MEN/RETIREES
1972-1978, Box 135
Arranged chronologically
Includes lists of grievance men and retirees from the various plants and correspondence relating to the annual banquet.

PRINTED MATERIAL

NIPS AND CHIPS NEWSLETTER
1951-1957, Box 93
Arranged chronologically
Includes copies of newsletter of AFL-CIO glassworkers.

PUBLICATIONS
1943-1975, Box 100, 138
Arranged by title
Includes pamphlets and brochures on LOF, glass industry, labor related issues, and the glass workers.

PHOTOGRAPHS

PHOTOGRAPHS
c. 1950-1969, Box l0l and oversize
Arranged by subject.
Includes mostly unidentified black and white photographs of meetings, union activities, union officials and workers.

Manuscripts by Subject | Labor Collections | Inventory of MS 34