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Rochester’s central labor bodies date back to 1855 and have a rich history of collaborative efforts to assist workers to organize unions, to win and enforce contracts, to improve working conditions, and to instill solidarity. They have published newspapers, promoted union labels, participated in electoral and legislative politics, conducted education programs, formed unions and supported striking workers, and sustained involvement in civic issues such as health, employment, and housing.

These efforts have had a profound impact on the struggles of Rochester’s workers and unions and on the wider community. Although the value of the central councils which coordinated them was affirmed by the support and participation they received from many thousands of rank and file union members, the only published accounts of this important story were brief accounts published as long ago as 1897 and 1927. Neither account is readily available, and the story of the past 75 years remained unrecorded until now.

Our print and electronic sesquicentennial publications are intended both to fill that gap and to trace more fully the history and contribution of Rochester’s central labor bodies from 1855 to 2005.

All These Years of Effort cover image

Publication cover for
All These Years of Effort

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Remarks by Metro DC Labor Council President Joslyn N.Williams and labor historian Jeremy Brecher are on the book’s back cover.
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