cover of book

American City: A Rank and File History of Minneapolis
by Charles Rumford Walker
foreword by Mary Lethert Wingerd
University of Minnesota Press, 2005
Paper: 978-0-8166-4607-4
Library of Congress Classification F614.M557W35 2005
Dewey Decimal Classification 977.6579


In the spring of 1934, a small group of militant union organizers led Minneapolis truckers on a series of strikes that sought to break the city's antiunion grip. The striking truckers, in protest of scab workers, took to the streets of the city's warehouse district where they faced violent opposition from the police and members of the Citizen's Alliance, a group representing Minneapolis's business community. The conflict exploded when police fired on the unarmed strikers, killing four and injuring countless others. The events surrounding Bloody Friday shifted the balance of power between labor and business in Minneapolis and proved to be a significant victory for the labor movement nationwide, contributing to the ratification of the landmark National Labor Relations Act. When first published in 1937, Charles Rumford Walker's American City was praised as an evenhanded portrayal of the truckers' strike. Focusing on the personal experiences of the participants, Walker recounts the interests, motives, and passions on both sides of the conflict, capturing the heated emotions of those involved. He offers a vivid account of a period that transformed Minneapolis and forged the way for workers' rights nationwide.

Nearby on shelf for United States local history / The West. Trans-Mississippi Region. Great Plains / Minnesota: