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E. H. Butler Library, Buffalo State, The State University of New York

Archives & Special Collections: Bell Aircraft Corporation & U.A.W. Local 501 - Papers & Strike of 1949

The Monroe Fordham Regional History Center

Bell Aircraft Corporation and the United Automobile, Aircraft and Agricultural Implement Workers International Union Local 501: Papers & Strike of 1949

The papers in this collection were organized, indexed, and microfilmed by John S. Olszowka, a graduate history student working with Dr. James McDonnell.  John’s Master’s Thesis was written on this topic and published in 1992 under the title, “The Bell Aircraft Corporation and U.A.W. Local 501: The Strike of 1949.” During the course of his research John contacted many of the persons who actually participated in the strike.  Many of those persons had preserved primary materials (memos, reports, leaflets, and other first hand materials that pertain to the strike). Those materials were then prepared for microfilming.  The materials were filmed in the Buffalo State College History Department.

This 1949 strike arose over the application of security regulations and economic demands during the renegotiation of the contract. A strike ensued and the company secured an injunction to restrain the mass picketing. Violence resulted in the arrest of some of the strikers.

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