by William Issel and Robert Cherny
Sailors organizing undersea cables on the US Cableship Dellwood in 1924.
Photo: Washington State Libraries, Special Collections, IND0659
For San Francisco, as for the rest of the nation, the war brought increases both in union membership and in bargaining agreements. Spurred by a high level of inflation, unions demanded wage increases, and unionization spread among workers not previously organized. Metal trades workers struck in late 1917 and, with the assistance of federal mediators, won substantial pay increases. Federal mediation prevented or ended strikes throughout the war period, but an effort to organize the city’s streetcar workers failed. The culinary unions rebounded from their earlier defeat and even managed to secure recognition from the city’s most prominent hotels for the first time. During the war years, the Chamber of Commerce preferred to play a less prominent role in labor relations, limiting itself largely to statements against an anti-injunction bill, praising the governor for vetoing it, and publicizing former president Taft’s remarks on labor relations.(41)
In 1914, the formation of the Merchants’ and Manufacturers’ Association had seemed to herald a labor war with the open shop as the employers’ object, but the imminence of the Panama Pacific International Exposition had dissipated that threat. In 1916, the formation of the Law and Order Committee of the Chamber of Commerce had seemed to hold similar portents, but war had intervened. In 1919, the long-anticipated open-shop drive finally materialized, with the first major successes by employers coming on the waterfront and in the metal trades. San Francisco was not the only city to experience labor conflict in 1919. Throughout the nation, unions that had waxed strong during the war now sought to bring their members’ wages into line with ever-increasing prices—dubbed “HCL” (high cost of living) in the newspapers of the day. This push for wages coincided, in San Francisco as elsewhere, with growing fears of Bolshevism in Europe and radicalism in the United States.
All these elements came together in a strike by the Riggers’ and Stevedores’ Union, Local 38–33 of the International Longshoremen’s Association. The union had, for some years, included a sizable contingent of radicals, sympathetic to the Industrial Workers of the World. A strike by the union in 1916, in violation of its contract, had been the catalyst in the formation of the Law and Order Committee. In 1919, the union struck again, demanding not just wage increases but also representation on the boards of directors of the companies involved, a 10 percent interest in the ownership of the companies, and a quarter of all future dividends. The strike vote violated procedures specified in the local’s constitution, and the employers refused to bargain, declaring that no faith could be placed in any agreement with radicals. The employers then assisted in forming the Longshoremen’s Association, called the “Blue Book” union. Only through this company union could work be secured on the waterfront from 1919 through 1934. The Riggers’ and Stevedores’ Union, the oldest union in the city, expired, the first major casualty of the postwar open-shop campaign.(42)
Soon after the longshoremen voted to strike, the Bay Cities Metal Trades Council also walked out, striking shipyard employers throughout the area. The Labor Council supported this action fully, appealing nationwide for funds and contributing $100,000 itself to the cause, but to no avail. After six months, the Metal Trades Council acknowledged defeat, and the open shop became standard in the metal trades.(43)
Birth of the Industrial Association, 1921
In 1921, the open-shop drive reached the very heart of union strength, the Building Trades Council. The struggle between the BTC and contractors gave birth to the organization that would dominate industrial relations in the city for the next decade and a half— the Industrial Association of San Francisco. During 1919 and 1920, building contractors’ associations slowly merged and evolved until, by October 1920, the Builders’ Exchange had developed a degree of centralization comparable with that of the BTC. In February 1920, the Builders’ Exchange and the BTC entered into an agreement tying wage increases to the cost of living, but in September the Builders’ Exchange ordered all employers to refuse any wage increases. Amidst threats of strikes and lockouts, Acting Mayor Ralph McLeran requested the Industrial Relations Committee of the Chamber of Commerce (successor to the Law and Order Committee) to bring about a settlement. The Industrial Relations Committee suggested that both sides submit wage disputes to an arbitration board. Faced with the alternatives of arbitration or lockout, the BTC reluctantly agreed to arbitrate, convinced that failure to do so would bring the city’s bankers and businessmen into the fray on the side of the employers. When the arbitration board recommended an across-the-board wage reduction of 7.5 percent, the BTC refused to accept the finding. The Builders’ Exchange accused the BTC of backing out on a commitment and declared a lockout. The Chamber of Commerce called a mass meeting (like that of 1916) at which the bankers and businessmen of the city pledged support for the Builders’ Exchange. When the BTC remained adamant, the Builder’s Exchange announced that the lockout would be ended by the establishment of the open shop. BTC president McCarthy thereupon convinced the BTC to adopt the arbitrators’ award, but the Builders’ Exchange would not back down from their commitment to the open shop. BTC unions struck but eventually returned to work in defeat, under open-shop conditions, with a 7.5 percent wage reduction, “elimination of those rules which hitherto have tended to reduce output and increase costs,” and no access to construction sites by BTC business agents.(44)
This 1934 aerial shot over San Francisco's financial district shows the powerful corporations and their new buildings clustered there: Shell Building in foreground right, Standard Oil Building foreground left, Russ Building at left center, Commercial Union Assurance Building with cupola at 315 Montgomery at center. To its right is Louis Lurie's Pacific National Bank Building.
Photo: OpenSFHistory.org, wnp27.7764
Under the auspices of the Chamber of Commerce, a Citizens’ Committee was formed in mid-1921 to support the Builders’ Exchange and to promote the open shop elsewhere. Of the $1 million that was raised, about a third came from only thirty firms. Standard Oil of California and the Southern Pacific Company led the list of contributors, with $30,000 each, followed closely by the J. D. and A. B. Spreckels Company with $25,000. The city’s sixteen banks donated a total of $137,362; the Anglo and London Paris National Bank, the Bank of California, Crocker Bank, and Wells Fargo Bank each gave $15,000. Associated Oil, Pacific Gas and Electric, the Santa Fe Railroad, and Union Oil Company also contributed $15,000 each. Thirteen companies with interests in Hawaiian sugar gave a total of $84,000, led by C and H Sugars contribution of $25,000. Eleven companies contributed $10,000 each, and 1,500 firms and individuals gave amounts ranging from $5 to $10,000. Members of the Citizens’ Committee and of the Industrial Relations Committee of the Chamber of Commerce, groups with overlapping memberships, soon created the Industrial Association of San Francisco, a permanent body dedicated to the open shop and committed to “efficiency in industry,” “the right of an employer to engage or dismiss men individually on merit.” and “the public interest.”(45)
Civic Patriotism and the American Plan
Those who led the Industrial Association (IA) were cut from similar cloth. Members of the IA board of directors also held directorships in the most significant companies in San Francisco and elsewhere on the Pacific Coast. Virtually all the major companies of the city appeared on the IA board at some time, including Pacific Gas and Electric, the Southern Pacific Company, Matson Navigation, California Packing Company; Fireman's Fund Insurance, D. Ghirardelli Company, Haas Brothers, Levi Strauss and Company, Mailliard and Schmiedell, American-Hawaiian Steamship Company, Alexander and Baldwin, and the major department stores. The IA board also counted representatives of several national companies, including U.S. Rubber, Westinghouse, Bethlehem Shipbuilding, Pierce-Arrow, General Electric, and General Cigar. The advisory board consistently included representatives of the Bank of California and the various Fleishhacker interests (Anglo-California Trust Company, Anglo and London Paris National Bank, Anglo-California Bank).(46)
Leaders of the IA filled active roles in the city’s Chamber of Commerce and some took similar roles at state or national levels. They belonged to the most exclusive clubs in San Francisco and some held similar memberships in Los Angeles and New York. They helped to found or direct the city’s symphony, opera, and Art Association, and they provided similar leadership for everything from the Community Chest to Stanford University, from the Boy Scouts and YMCA to the California Historical Society, from Children’s Hospital to the Republican party.(47) For them, the IA occupied only one small niche in busy and complex lives, and they defined its nature and objectives in a fashion consistent with their other civic activities.
Early in the history of the IA, spokesmen defined its victory over the Building Trades Council as “more a contribution to civic patriotism than to anything else.” They called their magazine American Plan and their newsletter American Plan Progress. IA leaders, they assured the world, “have dedicated their best to this community development, and their only reward—and surely there could be no greater—has been the satisfaction of seeing San Francisco once again a free city in every sense of the word, in which capital can safely invest.” “We are all San Franciscans,” said IA president Colbert Coldwell in 1927, “with a common point of view—the welfare of the city.” He portrayed the IA as the key to establishing a trinity of interests . . . that will insure our industrial peace and prosperity for the years to come,” a trinity composed of labor, employers, and the public—represented by the Industrial Association.(48)
The “American Plan” meant more than just the open shop. The IA established the “impartial wage board” as the means of setting wages. Periodically throughout the 1920s and early 1930s, the 1A convened boards to compare the rate of pay in the building trades in San Francisco with those in other cities and to make recommendations for adjustments. The IA’s American Plan package also included apprenticeship schools, an employment agency, and work permits. The apprenticeship schools were the IA’s solution to the scarcity of skilled workers. By training more workers, the IA sought to avoid “the fallacy of seeking to meet a labor shortage by giving the same mechanics higher wages.” According to the IA, these schools represented a genuine community service: “We have taken some of these lads who were utterly unskilled and unfit for anything except driving automobiles, and made of them useful mechanics commanding a high wage, and splendid citizens of this community.”(49) In addition to the schools, the IA also operated an employment agency. According to the IA, the placement agency paid no regard to union or nonunion status. In fact, in the construction industry at least, no work site ever had more than 50 percent union members.(50)
Union Opposition to the American Plan
Problems arose, to be certain, in maintaining the open shop. Iron molders kept up opposition to the IA throughout the early 1920s. The IA accused the molders of using a roving “wrecking crew” and of “regularly shooting down or otherwise assaulting in the most cruel and brutal manner defenseless American Plan foundry workers.”(51)
When the Carpenters’ Union struck in 1926, the IA charged them, too, with “slugging and killing.” In fact, the carpenters’ strike posed the most serious challenge to the IA between 1921 and 1934. The strike began on April 1 at the prompting of the national headquarters of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners; the national officers took a direct hand in strike planning from the beginning. The IA portrayed the effort to regain the union shop as a power play by the union, aimed at American Plan carpenters: “It is not a strike against employers or capital, but a strike of carpenter against carpenter, with the public and the prosperity of the city threatened.”(52)
The strike lasted for more than nine months, affecting between four and five thousand workers. Violent encounters took place almost daily. The IA hired strikebreakers from outside the Bay Area and maintained a boardinghouse for them. Strikers waylaid nonunion workers and attacked them, both verbally and physically. Several unionists formed a “wrecking crew,” roaming the city at night and demolishing the work on nonunion sites. The Board of Supervisors initially sided with the unions and ordered police to withhold protection from nonunion work sites. The IA pushed the Police Commission and other public officials to jail strike leaders for conspiracy to riot, but San Francisco juries refused to convict those charged. As the strike wore on and as violence and vandalism continued, the IA hinted that a return to vigilantism might be necessary. In late October, a nonunion carpenter died of injuries received in a beating. The strike finally came to an end in mid-January, following the first formal agreement between union officials and contractors since 1921, but the agreement implicitly recognized the continuation of the open shop.(53)
The IA portrayed the molders' and carpenters’ strikes as unusual, reflecting the “gory record of a handful of defeated union gangsters who captured union leadership." Strikes, claimed the IA. had actually become unnecessary: “There is nothing reasonable that San Francisco unionism wants that it cannot have under the liberty and freedom of the American Plan." Constant vigilance was necessary, however, because “exploiters of labor, posing as leaders, are watching and working night and day for the chance to rule or ruin San Francisco’s industry and progress." The IA kept before the community the constant menace of “the labor bosses and racketeers” and the continuing need to “keep the way open for the future prosperity of industry and business."(54)
The Labor Council charged the IA with other activities in addition to those for which the organization so quickly look credit. According to the Labor Council, the IA “hired sluggers who are sent out armed with blackjacks to beat and maim inoffensive San Francisco workingmen for the terrible crime of exercising their American right to be identified with a labor union." Not limiting charges to rhetoric, the Labor Council produced affidavits from an IA inspector and from an employee of the detective agency retained by the IA. These men acknowledged that the head inspector of the IA had sent them to a job site to seek out a worker who “preached unionism to the non-union men." They “struck [him] over the head with blackjacks which each one of us then and there had in our possession.” Similar affidavits, apparently never published, implicated the IA’s detective agency in the shooting of the business agent of the Iron Molders’ Union and two other molder activists, one of whom died. To the Labor Council, the American Plan—which they sometimes referred to as the “un-American Plan”—represented only the “falsely labeled longing of a few arrogant men for absolutism in industry."(55)
Despite the success of the IA in instituting or maintaining the open shop in construction, the metal trades, on the waterfront, and elsewhere, most unions survived and many survived with contracts. The IA failed to establish a foothold in a number of industries. In 1931, after ten years of the American Plan, the largest local in the San Francisco Labor Council was Teamsters’ Local 85, with 2,700 members. The musicians’ local stood very close to that number with 2,500. The city’s four culinary unions claimed a total of 5,245 members; other large unions in 1931 included Typographical Local 21, the chauffeurs’ local (despite the open shop enforced by the IA in several leading taxi companies), the Alaska fishermen, federal employees, ferryboatmen, and carmen (streetcar workers). The Sailors’ Union of the Pacific, however, had only 250 members, and there were no longshoremen’s unions affiliated with the Labor Council. Membership in construction trades unions had fallen drastically. The heart of the city’s economy—the waterfront, food processing, iron and steel, construction—was under the American Plan.(56)
Waterfront interests, agricultural processing firms, and those companies that combined both by shipping Hawaiian agricultural products had long taken prominent roles in the open-shop movement, both in the IA and in its predecessors. Because of the perishable nature of some of their products and because of the central importance of water transportation to the processing and distribution of their products, they opposed unions and strikes more vigorously than most other segments of the city’s economy. These and other open-shop proponents, through the IA, helped maintain the open shop in construction when many contractors expressed willingness to continue union-shop arrangements. By keeping unions weak or on the defensive throughout the city, open-shop advocates felt that they reduced the political power of unions and thus protected themselves from the political pressures that had aided union organizing during the heyday of the Union Labor party. Open-shop advocates elected some sympathetic city officials but never dominated city government.(57) When the IA finally suffered defeat in 1934, it was primarily because of political changes a continent away, over which the business community of San Francisco could exercise little influence.
The growth and development of labor unions and employers’ associations over the period from 1880 to 1931 display a number of common elements. First, and so obvious as to scarcely require mention, is the emergence and development of organization as the basis for labor relations. After 1901, no employer group publicly denounced the concept of unionization itself, and no labor group suggested that employers ought not to join with one another. Conflict occurred not over the notion of organization but over the aims and conduct of the organizations. Both unions and employer groups recognized the benefits of organization, and both pursued the concentration of power and the centralization of decision making that organization made possible. Although slow to develop strong associations, employers ultimately proceeded further in the direction of centralization than did unions.
Jealous guardianship of local autonomy often formed the shoals on which labor central bodies foundered, notably on the waterfront. The Labor Council, largest and most visible central body in the city, had virtually no leverage over its members except the power of persuasion. A local that chose not to accept the advice of the Labor Council could not be forced to do so—witness the action of the Riggers and Stevedores in 1919 when the Labor Council urged them to abide by their own constitution. The Building Trades Council had much more power, but only over those unions in the construction industry. By contrast, citywide employers’ associations on several occasions required employers to lock out their employees even though the employers preferred not to do so, for example the draymen in 1901 or some specialty contractors in 1921 and 1926. “The autonomy of each trade,” a fundamental AFL principle, translated in practice into a more decentralized structure among unions than existed among employers, especially after 1921.
Centralization also meant, at times, the extension of disputes to larger arenas in an effort to mobilize more resources than one’s opponent. The City Front Federation strike in 1901 and, later, the general strike of 1934 provide examples of such broadening from the union side, and the activities of the Citizens’ Alliance and the Industrial Association supply others from the side of the employers.
Within these general parameters of an acceptance of organization, the concentration of power, and the centralization of decision making, a variety of other patterns assume importance. A crucial one has to do with willingness—or unwillingness—to engage in conflict. In some instances, especially in industries with many small-scale entrepreneurs, success in achieving accommodation seemed to breed more of the same, for example, the close relationship between the teamsters and draymen both before and after the conflict of 1901.
In other industries, a high degree of concentration of decision making— either through monopolistic or oligopolistic corporations or powerful employers’ associations—seemed to encourage conflict as employers calculated their abilities to stockpile materials, hire strikebreakers and guards, and outlast the workers. San Francisco Labor Council leaders, after 1901, tried to avoid conflict and seek accommodation and repeatedly counseled new unions not to take risks. When conflict developed, both sides often justified their positions in terms broader than those of the immediate dispute at hand. Both, during the 1920s especially, accused each other of arrogance and narrow self-interest; both presented their position as the one best suited to advance the interest of the community. Such justification in terms of the “public interest” reflects a pattern that goes back beyond the 1920s, to 1901 at least and perhaps before.
Both sides in time of conflict understood the central importance of mobilizing the power of the government on their side, and of denying that ally to the other. Throughout the period from 1901 onward, labor in San Francisco rejected the dictum to avoid politics. San Francisco unions instead undertook active attempts to control—or at least to neutralize—the power of city government. Employers, too, understood the importance of city government, and the most dramatic conflict of the period, the strike of 1901, came when employers successfully mobilized city police in protection of strikebreakers.(58)
41. Knight, Industrial Relations, pp. 332-347, 351 — 357; Chamber of Commerce Activities, March 15, 1917, p. 53; ibid., May 17, 1917, p. 101; ibid.. May 24, 1917, p. 104; ibid., June 7, 1917, p. 1; ibid., July 19, 1917, p. 158; ibid., Aug. 2, 1917, p. 171; ibid., Aug. 30, 1917, pp. 200—201; ibid., Sept. 27, 1917, p. 231; ibid., May 30, 1918, p. 162; ibid., July 18, 1918, p. 225.
42. Ryan, Industrial Relations, p. 137 ; Ohlson, “History of the San Francisco Labor Council," pp. 100-101; Francis, “History of Labor on the San Francisco Waterfront,” pp. 147-148, 181 — 182; Paul Scharrenberg, “The San Francisco Longshore," typed manuscript, 1920, Scharrenberg Manuscript Collection, Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley; “The Waterfront,” Labor Clarion, Dec. 3, 1920, p. 8; ibid., July 2, 1920, p. 10.
43. Ohlson, “History of the San Francisco Labor Council,” pp. 99 — 100.
44. Kazin, “Barons of Labor,” ch. 11; Ryan, Industrial Relations, pp. 137-166; Cross, A History of the Labor Movement in California, pp. 251 — 252.
45. The information on financial contributions is from a binder in the Labor Council Manuscripts Collection, Bancroft Library, “Industrial Association” file, car-ton 10. I he binder, not identified by title, contains fifty pages of names of companies and individuals with sums of money after each name. The dollar amounts listed for some appear in an anonymous mimeographed report on the disputes between the Industrial Association and the Iron Molders: ibid. In 1925, the Labor Council wrote letters to all the banks cited on the list, asking if the sum indicated was correct. Several banks waffled or denied in their replies. Another letter went to the full list of contributors. Rudolph Spreckels, an opponent of the Industrial Association from its origin, replied: “I have made inquiry and find that under its former management the Merchants National Bank did contribute Si000.00 to the support of the Indus¬trial Association of San Francisco.” The general tone of the responses, however, was not to acknowledge a specific dollar amount nor to acknowledge memberships at all; some of the responses, however, did not deny either. A. E. Sbarboro, president of the Italian-American Bank, replied: “We are always ready to contribute to any¬thing which in our opinion will contribute to the development and general good of our community,” and F. L. Lipman, president of Wells Fargo Bank, replied: “Our consistent policy is strongly to favor the prosperity of our State and City and that of all our citizens.” The “Hawaiian interests” are separated from the others in the list and included, in addition to C&H Sugar. Alexander and Baldwin ($10,000), American Factors ($10,000). Hawaiian Commercial and Sugar Company ($10,000), Matson Navigation ($10.000), and Welch and Company ($10,000). The list also includes the “Industrial Finance Committee” of thirteen, including Frank B. Anderson, chairman of the Bank of California; William H. Crocker of Crocker Bank; Herbert Fleishhacker of the Anglo and London Paris National Bank; F. L. Lipman of Wells Fargo Bank; William Roth of Matson Navigation; Paul Shoup of the Southern Pacific Railroad; B. F. Schlesinger of the Emporium, the city’s largest department store; and James Tyson of the Charles Nelson Company, a lumber and shipping concern. See also Ryan, Industrial Relations, pp. 167-175; American Plan (San Francisco), Oct. 1923, p. 8; Katherine Scott, “The Industrial Association,” seminar paper, San Francisco State University, 1979, pp. 20—24.
46. Some files of the Industrial Association are apparently in the possession of the San Francisco Employers’ Council, but efforts to secure access to them have been to no avail; most of its files were destroyed. A list of all directors is thus far incomplete, missing some of the early years. For directors and other officers, see American Plan, Jan. 1923, p. 6; ibid., Oct. 1923, p. 8; ibid., Jan. 1924, pp. 7 — 8; ibid., an. 1925, p. 7; and in virtually every issue beginning in 1925. We estimate that we found about 90 percent of all directors and officers.
47. For examples of the activities of leading figures, see the information on Atholl McBean in National Cyclopedia of American Biography 55 (1974):72—73; Who's Who in America 18 (1934 —1935): 1587; or that on Wallace Alexander, in Who's Who in America 16 (1930-1931): 164; ibid. 18 (1934-1935): 163; Who's Who in Commerce and Industry: 1936 (Chicago, 1936), p. 12; or that on Colbert Coldwell in National Cyclopedia of American Biography 53 (1971):624. See also Who's Who in America 16 (1930 —1931): 1249, 1303, 2394; ibid. 18 (1934-1935): 1326, 2134; Who's Who in Commerce and Industry: 1936, pp. 356, 543, 602, 852, 1049; National Cyclopedia of American Biography 27 (1939):368; ibid. 37 (1951):494-495; ibid. 43 (1961):584; ibid. 48 (1965):614—615; ibid. 49 (1966):80; American Plan, July 1924, p. 1. 48. American Plan, July 1922, pp. 2-4; ibid., Oct. 1923, pp. 6-8; ibid., Sept. 1926, p. 1; ibid., Dec. 1926, pp. 1-3; ibid., Jan./Feb. 1927, p. 3; ibid., Jan./Feb. 1929, pp. 1 — 3; ibid., Dec. 1931, p. 6; Industrial Association of San Francisco, San Francisco: A City That Achieved Freedom (San Francisco, 1931); Ryan, Industrial Relations, pp. 173-175.
49. American Plan, July 1922, pp. 2-4; ibid., Oct. 1923, pp. 6-7; ibid., Sept. 1926, p. 1; ibid., Dec. 1926, pp. 1-3; ibid., Jan./Feb. 1927, p. 3; ibid., Jan./Feb. 1929, pp. 1-3; ibid., Dec. 1931, p. 6; Industrial Association of San Francisco, A City That Achieved Freedom.
50. Ryan, Industrial Relations, pp. 173-175; Industrial Association of San Francisco, A City That Achieved Freedom; American Plan, Dec. 1931, p. 3; ibid., Oct. 1923, p. 2.
51. “Industrial Association’’ file, carton 10, Labor Council Manuscript Collection, Bancroft Library.
52. American Plan Progress, Oct. 25, 1926; American Plan, Jan./Feb. 1927, pp. 1 — 3; Eric Levy, “The 1926 San Francisco Carpenters’ Strike,” New Labor Review 6 (1984): 12 — 26, esp. 15.
53. Ibid.; Ryan, Industrial Relations, pp. 191 — 193; Ryan dates the end of the strike in December, but the agreement was not signed until January.
54. American Plan, June/July 1928, pp. 1 — 3; ibid., Nov. 1925, pp. 1 — 3; Jan./Feb. 1927, pp. 1 — 3; American Plan Progress (San Francisco), Oct. 25, 1926; copy of letter from Industrial Association Executive Finance Committee, Sept. 20, 1930, “Industrial Association” file, carton 10, Labor Council Manuscript Collection, Bancroft Library.
55. “Industrial Association” file, carton 10, Labor Council Manuscript Collection, Bancroft Library: open letter to Albert Boynton, Dec. 11, 1924; “To the Merchants of San Francisco,” June 1, 1926; open letter to the public, April 9, 1926; “To the Contributors of the Industrial Association,” Oct. 31, 1925; materials and affidavits on the molders’ strike. One informant, aligned with the employers’ side rather than the unions, characterized the Industrial Association as “a rough bunch.”
56. “Affiliated Unions and Delegates,” carton 23, Labor Council Manuscript Collection, Bancroft Library; American Plan, Oct. 1922, p. 2.
57. Industrial Association of San Francisco, A City That Achieved Freedom.
58. The general strike of 1934 resulted from a similar use of police power.