The Shoeleather History Project

Stories from Hartford's Grassroots

Original Wobbly

I met the daughter of Pierce T. Wetter in August. Pierce was an original Wobbly. He was arrested in 1917 in a nationwide roundup of more than one hundred IWW … Continue reading

November 7, 2015 · 1 Comment

No Business as Usual: Vietnam War

On a cool and sunny fall day in Hartford, ten thousand people jammed into Bushnell Park with one goal: to stop the war in Vietnam. As the single largest protest … Continue reading

August 29, 2013 · 3 Comments

Hometown Nukes & Poison Gas

I went online today to see if I could buy a Gatling gun. It turns out there are at least five websites where the weapon can be purchased. One of … Continue reading

August 5, 2013 · Leave a comment

Peace Work with a Union Label

“While this war was on, you appropriated billions for the war. How much are you willing to appropriate for peace and for jobs?” When Michael Rosenberg challenged U.S. government priorities … Continue reading

May 14, 2013 · Leave a comment

The Shameful Legacy of Sam Colt

Some Hartford people are pretty desperate for heroes. What other explanation could there be for the recent attempts to glorify gunmaker Samuel Colt? ┬áHis 19th century factory is now a … Continue reading

May 3, 2013 · 3 Comments

One Big Union in Hartford

In a few rooms above Giolito’s Restaurant on Market Street, not too far from the Hartford Police Station, Sam Bernowsky hung the charter for the local branch of the Industrial … Continue reading

May 2, 2013 · Leave a comment

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The Shoeleather History Project