International Workers' Day

International Workers' Day

International Workers' Day is also called Labor Day, and the people - May Day (May Day) celebrations, May Day. In Ukraine, according to the Labour Code, May 1 and 2 - the weekend.

Day in modern form originated in the late XIX century in the labor movement, which has nominated as one of the main demands the introduction of the eight-hour day instead of fifteen-.

At the beginning of the year 1886 at the Chicago McCormick agricultural machinery plant in 1400 was declared a lockout of workers. The strikers were dispersed by the police, and used McCormick also has scabs and services involved, including, and in clashes with protesting workers.

Since then, Chicago became the center of the proletarian struggle for the eight-hour day. The city operated branch of the Order of the Knights of Labor, the American Federation of trade unions, the Socialist Workers Party. However, the greatest influence in the city enjoyed working anarchists, whose leaders were Albert Parsons, August Spies, formerly active functionaries of trade unions, which have come to the libertarian movement, disappointed in legal political activity, realizing that the elections, the political struggle did not really give workers. They searched for new methods of resistance to capitalist exploitation of the working class and state oppression. Their main goal has now become a basic anarchist principle demands the destruction of the state and capitalism, that is, coercion and exploitation of the working class. Uncompromising and resolute in the fight to the anarchists began to attract more and more new workers. Anarchists involved in the organization of the majority of strikes in the Midwest, helping the workers, regardless of their affiliation to the different political parties and unions.

May 1, 1886 completely stopped all rail traffic through the city, closed warehouse, station and maintenance facilities, stopped industry: engineering, ironworks, wood, furniture, slaughterhouses and meat-packing, loading operations were suspended. The same day, in the newspaper "Mail" came away with the requirement Parsons and Spies - "the main organizers of disorder." Authorities needed only a pretext to crack down on workers' activists, who did not have to wait long. As noted above, at the beginning of the year 1886 at the Chicago McCormick farm machinery plant was declared a lockout, and the strikers were dispersed by the police, were involved in strike-breakers. These events, in fact, gave rise to the subsequent tragic events, in whose memory is celebrated on May Day workers around the world.

Events took a dramatic turn on May 3-4 and made history, titled "Mutiny on Sennoy market." The first day of laid-off workers from the factory McCormick staged a rally, which was addressed by August Spies. During clashes provoked workers with strikebreakers police opened fire on the workers. Six people were killed and many wounded. The same evening, in leaflets were distributed calling to gather for a protest rally against police terror, and, in addition, calling the people to revolt.

The next day at Haymarket Square gathered from two to three thousand people. Speakers August Spies, Albert Parsons and Samuel Fielden denounced the policy entrepreneurs, perpetrators, particularly in the lockout of forty or fifty thousand workers of the city. Police arrived unexpectedly outfit, despite the fact that the mayor of the city, just left the area, police captain assured that its intervention is required (with the mayor himself, and gave permission for itself before the rally, so it was quite official). However, the police officer demanded to immediately stop the rally. Fielden said that "our peace rally", the police began to advance. At this point, someone threw a bomb at police officers, one of whom was killed, fifty to seventy wounded. In response, the police opened fire on demonstrators, beat and shot indiscriminately men, women and children.

To this day do not know who made the bomb and threw it: whether it was sent by an agent provocateur, or someone of their own, not to the extent determined. One way or another, but as a result of an open "vigilante" shooting wounded dozens (from an estimated one hundred and sixty, on the other - two hundred or more) people were killed and eleven. This incident gave rise to inspiring the anti-labor campaign across the country began mass arrests and searches: police bully workers' clubs, printing, without any orders to break into the apartment, arrested the "suspicious." Hundreds of people were arrested and tortured, forced to give false testimony and report. After a few days, most have been released.

Albert Parsons, August Spies, Eugene Schwab, Oscar heaven, Adolph Fischer, George Engel, Samuel Fielden and Louis Ling - anarchists, labor leaders in Chicago (it's worth noting that five of them were immigrants from Germany, and only one - a U.S. citizen ) - were brought to justice. They were charged with the murder of a policeman during a demonstration (or rather, they were charged that the killer acted impressed by their speeches, and the jury was instructed: like killing campaign workers for the union to protect their rights.) Parsons managed to escape from the police, but by the beginning of the court, he gave up, wanting to share the fate of his comrades. The trial lasted about a month. No proof of their guilt at trial was presented, but the jury they were found guilty of a crime. Oscar heaven received fifteen years in prison, all the rest - were sentenced to death (Samuel Fildenu and Eugene Schwab later commuted to life imprisonment).

November 11, 1887 Spies, Parsons, Fischer and Engel, singing the "Marseillaise" went to the gallows and were hanged. Ling, also sentenced to death, committed suicide in prison, blowing mouth to smuggle him a miniature explosive device disguised as a cigar. Three survivors were pardoned in 1893 by Governor of Illinois, for the reason that all of the "Chicago Eight" was innocent of their alleged crimes. In this case, the media reported on the likely explosion of artist May 4 - Shnaubelte police agent (whether he is the executor of explosion, or is it just speculation - had still not found.) In the same year died in the struggle for the rights of the workers, was erected at their grave monument, called the "Martyrs of the Haymarket Square."

Cruel and unjust sentence sparked protests both in the U.S. and around the world. Especially active were working in England, Holland, Russia, Italy, France and Spain. Curiously, in Germany (the majority of prisoners were just Germans) protests were banned by the authorities.

It is in memory of the executed II International Congress of Paris (July 1889) announced on 1 May Day solidarity of workers around the world and suggested that the annual observance of his demonstrations with social demands.

After the October Revolution of 1917 and became an official holiday in the Soviet Union: the day held a demonstration of workers and military parades (the first parade of the Red Army was in 1918 on Khodynka). On the second day, usually in the country were "May Day" - massive celebrations in nature.

In the era of "developed socialism" in the Soviet May Day demonstrations were held different meanings. In the May Day workers of the USSR "express their solidarity with the revolutionary struggle of the working people of the capitalist countries, the national liberation movement, are determined to give everything for peace and for the building of a communist society."

Organized a colony of workers marched through the main streets of towns and villages for marches and political direction of the music from the speakers sounded welcoming speakers and political slogans, from the stands, usually installed near the main office buildings, protesters greeted the Communist Party leaders, government officials, leaders of manufacture, veterans, freemen. Conducted broadcast on local television and radio channels. Home demonstration of the country held each year on the Red Square in Moscow and was broadcast by the central TV channels, padded frame demonstrations in other major cities. Participation in May Day demonstrations for workers was mandatory and controlled management of the enterprises.

May 1 was the "massive holiday" in the USSR. And it really was a holiday for workers who received an additional two days off. May celebrations were held across the country. On this day, people walked together to the demonstration with banners and flowers. May Day was a mandatory attribute of the holiday table.

On the first of May is closely related occurrence Mayday meetings. This collection of the entire family or for a picnic. Picnics are held the 1st and 2nd of May. This tradition of celebrating outdoors was invented in the Soviet Union and preserved to this day. Initially, in the pre-revolutionary Russia, May Day was an illegal meeting of workers, arrange for the city in the day on May 1. May Day persecuted tsarist police. In Soviet times, May Day became more a form of collective recreation.

May 1, 1990 the last time the official May Day demonstration. May 1, 1991 on Red Square rally organized by the Moscow Federation of Trade Unions and the Association of Free Trade Unions, against the increase in prices.

Since 1992, popularly favorite holiday was renamed "Labour Day". In Ukraine, which became independent at the time, the festival has retained its original name.
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