July 31, 1899: “Union to Enforce Newsboys’ Strike”

Union to Enforce Newsboys’ Strike

News Sellers’ Organization Launched and Promises Are Already Given of Big Increase in Membership.

Allies Found in Newark

Boys Pledge Loyalty to the Boycott and Consider the Idea of Forming a Separate Union.

Big Mass Meeting Proposed
Effort Being Made to Get Cooper Union for Wednesday Night.

Organized newsboys and newsdealers will vigorously continue the fight against the yellow Evening Journal.

The News Sellers’ Union has been formally launched with more than a hundred members already enrolled, and its promoters predict that before the week is over it will have grown into a powerful organization that will include most of the real newsboys and dealers of the city. Members of it were jubilant to-day over their rousing start.

The union was formed at an enthusiastic meeting held last night in Gardner’s Hall, No. 21 Suffolk street. More than a hundred newsboys and many representative newsdealers were present. Patrick Cadley, representative of the West Side Newsdealers’ Association, which has declared and is enforcing a boycott against the yellow Evening Journal, presided over the meeting.

The plan of organization was proposed by James G. Neill, a newspaper vendor at the Bridge. Under it the city will be divided into districts, each to have a captain and executive committee. Three delegates from each district will compose the central committee, to be known as the Grand Union, presided over by a president.

It is the idea of the leaders to have this organization affiliated with other labor unions. The union boys will wear badges and will appeal to laborers to buy only from persons in the organization.

The officers of the organization are:—James G. Neill, president; “Racetrack” Higgins, of Brighton Beach, vice president; “Abe” Cutler, of Fulton street, recording secretary; Solomon Levy, financial secretary; David Ruben, of Bleecker street, treasurer, and Simon Levy, sergeant at arms. All parts of the city are represented on the board of officers.

Members of the union set to work with a will to-day to gain new members, and received promises that the roll would be swelled by the addition of scores of names when the next meeting occurs. An endeavor is being made to get Cooper Union for a mass meeting Wednesday night, in which the cause of the union will be taken up vigorously.

Nor will the organization of the boycott stop with New York. A delegation from Newark was at the meeting and pledges were given that the “newsies” of that city would see the boycott through until their terms are acceded to. There is a movement on foot in that city to-day to start a New Jersey union.

Thorough work is being done in Harlem to-day by the boys who are in sympathy with the new organization. A meeting will probably be held in a few days and a district union formed. Circulars are being widely distributed in that section denouncing the assertion that the strike is over and asking the public to exert its sympathy still in favor of the struggling lads.

Source: “Union to Enforce Newsboys’ Strike.” Evening Telegram, 31 July 1899, p. 3.