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|Named Person:||Harry Van Arsdale|
|Document Type:||Archival Material|
|All Authors / Contributors:||International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. Local no. 3 (New York, N.Y.)|
|Reproduction Notes:||Microfilm [s.l.] : Mathias and Carr, 26 microfilm reels.|
|Description:||26 microfilm reels.|
Minutes until 1909 were kept in bound books and were handwritten. The first set of minutes in this collection is a rare single year's set of minutes (July 9, 1901-July 1, 1902) from Local 20, the Cable Splicers, which merged with Local 3 in 1934. This book was handed over to Robert Reader by the widow of Phillip Reeves, Local 20's recording secretary. Minutes of Local 3 proper begin with the Executive Board meetings of May 1902. Regular Membership meetings' minutes start in May 1906.
There are gaps in the chronology of the collection, espcially the 1920's and 1930's. The Executive Board minutes document discussions of all major issues that are then brought up at Regular Membership meetings. Changes in the union's policy, bylaws and structures are considered by the Executive Board and then brought to the Membership. Developments in the electrical construction and in the electrical manufacturing industry are also regularly on the union agenda. Apprentices and new members are inducted into the union at Executive Board meetings; their names are listed at the beginning of each set of minutes. Appeals from other labor organizations and decisions on contributions are also noted in the Executive Board minutes.
Minutes of Regular Membership meetings may often contain reports of speeches made by politicians, Local or International officers, reports of membership activities and discussion of ongoing New York City or national organizing campaigns. Detailed records of all of Local 3's financial outlays have always been read at Regular Membership meetings. These financial records were filed as part of the Regular Membership minutes for 1927 and 1928 and for all years after 1942. These records have been separated from the collection and are on file at union headquarters.
Both the Executive Board and Regular Membership minutes of Local 3 document a long and outstanding record of trade union activity. Topics that these minutes cover include: the history of the construction industry in New York City since 1902; the development of militant industrial unionism in the electrical manufacturing industry; twentieth century labor solidarity and union building locally and nationally; the evolution of Local 3's "cradle to the grave" benefits plans; the establishment of workers' cooperative housing in Electchester; the development of educational programs for workers; and political processes and trade union activities. Especially noteworthy in these minutes is the record of the long and colorful career of Harry Van Arsdale, Jr., whose leadership of Local 3 is detailed from the early 1930's when he challenged the craft union leadership of Local 3, to the 1940's, when he led the union's industrial organizing drives, to the postwar period when he developed generous and far-sighted benefits plans to his role in the early 1980's as the ever-active elder statesman of labor.
- Van Arsdale, Harry, -- 1905-1986
- International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. -- Local no. 3 (New York, N.Y.)
- International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. -- Local 20 (New York, N.Y.)
- Electric industry workers -- Labor unions -- New York (N.Y.)
- Electric industry workers -- New York (State) -- New York
- Construction workers -- New York (State) -- New York