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Article: Mary Harris Jones
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{{Infobox person
| name = Mother Jones
| image = Mother Jones 1902-11-04.jpg
| image_size = 180px
| caption =
| birth_date = {{birth date|1837|8|1}}
| birth_place = [[Cork (city)|Cork]], [[County Cork]], [[Ireland]]
| death_date = {{death date and age|1930|11|30|1837|5|1|mf=y}}
| death_place = [[Adelphi, Maryland|Adelphi]], [[Maryland]], [[United States]]
| occupation = [[Union organizer|Labor]] and [[community organizing|community organizer]]
| party = [[Social Democratic Party (United States)|Social Democratic Party]] and [[Socialist Party of America]]
| spouse =
| parents =
| children =
'''Mary Harris "Mother" Jones''' (August 1, 1837 – November 30, 1930), born in [[Cork (city)|Cork]], [[Ireland]], was a prominent [[United States|American]] [[Union organizer|labor]] and [[community organizing|community organizer]], who helped coordinate major strikes and co-founded the [[Industrial Workers of the World]].
She worked as a teacher and dressmaker but after her husband and four children all died of [[yellow fever]] and her workshop was destroyed in a fire in 1871 she began working as an organizer for the [[Knights of Labor]] and the [[United Mine Workers]] union.
She was a very effective speaker, punctuating her speeches with stories, audience participation, humor and dramatic stunts. From 1897 (when she was 60) she was known as Mother Jones and in 1902 she was called "the most dangerous woman in America" for her success in organizing mine workers and their families against the mine owners. In 1903, upset about the lax enforcement of the child labor laws in the Pennsylvania mines and silk mills, she organized a Children's March from Philadelphia to the home of then president [[Theodore Roosevelt]] in New York.
The magazine ''[[Mother Jones (magazine)|Mother Jones]]'', established in 1970, is named after her.
In the 1989–90 [[Pittston Coal strike]] the wives and daughters of the miners organized themselves as the "Daughters of Mother Jones" and represented the strikers to the press.
== Biography ==
She was born '''Mary Harris''', the daughter of a [[Roman Catholic]] tenant farmer, Richard Harris and his wife Ellen Cotter, on the northside of [[Cork (city)|Cork]] city, [[Ireland]].<ref name=cork>Day by Day in Cork, Sean Beecher, Collins Press, Cork, 1992</ref> Some recent materials list her birthday as August 1, 1837, although she claimed her birthdate to be May 1, 1830. Her claims to an earlier date may have been an appeal to her grandmotherly image. The date of May 1 was possibly chosen symbolically, to represent the national labor holiday and anniversary of the [[Haymarket affair]].<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Haymarket Square Riot | |date= |accessdate=2010-09-06}}</ref>
=== Formative years ===
Jones emigrated with her family to Canada when she was roughly fourteen or fifteen years old.<ref name="Eric Arnesen 2002">Eric Arnesen, "A Tarnished Icon," ''Reviews in American History'' 30, no. 1 (2002): 89</ref> The young Mary acquired a Catholic education in [[Toronto]] before her family moved to the United States.<ref name="Eric Arnesen 2002"/> She became a teacher in a convent in [[Monroe, Michigan|Monroe]], [[Michigan]]. After becoming tired of her assumed profession, she moved first to [[Chicago]] and later to [[Memphis, Tennessee|Memphis]], where she married George E. Jones, a member and organizer of the National Union of Iron Moulders<ref name="Religion and Radical">Religion and Radical Politics: An Alternative Christian Tradition in the United States, Robert H. Craig, Temple University Press, Philadelphia, 1992</ref>, later the [[International Molders and Foundry Workers Union of North America]], in 1861.<ref name="Russell E. Smith 1967">Russell E. Smith, "March of the Mill Children", ''The Social Service Review'' 41, no. 3 (1967): 299</ref> She eventually opened a dress shop in Memphis on the eve of the Civil War.<ref name="Eric Arnesen 2002"/>
There were two turning points in her life. The first, and most tragic one, was the loss of her husband George and their four children (all under the age of five) during a [[yellow fever]] epidemic in [[Tennessee]]. After her entire family succumbed to the disease, she returned to Chicago to begin another dressmaking business.<ref>ric Arnesen, "A Tarnished Icon," ''Reviews in American History'' 30, no. 1 (2002): 89</ref> Then, four years later, she lost her hard-earned home, shop and possessions in the [[Great Chicago Fire]]. This second loss catalyzed an even more fundamental transformation: she turned to the nascent labor movement and joined the [[Knights of Labor]], a predecessor to the [[Industrial Workers of the World]] (IWW or "Wobblies").<ref name=Dangerous>Mother Jones: The Most Dangerous Woman in America, Elliott Gorn</ref> The [[Haymarket Riot]] of 1886 and the fear of [[anarchism]] and [[revolution]] incited by union organizations led to the rapid demise of the Knights of Labor. Once the Knights ceased to exist, Mary Jones became largely affiliated with the [[United Mine Workers]]. With the UMW, she frequently led strikers in picketing and encouraged the striking workers to stay on strike when the management brought in strike-breakers and militias.<ref name="Russell E. Smith 1967"/> She strongly believed that "working men deserved a wage that would allow women to stay home to care for their kids."<ref>[[Rod Dreher|Dreher, Rod]] (2006-06-05) [ All-American Anarchists], ''[[The American Conservative]]''</ref>
As another source of her transformation into an organizer, biographer Elliott Gorn draws out her early Roman Catholic connection – including bringing to light her relationship to her estranged brother, Father William Richard Harris, Roman Catholic teacher, writer, pastor, and Dean of the Niagara Peninsula (in St Catharine's) in the Diocese of Toronto, who was "among the best-known clerics in [[Ontario]]."<ref name=Dangerous /> It is likely that Mary Jones’ political views were also shaped by the 1877 railroad strike, Chicago’s labor movement, and the [[Haymarket Riot]] and depression of 1886.<ref name="Eric Arnesen 2002"/> Active as an organizer and educator in strikes throughout the country at the time, she was particularly involved with the UMW and the [[Socialist Party of America]]. As a [[union organizer]], she gained prominence for organizing the wives and children of striking workers in demonstrations on their behalf. She became known as "the most dangerous woman in America," a phrase coined by a West Virginia district attorney, Reese Blizzard, in 1902, at her trial for ignoring an injunction banning meetings by striking miners. "There sits the most dangerous woman in America", announced Blizzard. "She crooks her finger—twenty thousand contented men lay down."
Mary Jones was ideologically separated from many of the other female activists of the pre-[[Nineteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution|Nineteenth Amendment]] days due to her aversion to [[female suffrage]]. She was quoted as saying that “You don’t need the vote to raise hell!”<ref>Russell E. Smith, "March of the Mill Children", ''The Social Service Review'' 41, no. 3 (1967): 298</ref> Her opposition to women taking an active role in politics was based on her belief that the neglect of motherhood was a primary cause of juvenile delinquency.
Jones became known as a charismatic and effective speaker throughout her career.<ref name="Mari Boor Tonn 1996">Mari Boor Tonn, "Militant Motherhood: Labor's Mary Harris 'Mother' Jones," ''Quarterly Journal of Speech'' 81, no. 1 (1996): 2</ref> She was a storyteller, who would liven her rhetoric with real and folk-tale characters, punctuate with participation from audience members, flavor it with passion, and include humor-ridden methods to rile up the crowd such as profanity, name-calling, and wit. Occasionally she would include props, visual aids, and dramatic stunts for effect.<ref name="Mari Boor Tonn 1996"/> By the age of sixty, she had effectively assumed the persona of Mother Jones by claiming to be older than she actually was, wearing outdated black dresses and referring to the male workers that she supported as ‘her boys’. The first reference to her in print as ‘Mother Jones’ was in 1897.<ref name="Eric Arnesen 2002"/>
=== Children's Crusade ===
In 1901, the workers who were employed in the Pennsylvania silk mills went on strike, many of them being young female workers who were demanding they be paid adult wages.<ref name="Bonnie Stepenoff 1901">Bonnie Stepenoff, "Keeping it in the Family: Mother Jones and the Pennsylvania Silk Strike of 1900–1901,” ''Labor History'' 38, no. 4 (1997): 446</ref> John Mitchell, the president of the UMWA, brought Mother Jones to north-east [[Pennsylvania]] in the months of February and September to encourage unity among the striking workers. To do so, she encouraged the wives of the workers to organize into a militia, who in turn would wield brooms, beat on tin pans and shout “Join the union!”<ref name="Bonnie Stepenoff 1901"/> Jones believed that these wives had an important role to play as the nurturers and motivators of the striking men, but not as fellow workers. She made claim that the young girls working in the mills were being robbed and demoralized.<ref name="Bonnie Stepenoff 1901"/> To enforce worker solidarity, she travelled to the silk mills in [[New Jersey]] and returned to Pennsylvania to report that the conditions she observed were far superior. She stated that “the [[child labor]] law is better enforced for one thing and there are more men at work than seen in the mills here.”<ref name="Bonnie Stepenoff 1901"/> In response to the strike, mill owners also divulged their side of the story. They claimed that if the workers still insisted on a wage scale, they would not be able to do business while paying adult wages and would be forced to close down.<ref name="autogenerated1900">Bonnie Stepenoff, "Keeping it in the Family: Mother Jones and the Pennsylvania Silk Strike of 1900–1901,” ''Labor History'' 38, no. 4 (1997): 448</ref> Even Jones herself encouraged the workers to accept a settlement. Although she agreed upon a settlement which sent the young girls back to the mills, she continued to fight child labor for the remainder of her life.<ref name="autogenerated1900"/>
In 1903 Jones organized children, who were working in mills and mines at the time, to participate in the "Children's Crusade", a march from [[Kensington, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania]] to [[Oyster Bay (town), New York|Oyster Bay]], [[New York]], the home of President [[Theodore Roosevelt]], with banners demanding "We want to go to School and not the mines!" As Mother Jones noted that many of the children at union headquarters had missing fingers and other disabilities, she attempted to get newspaper publicity about the conditions in Pennsylvania regarding child labor. However, the mill owners held stock in essentially all of the newspapers. When the newspaper men informed her that they could not advertise the facts about child labor because of this, she remarked “Well, I’ve got stock in these little children and I’ll arrange a little publicity.”<ref>Russell E. Smith, "March of the Mill Children", ''The Social Service Review'' 41, no. 3 (1967): 300</ref> Permission to see President Roosevelt was denied by his secretary and it was suggested that Jones address a letter to the president requesting a visit with him. Even though Mother Jones wrote a letter for such permission, she never received an answer.<ref>Russell E. Smith, "March of the Mill Children", ''The Social Service Review'' 41, no. 3 (1967): 303</ref> Though the President refused to meet with the marchers, the incident brought the issue of child labor to the forefront of the public agenda. Mother Jones's Children's Crusade was described in detail in the 2003 non-fiction book, ''[[Kids on Strike!]]''.
In the [[Paint Creek-Cabin Creek strike of 1912]] in [[West Virginia]], Jones arrived in June 1912, speaking and organizing through a shooting war between United Mine Workers members and the private army of the mine owners. Martial law in the area was declared and rescinded twice before Jones was arrested on February 13, 1913, brought before a military court. Accused to conspiring to commit murder among other charges, she refused to recognize the legitimacy of her [[court martial]]. She was sentenced to twenty years in the state penitentiary. During house arrest at [[Mother Jones Prison|Mrs. Carney's Boarding House]], she acquired a dangerous case of pneumonia. After 85 days of confinement, her release coincided with Indiana Senator [[John Worth Kern]] initiating a Senate investigation into the conditions in the local coal mines. [[Mary Lee Settle]] paints an accurate and compelling portrait of Jones at this time in her novel ''The Scapegoat'' (1978).
A few months later Jones was in [[Colorado]], helping to organize the coal miners there. Once again she was arrested, served some time in prison and was escorted from the state in the months leading up to the [[Ludlow Massacre]]. After the massacre she was invited to [[Standard Oil]]'s headquarters at [[26 Broadway]] to meet face-to-face with [[John D. Rockefeller, Jr.]], a meeting that prompted Rockefeller to visit the Colorado mines and introduce long-sought reforms.
=== Later years ===
[[File:Mother Jones 02.jpg|thumb|right|Jones was denounced on the floor of the U.S. Senate as the "grandmother of all agitators."]]
By 1924, Mother Jones was in court again, this time facing charges of [[libel]], [[slander]] and [[sedition]]. In 1925, Charles A. Albert, publisher of the fledgling ''[[Chicago Times]]'', won a $350,000 judgment against the matriarch.
Mother Jones remained a union organizer for the UMW into the 1920s and continued to speak on union affairs almost until her death. She released her own account of her experiences in the labor movement as ''The Autobiography of Mother Jones'' (1925).
In her later years, Jones lived with her friends [[Adelphi, Maryland#History|Walter and Lillie May Burgess]], on their farm in what is now [[Adelphi, Maryland|Adelphi]], [[Maryland]]. She celebrated her self-proclaimed 100th birthday there, on May 1, 1930 and was filmed making a statement for a [[newsreel]]. She died at the age of 93 on November 30, 1930.<ref>Death Notice for Mother Mary Jones, ''The Washington Post'', Dec 2, 1930, pg. 3.</ref>
She is buried in the Union Miners Cemetery in [[Mount Olive, Illinois|Mount Olive]], [[Illinois]], alongside miners who died in the [[Battle of Virden]] in 1898.<ref>"Service Tomorrow for Mother Jones," ''The Washington Post'', Dec 2, 1930, pg. 12.</ref> She called these miners, killed in strike-related violence, "her boys."<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=U.S. Department of Labor – Labor Hall of Fame – Mary Harris "Mother" Jones | |date= |accessdate=2010-09-06}}</ref>
[[File:Workers Memorial Day poster.jpg|[[United States Department of Labor]] poster, 2010|thumb]]
Amidst the tragic, and sometimes fatal, violence directed at early trade unionists, Mother Jones uttered words still invoked by union supporters more than a century later: "Pray for the dead and fight like hell for the living." <ref>{{Cite web|url= |title=Quotations from Mother Jones (#2) |accessdate=2011-10-14}}</ref> Already known as "the miners' angel,"{{Citation needed|date=December 2009}} when she was denounced on the floor of the [[United States Senate]] as the "grandmother of all agitators," she replied:
I hope to live long enough to be the great-grandmother of all agitators.{{Citation needed|date=December 2009}}
During the bitter 1989–90 Pittston Coal strike in Virginia, West Virginia and [[Kentucky]], the wives and daughters of striking coal miners, inspired by the still-surviving tales of Mother Jones' legendary work among an earlier generation of the region's coal miners, dubbed themselves the "Daughters of Mother Jones." They played a crucial role on the picket lines and in presenting the miners' case to the press and public.<ref>[ The Pittston Coal Strike<!-- bot-generated title -->] at</ref>
The magazine ''[[Mother Jones (magazine)|Mother Jones]]'' was established in the 1970s and quickly became the largest selling underground magazine of the decade.<ref>Michael Andrew Scully, "Would Mother Jones Buy 'Mother Jones'?," ''Public Interest'' 53, (1978): 100</ref> Each issue divulges information on the themes that were important to Jones herself, such as corporate corruption, political collapse, small-is-beautiful, communal living and feminism.{{Clarify|date=April 2010}}
Mary Harris "Mother" Jones Elementary School, in [[Adelphi, Maryland|Adelphi]], [[Maryland]], is named in her honor.<ref>[ Mary Harris "Mother" Jones Elementary School home page]</ref>
Students at [[Wheeling Jesuit University]] in [[West Virginia]] can apply to reside in Mother Jones House, an off-campus service house. Residents perform at least ten hours of [[community service]] each week and participate in community dinners and events.{{Citation needed|date=December 2009}}
To coincide with [[International Women's Day]] on 8 March 2010 a proposal was made by [[Ted Tynan|Councillor Ted Tynan]] for a plaque to be erected in Mary Harris Jones' native city of [[Cork (city)|Cork]] in Ireland. The proposal has been accepted by [[Cork City Council]].<ref>{{cite web|url= |title=Minutes Of Ordinary Meeting Of Cork City Council |format=PDF |date= |accessdate=2010-09-06}}</ref>
===Music and the arts===
In ''The American Songbag'', [[Carl Sandburg]] suggests that the "she" in "[[She'll Be Coming 'Round the Mountain]]" was a reference to Mother Jones and her travels to [[Appalachia]]n mountain coal mining camps promoting the unionization of the miners.<ref>Sandburg, Carl, ''The American Songbag''. 1st ed. NY: Harcourt Brace, 1927.</ref>
"The Death of Mother Jones", a song whose authorship is unknown, was first recorded by [[Gene Autry]] in 1931, in what may have been his first recording session.{{Citation needed|date=August 2009}}
"[[Union Maid]]", a song by [[Woody Guthrie]], calls for women to emulate Mother Jones by fighting for both women's rights and workers' rights.
"The most dangerous woman" a spoken word performance by indie folk singer/spoken word performer, [[Utah Phillips]], with music and backing vocals added to it by indie folk artist Ani Difranco, can be found on their collaborative album, "Fellow workers". The title refers to the moniker that President Theodore Roosevelt gave to Mother Jones, referring to her as, "The most dangerous woman in America", at the age of 83.
'The Spirit of Mother Jones' is a track on the 2010 'Abocurragh' album by the Irish singer/songwriter [[Andy Irvine (musician)|Andy Irvine]].
The title track of folk-roots duo Wishing Chair and Kara Barnard's 2002 album "Dishpan Brigade"<ref></ref> is about Jones and her role in the 1899–1900 miners' strike in Arnot, Pa.<ref></ref>
She is the title "woman" in Tom Russell's song "The Most Dangerous Woman in America", a commentary on the troubles of miners, which appeared on his 2009 album "Blood and Candle Smoke"<ref></ref> on the Shout Factory<ref></ref> label.
* ''The Autobiography of Mother Jones''. Chicago: Charles H. Kerr & Col, 1925.
* ''Mother Jones Speaks: Speeches and Writings of a Working-Class Fighter''. New York: Pathfinder Press, 1983, ISBN 0-87348-810-5
* ''Mother Jones and the March of the Mill Children''. Brookfield , CT: [[Penny colman|Colman, Penny]]. The Millbrook Press, 1994
==External links==
{{Portal|Organized labour}}
* [ DVD and virtual museum about Mother Jones]
* [ Mother Jones: biography by Sarah K. Horsley]
* [ Mother Jones Speaks: Speeches and Writings of a Working-Class Fighter]
* [ Free eBook of The Autobiography of Mother Jones]
*[ Free audio book of The Autobiography of Mother Jones at]
*[ Mother Jones at Find-A-Grave]
*[ Mother Jones Monument at GuidepostUSA]
*[ Mother Jones Plaque in Adelphi, MD]
{{Persondata <!-- Metadata: see [[Wikipedia:Persondata]]. -->
| NAME = Jones, Mother
| ALTERNATIVE NAMES = Jones, Mary Harris
| SHORT DESCRIPTION = [[United States|American]] [[Union organizer|labor]] and [[community organizing|community organizer]]
| DATE OF BIRTH = May 1, 1837
| PLACE OF BIRTH = [[Cork (city)|Cork]], [[County Cork]], [[Ireland]]
| DATE OF DEATH = November 30, 1930
| PLACE OF DEATH = [[Silver Spring, Maryland|Silver Spring]], [[Maryland]], [[United States]]
{{DEFAULTSORT:Jones, Mother}}
[[Category:1837 births]]
[[Category:1930 deaths]]
[[Category:American activists]]
[[Category:American labor leaders]]
[[Category:American labor unionists]]
[[Category:American memoirists]]
[[Category:American schoolteachers]]
[[Category:American socialists]]
[[Category:American Roman Catholics]]
[[Category:People from County Cork]]
[[Category:Child labor in the United States]]
[[Category:Children's rights activists]]
[[Category:Community organizers]]
[[Category:American people of Irish descent]]
[[Category:Irish emigrants to the United States (before 1923)]]
[[Category:Industrial Workers of the World leaders]]
[[Category:Members of the Socialist Party of America]]
[[Category:People from Kanawha County, West Virginia]]
[[Category:People from Monroe, Michigan]]
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Reporter Information
Reporter: JimmiXzS (anonymous)
Date: Thursday, the 13th of October 2016 at 02:37:31 PM
Status: Reported
Friday, the 7th of August 2015 at 09:04:52 PM #100383
Bradley (anonymous)


Thursday, the 13th of October 2016 at 02:37:31 PM #106386
JimmiXzS (anonymous)