Title: Letter of 28 May 1919 from T. Murray to R. A. Rigg
Author: Murray, Thomas Joseph, 1875-1954
Source: Archives of Manitoba, MG 14 B 43, Richard Arthur Rigg, Descriptive List
Page 3 of 4

Transcription

R. A. R. -3-
striking at all but because it became possible that the
firemen in Winnipeg thought it necessary for them to
strike, the minds of some of our better citizens have
realized the necessity of taking such steps as will
prevent hereafter a recurrence of any such difficulty.
The thought was expressed that firemen and policemen
should always be so well treated that they would never
have any ground whatever for a strike.
It was to the disgrace of the newspapers
of Winnipeg that labor found it necessary to publish
its own paper to get out the facts. Perhaps I am biased,
but making allowance even for that, I don't think I ever
saw more dishonest campaign waged by the newspapers as
was wages against the strikers in this case, campaign
which was characterized by suppression of the truth as
well as suggestions of falsehood. After several days,
the Free Press, evidently realizing how much the newpaper
campaign was tending to aggravate the situtation, improved
its attitude very much. The Telegram was really bad
throughout. I have read the Tribune very little so cannot
say much about it.
The City Council as a whole, but particularly
the Mayor and Controllers Wallace and Gray, have in my
mind proven themselves incapables of the worst type. The
public place a great deal of responsibility upon the
Council although as I have said they cannot forgive the
firemen. I believe that as a consequence of the
difficulty a number of the members of the Council will
lose their official heads next election. The
public quickly forgets of course but certainly some of
those men have no business where they are. This was a
time when big men were needed but unfortunately we seem
to have an aggregation of "pin-heads". To me the feature
of the difficulty which has most unpleasant recollections
was the negotiations carried on between a sub-committee
of the general strike committee and a sub-committee of
the Citizens Committee of 100. Our sub-committee
consisted of McBride, Robinson, Tipping, Bob Russell,
Ringland (of the firemen), Miss Meakin and myself.
The sub-committee of the Committee of 100 consisted
of Rev. Dr. Patterson, Rev. Dr. Westwood, Judge Robson,
S. R. Tarr, A. E. Mott, Geo. N. Jackson, A. E. Crossin and Capt.
Robinson. The negotiations between these two committees
lasting from Sunday until Thursday really settled the
strike. They agreed upon all but one point, which was
the exclusion of the officers of the fire brigade from the
union on Senator Robertson's advice the men consented
to this. That is was possible for negotiations to be

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