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Showing 1 through 3 of 3 records.
2006 - American Studies Association Words: 429 words || 
1. Peterson, Larry. "Model Industrial Citizens or Free American Workers? Pullman, Labor, and the Lability of Photographic Meaning" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Studies Association, <Not Available>. 2020-02-27 <>
Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Abstract: One of the best known photographs in American labor history depicts a line of workmen standing in front of the main gate to the Pullman Car Works in Chicago, Illinois. It was taken in the late nineteenth century and has long been assumed to show members of the American Railway Union during the Pullman strike of 1894. It was used as the source for a newspaper illustration during the strike, and in the twentieth century was interpreted as an early historical example of the genre of strike picket line photographs. It has thus acquired symbolic meaning as a visual representation of American workers exercising their rights as free citizens through organizing a union and striking against a tyrannical employer. The photograph remained known through a copy in the Pullman collection of the Chicago Public Library. While some conclusions about it could be drawn from internal visual evidence, it was accompanied by no written documentation, and especially no information as to its source, date, or specific subject. How does a photograph acquire meaning without written documentation or at least some oral tradition to identify and explain it? Can a photograph be interpreted when little or nothing is known about it? Photographs without documentation become free-floating, once they are separated from their original context, and can acquire meanings based on plausibility or speculation. Under some circumstances, these undocumented meanings can take on a life of their own and become accepted as true. The paper will analyze this photograph and its uses after the 1894 Pullman strike, trace it back to its original context in the early 1890s, where it served an entirely different purpose, and explain how it came to symbolize something it did not depict, while its original subject was completely forgotten. Particular attention will be paid to the conflict between capital and labor over visualizations of modern industrial society and the role of the press and later historiography as intermediaries in adopting and assigning meaning to photographic images. The paper will address the question of visualizations of American citizenship, as well as the invisibility of immigrant nationalities, even in an example, like Pullman, where some 70 percent of the population was foreign-born, but also how adaptation of this photograph’s basic form offered a means to incorporate many nationalities visually in later labor organizations. This photograph has played a surprisingly long role in interpretations of urban reform and labor conflict. While Pullman’s workers lost the 1894 strike, in some ways they won the contest over photographic visualizations of it through a photograph that ironically does not even depict the strike.

2012 - American Studies Association Annual Meeting Words: 306 words || 
2. Murolo, Priscilla. "The Forces of Disorder: Indian Fighters Confront the Pullman Strike" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Studies Association Annual Meeting, Puerto Rico Convention Center and the Caribe Hilton., San Juan, Puerto Rico, <Not Available>. 2020-02-27 <>
Publication Type: Internal Paper
Abstract: The massacre at Wounded Knee in 1890 and the Pullman strike of 1894 are among the most famous events in U.S. history. Virtually nothing is known, however, about the military history that links these two events. There are numerous connections. The Seventh Cavalry Regiment, which perpetrated the Wounded Knee massacre, also spearheaded the Pullman strike’s suppression in Chicago. General Nelson Miles commanded both the Chicago campaign and the massive mobilization of troops that led to Wounded Knee. Generals Wesley Merritt and Elwell Otis, who had earlier built reputations as “Indian fighters” oversaw the U.S. Army’s suppression of the Pullman strike as it spread westward from Chicago.

Most significant, the records that these men and their comrades left behind reveal surprising continuities in their attitudes toward the Army’s targets at Wounded Knee and in the Pullman strike. Mostly, these continuities are couched in stereotypes: repeated images of Lakota Indians and Pullman strikers as bedraggled, confused, stealthy, dangerous and fundamentally different from the civilization the Army represents. Sometimes, however, the comparisons are drawn in very explicit terms. As the Seventh Cavalry’s medical officer wrote to his wife during the Pullman strike, for example: “I presume that when all the trouble is over Gen’l Miles with have [a] Grand Review; to let these Chicago indians [sic] see what a ‘heap’ of soldiers our big chief Cleveland can send into the field.”

The paper I propose sketches the U.S. Army’s history with respect to Wounded Knee and the Pullman strike and analyzes the ways in which commanders and troops understood the largely immigrant working class they confronted. My purpose is to explore connections between the history of class conflict and the history of empire, as seen in the Army’s conflations of strikers and unruly colonial subjects.

2015 - Southern Political Science Association Words: 96 words || 
3. Mink, Joseph. "Visions of the City: Architecture and Citizenship in the work of Daniel Burnham, George Pullman, and Jane Addams" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Southern Political Science Association, Hyatt Regency, New Orleans, Louisiana, Jan 15, 2015 <Not Available>. 2020-02-27 <>
Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: In this paper competing visions of the relationship between material space and citizenship in the work of Daniel Burnham, George Pullman, and Jane Addams. Although Burnham, Pullman, and Addams mixed republican, liberal, and democratic commitments in their different visions of the city, I argue that each proposes an organization of material space designed to produce citizens (and appropriate forms of political participation). Specifically, I employ Burnham's Republicanism, Pullman's Liberalism, and Addams Democracy as Practice as means to interrogate the intersection of 'vision' and 'voice' as metaphors for evaluating the democratic potential of built environments.

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