National Union of Dock Laborers

Born in Liverpool, England on January 21, 1876, Jim Larkin, more widely known as Big Jim by his cohorts, was an Irish unionist and staunch Marxist. Jim Larkin had very little formal education, which was common to many people growing up in the slums of Liverpool at the time, and worked a number of menial jobs in order to assist his family in making ends meet. He was married to Elizabeth Brown in 1903, eventually having four sons, further emphasizing his need to enact change within the world of Irish laborers.

Eventually, Mr. Larkin would secure a job as a foreman on the Liverpool docks, and due to his socialist beliefs, soon developed the common opinion that Irish workers were experiencing unfair treatment on the whole, which led to him joining the National Union of Dock Laborers. Read more: Jim Larkin | Wikipedia and James Larkin | Ireland Calling

In 1905, Mr. Larkin would become a union trade organizer, working the position full-time, but as his methods of protest were deemed to be too radical for the organization, the National Union of Dock Laborers chose to relocate him to Dublin, where he would continue his efforts.

After relocating to Dublin, Ireland, Jim Larkin founded the Irish Transport and General Workers Union in 1907, whose ultimate mission was to unite the Irish workers in the region, forming one powerful collective.

After heading a series of effective labor strikes, including the Dublin Lockout, for which 100,000 Irish Workers protested for nearly eight months, the Irish Transport and General Workers Union would fall apart. In 1914, after form the Irish Labor Party, Mr. Larkin went to the United States in order to raise money in an effort to protest the British. While his time in the United States was initially fruitful, Jim Larkin would go on to be convicted of criminal anarchy and communism and eventually deported back to Dublin, Ireland.

During his time in Dublin, Mr. Larkin formed the Workers Union of Ireland, continuing to fight for the rights of Irish laborers until his death in 1947. Today, Jim Larkin is regarded as one of the instrumental figures in enacting changes regarding how unions operated, as well as changing the unethical practices of the corporations of the time.

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