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Illinois Labor History Society

Labor History Articles

Filtering by Category: may day remembered

May Day Remembered

Webtrax Admin

"There will come a time when our silence will be more powerful than the voices you strangle today!"

August Spies, Haymarket Martyr

Five score years so soon are gone
That crown that fateful hanging day,
Yet still the years live on and on
And never will they go away!

Eight doomed martyrs spoke their dreams:
An eight-hour day, their modest hope;
For such effrontery it seems
Four lives were snatched by hangman's rope!

But by a miracle of fate
The voices still ring loud and clear;
The voices stilled by cruel hate
Are heard today, this hundreth year!

So many years have passed them by,
Yet louder still the timeless call
Rings 'round the world, a battle cry
For workers' rights, for peace for all!

Raise high the flag, you workers brave,
March strong and steady, side by side,
On First of May this hundredth year,
So not in vain those martyrs died!

by Susan King
May, 1990