Wednesday’s History: December 30
Today, December 30, in history includes U.S. southern border set and a major sit-down strike, according to history.com.
In 1853, the Gadsen Purchase was signed by U.S. Minister to Mexico James Gadsden and President of Mexico General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna.
The treaty established the southern United States border to be west of El Paso, Texas. The final cost was $10 million to purchase what is now New Mexico and Arizona.
The land was purchased for railroad construction. In 1861, the Southern Pacific branch of the Central Pacific Railroad was established.
A major sit-down strike was in 1936 in Flint, Michigan. General Motors autoworkers wanted the United Auto Workers to be recognized as a bargaining agent. The workers also wanted a set minimum wage scale and procedures set that would protect assembly line workers from injury.
The strike actually began in smaller plants: Atlanta (November 16), Kansas City (December 16) and Cleveland (December 28). On December 30, the night shift in Flint quit working.
Over a course of time, GM argued the workers were trespassing, turned off the heat and cut food supply. Then-Michigan Gov. Frank Murphy refused to send in forces, believing that many would be killed.
GM, with President Roosevelt's urging, recognized and signed the UAW agreement after 44 days. The workers were given a 5 percent raise.