Sunday, November 28, 2010

If Moyer-Haywood Die

The poem below was found by Gary Eller (see previous post) while scrounging through copies of Miner's Magazine. The magazine was published by the Western Federation of Miners' (WFM) and contains a lot of interesting information related to the politics and labor struggles of that period. Miners' Magazine was of course not particularly objective in their views but neither were those publications under the control of mine owner interests. Reminds me of Democratic versus Republican media today (i.e. MSNBC and FOX).

I am glad Gary was able to locate a batch of the magazines, as they are rather hard to come by except for those preserved in a few library archives. Quite a lot of coverage was provided to mining issues in Colorado and Idaho and the subsequent arrest and trial of Bill Haywood.

This poem below was written after Haywood, Pettibone and Moyer had been "extradited" or "kidnapped" from the state of Colorado and taken to Idaho. Thanks for sharing Gary.

If Moyer-Haywood Die

(Poem by Roland Onwood in the April, 12, 1906 issue of The Miner’s Magazine, the weekly publication of the Western Federation of Miners)

(A Song of Villainies and Penalties.)

O all true men and women, hear

A tale of crime and shame;

A murderous conspiracy

That blacks a nation’s fame!

If Moyer-Haywood die

From this foul villainy,

Ev’ry base wretch who wrought in it

Shall pay full penalty!

A perjured scoundrel was employed

To charge a murderous deed

Upon these just, true-hearted men,

Upright in thought and deed-

If Moyer-Haywood die

From such black villainy,

Our eight millions will demand

Befitting penalty!

Due legal process, human rights,

Were careless thrust aside;

Both seized in darkness, manacled,

All decencies denied-

If Moyer-Haywood die

From such brutality,

All decent people, everywhere,

Will cry for penalty!

Imprisoned, vilified, defamed,

The trial-farce they wait.

From which, if scoundrel-plotters dare,

They’ll pass to gallows-gate!

If Moyer-Haywood die

By such black infamy,

All earth’s roused millions will demand

It meet just penalty!

For further reading, see:

Arouse ye Slaves! Eugene V. Debs (came out about the same time in Appeal to Reason).

Pettibone versus Nichols, 203, U.S., 192 (1906).


Stand Up! Ye Workers (includes melody so sing along).

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