James Larkin, popularly known as Big Jim, was a renowned Irish labor organizer and militant. He is the great brain behind the launching of the general worker’s union and the Irish transport. The general was born in Liverpool, England on 21st January 1876.
In 1903, Jim married Elizabeth Brown and parented four boys. The aforementioned unions established by Jim were the region’s largest, depicting his incredible leadership.
Mr. Jim Larkin was an aggressive Marxist and kept pursuing his endeavors effortlessly until January 1947 when he passed on. Before becoming a foreman, Mr. James had worked in various other places in a bid to supplement his income. Learn more about Jim Larkin: http://www.rte.ie/centuryireland/index.php/articles/jim-larkin-released-from-prison
Larkin believed that workers deserved the very best and not unfair treatment, something that triggered his passion for serving in the National Union of Dock Labourers (NUDL).
Explore Big Jim Larkin as a Wrecker and Champion
Formation of ITGWU by Jim came at a time when it was much needed by the Irish labor movement. This was because most of the activists felt abandoned by British-based unions that unionized less than 10% of Irish employees. Founding the union strongly was not a walk in the park, but James Larkin went ahead to enhance the labor movement by enforcing republicanism.
As if that was not enough, Jim’s growing interest in syndicalism compelled him to push for that one big union incorporating all workers. It called for a daring and aggressive personality to ensure satisfaction for the Irish workers, thanks to James Larkin.
His zeal for his pursuits was unstoppable, and it made him more than just a globe-trotter. To date, Jim Larkin is recognized as among the heroes who fought for worker’s rights. He stood his ground despite the shaky relationships he would have depended on for support.
James Serving in Dublin
As said, Jim Larkin’s legacy lives on because of the significant commitment he showed. He could do anything to ensure that workers got fair working conditions. When working with NUDL, his ideas were not welcomed particularly because of the strike action methods. It was then that they moved him to Dublin.
On landing there, Jim Larkin did not hesitate to push for reform in the working sector. In fact, it is while in Dublin that he launched the Irish Transport and General Workers’ Union (ITGWU) as discussed above. The most interesting thing is that he encouraged everyone to enroll at the union regardless of their skillfulness. The union would later have so many things put in place in appreciation of the workers.
In a Nutshell
Although most unskilled workers in Dublin had very few rights, Jim and James Connolly helped several of them lead strikes. In 1913, the major strike, Dublin Lockout, happened and the workers boycotted work for about seven months.
By the end of it, they had won their right to fair employment. Precisely, Jim Larkin was more than just an activist. In one of the industrial disputes, he delivered a speech that got Constance Markievicz getting submerged by a great primeval force. Jim’s voice came forth like a tornado, leaving the crowds in amazement.