The Oshkosh Woodworkers' Strike of 1898
"It has fallen to your lot, gentlemen, to be leading actors in one of the great dramas of human life. For some mysterious reason Providence has placed in your charge for today, aye for ages, the helpless toilers, the hopeless men, the despondent women and suffering children of the world; it is a great, a tremendous trust, and I know you will do your duty bravely, wisely, humanely and well; that you will render a verdict in this case which will be a milestone in the history of the world, and an inspiration and hope to the dumb, despairing millions whose fate is in your hands."
Conclusion of Clarence Darrow's closing argument in the trial of State of Wisconsin v. Kidd, Zentner and Troiber (1898)

Trial Documents

Argument of Clarence S. Darrow in the Wood-Workers Conspiracy Case 
Clarence Darrow's final argument in the case of the State of Wisconsin v. Thomas I. Kidd, George Zentner and Michael Troiber for conspiracy arising out of the strike of Woodworkers at Oshkosh, Wisconsin. The defendants were acquitted on November 2, 1898.

Magazine Articles

"The Very Pictures of Anarchy": Women in the Oshkosh Woodworkers' Strike of 1898, By Virginia Glenn Crane, 84 Wisconsin Magazine of History 44-59 (Spring 2001) 
Article which describes the important role women played in supporting the strike. Professor Crane is also the author of the most comprehensive book about the strike: The Oshkosh Woodworkers' Strike of 1898: A Wisconsin Community in Crisis. Used by permission of the Wisconsin Historical Society


Newspaper clippings from Thomas Kidd's scrapbook 
Newspaper clippings about the Oshkosh Woodworker strike and other labor issues. Courtesy of the Wisconsin Historical Society.


The American Workman by Thomas Kidd 
Thomas Kidd, General Secretary of the Amalgamated Wood-Workers International Union of America, was the main defendant in the conspiracy trial after the Oshkosh Woodworkers' Strike. Published in "The Making of America" by Robert Marion La Follette, William Matthews Handy, Charles Higgins, 1906.


Letters Written by Thomas Kidd about the Oshkosh WoodWorker' Strike 
Five letters written by Thomas Kidd as General Secretary of the Amalgamated Wood-Workers International Union of America. Kidd makes several references to Clarence Darrow. Courtesy of the Wisconsin Historical Society.

Photos - Key Figures