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The Promise of Prosperity


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									                        The Promise of Prosperity:
Capital Flight, Regional Economic Development, and Anti-Unionism in the
                             Postwar South

                                Tami J. Friedman
                     Department of History, Brock University
                         St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada

      The Workshop on the Political Economy of Modern Capitalism, 2009-2010
            The Media of Capitalism: Labor, Commodities, and money
              Charles Warren Center for Studies in American History
                                Harvard University
                                    Nov. 9, 2009

       Industrial development programs are widely understood as routes to economic

advancement, that is, as strategies for creating jobs, generating tax dollars, expanding purchasing

power, and otherwise enlarging the pool of resources needed to strengthen geographic areas

whose economic well-being is in decline. All around us, we see intense competition between

communities, states, regions, even nations, for the payrolls and revenue that, according to

industrial development practitioners, are the source of economic growth. The conditions under

which the recruitment of industrial or commercial enterprises are carried out, however, suggest

that those engaged in such activities—and the people and places on whose behalf they are

presumably acting—often pay a heavy price. Too often, ―success‖ in courting or keeping

industry rests on the provision of low wages, tax abatement, and other publicly-financed forms of

subsidization; as a result, workers, small business owners, and others who hope to gain from

development projects instead receive only limited rewards. Economic development programs,

then, do not necessarily produce the economic stability, security, and prosperity that they

promise to bring.

       This paper explores the contradictions embedded in what one might call

―industrialization by inducement‖ by examining the anti-union strategies employed by boosters

who sought to bring northern-based industry to the South after World War II. During the postwar

period, many southern business and political leaders called for industrialization of their region in

hopes of boosting a dwindling population, providing new employment opportunities for white

workers in the wake of sweeping changes in agricultural production, and establishing greater

autonomy in the face of political challenges to Jim Crow. They argued not only that industrial

development was the key to bringing prosperity to an impoverished region but also that the

presence of labor unions—by undermining the South‘s attractiveness as a business climate—

would impede efforts to improve economic conditions in the South.

       Certainly the postwar South was in desperate need of assistance. According to a variety

of measures, its people faced dire conditions. On the eve of the Great Depression, infant

mortality rates in the region were well above the U.S. average, for example. With per-pupil

education expenditures in southern states ranged from 37 to 63 percent of the national average,

moreover, it was not surprising that southerners had the nation‘s highest illiteracy rates. In 1938

President Franklin D. Roosevelt labeled the South as ―the Nation‘s No. 1 economic problem,‖

arguing that this was ―the Nation‘s problem, not merely the South‘s.‖ Many southerners echoed

his assertion, insisting that the South‘s poverty stemmed from its status as an exploited colony

that supplied labor and raw materials to the industrialized North. Their claims were not without

foundation: since the late nineteenth century, northern-based corporate leaders had been

acquiring millions of acres of southern land rich in timber and minerals as well as investing

heavily in southern railroads and iron and steel operations. During World War II, the southern

economy was strengthened by the dramatic infusion of federal funds for military bases and war

production plants. In the wake of the war, however, the South continued to lag behind. 1

       The solution, for many southerners, was to establish manufacturing plants that, while still

utilizing the region‘s human and natural resources, would directly benefit its economy and

people rather than sending the fruits of industrial activity outside of the South. In 1936, Governor

Hugh L. White of Mississippi called for adopting an innovative state program, Balance

Agriculture with Industry (BAWI), which would enable communities to issue industrial revenue

bonds and then use the proceeds to purchase land and build factories for manufacturing firms. In

outlining his plan, White suggested that it would be targeted largely at companies based outside

of the state. As White explained it, the effort would represent an important step toward ―bringing

immediate and lasting prosperity to our people‖ by providing ―places in which to have

employment, and . . . a market for the products of the farm.‖ While some observers complained

that the plan was ―socialistic,‖ and although the state constitution expressly barred local

communities from lending their credit on behalf of corporations—precisely what BAWI called

for—the program not only won the approval of legislators but survived a constitutional challenge

as well. With Mississippi‘s average annual per-capita income at exactly half of the national

figure ($212 compared to $636), according to Governor White, the state‘s leaders understood

that drastic measures were needed to address the crisis they faced. While the program‘s impact

was limited in the late 1930s—only seven plants were operating under BAWI‘s auspices by the

spring of 1940, with fewer than 2,700 employees—it helped boost the wartime economy and laid

the groundwork for a renewed effort to lure northern businesses after the war. Alongside

Mississippi‘s pioneering effort, other southern states implemented or escalated industry-luring

programs as well. 2

       While most promotional efforts were directed at northern industrialists, those who carried

out the program also had to win converts within the South itself. Not all southern leaders

supported industrialization; in the Mississippi Delta, for example, many cotton planters worried

that manufacturing opportunities would draw (mostly African-American) farm laborers away

from the land. During World War II, however, as farm workers quit the region in large numbers,

planters turned increasingly to the mechanization and diversification of agriculture in order to

reduce their dependence on the dwindling labor supply. Alongside the much-studied black

exodus from the South in wartime, a dramatic departure of white southerners also occurred.

Members of the southern elite, concerned about these losses, hoped to revitalize the region by

providing employment for white workers while preserving their own status as masters of a social

universe in which sharp racial-economic inequities prevailed. Indeed, the desire to maintain

racial segregation further solidified their commitment to industrial growth. Reeling from a series

of attacks emanating from federal authorities and civil rights groups in the mid- and late 1940s,

some southern leaders called for states‘ rights in the economic as well as political arena. By

achieving greater economic sovereignty, they reasoned, Jim Crow‘s defenders could more easily

withstand threats to the region‘s political independence. Recognizing the multiple advantages of

building an industrial economy, agricultural leaders became key players alongside businessmen

in the campaign to attract northern-based manufacturing to the South. 3

           While boosters typically represented an elite stratum within southern society, they were

compelled to market the concept of industrialization to ordinary southerners as well. Boosters

understood that, if they hoped to convince an interested manufacturer to invest in an unfamiliar

southern setting, they had to demonstrate community-wide enthusiasm, cooperation, and support.

Their efforts had practical implications in Mississippi, where BAWI bond issues required

approval of the local electorate at the appropriate city or county level; a majority of all registered

voters had to cast ballots in the election, and at least two thirds of those who did so had to vote in

favor of the plan. In hopes of obtaining results heavily weighted in favor of a prospective

employer, boosters mobilized area residents in dramatic, large-scale campaigns to ―get out the

vote.‖ 4

           The promise of prosperity stood at the center of these campaigns. The state Agricultural

and Industrial (A&I) Board, charged with overseeing Mississippi‘s BAWI program, provided

templates for advertisements, newspaper editorials, and other materials to local government

officials, chamber of commerce leaders, and others active in industrial recruitment. Included in

the board‘s BAWI Action Kit, for example, was an advertisement entitled, ―THE MERCHANT

CAN TELL YOU WHAT JOBS MEAN!‖ Declaring that ―It Takes Jobs and Payrolls to Balance

the Prosperity of Our Community,‖ the promotional piece pictured a sample ―vote yes‖ ballot

with the heading, ―Let‘s Make SURE (Town) Is in the March of Progress.‖ Local boosters went

all out to emphasize that the entire community would prosper if a northern factory came to town.

In the fall of 1950, business and civic leaders in Greenville, Mississippi, located in the heart of

the Yazoo-Mississippi Delta, arranged to sign a contract for the state‘s largest BAWI bond issue,

set at $4.75 million, with Alexander Smith, Inc., a 95-year old carpet company based in Yonkers,

New York. The election was scheduled for January 15, 1951. Greenville‘s daily newspaper, the

Delta Democrat-Times, whose publisher, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Hodding Carter, Jr.,

was an avid booster, informed readers that the plant would employ between 600 and 900 workers

and supply a $2-3 million payroll. The paper ran advertisements with such headlines as

―Business Lives on Payrolls,‖ designed to attract merchants‘ support. In the month leading up to

the election, the Democrat-Times also published numerous testimonials by local business and

civic leaders—including a Methodist minister, an appliance dealer, a power company official,

the head of the local Veterans of Foreign Wars chapter, and a board member of the Greenville

League of Women Voters—who explained how Greenville stood to gain from the carpet mill. B.

F. Smith, secretary-manager of the Delta Council, representing the interests of prominent

planters and their allies, noted that the new factory not only would offer ―excellent employment

opportunities,‖ especially for (white) women who enjoyed few alternatives to clerical work but

also, aside from the sizable payroll, promised ―direct benefits that will accrue to merchants and

businessmen.‖ The newspaper even featured a gas station attendant, George W. Miller, billed as

a ―working man.‖ Miller praised the plant‘s potential for easing pressure on public resources:

―The more jobs there are, the less people there will be on welfare,‖ he said. 5

       Because Greenville was one of the few places in Mississippi where African Americans

could exercise voting rights in the Jim Crow era, boosters enlisted black residents in the bond

issue crusade. Like their white counterparts, black community leaders waxed enthusiastic about

the advantages that the carpet mill would bring. Reverend L. S. Rounds, executive secretary of

the Colored YMCA, argued that attracting Alexander Smith was ―certainly a step toward

elimination of poverty in the community.‖ ―Better living conditions create better citizens, and

better citizens lead to community prosperity,‖ he observed. Alongside such public

pronouncements, African Americans lent tangible support to the effort as well. When the

Chamber of Commerce launched its ―get out the vote‖ coordinating effort, it established a

Newspaper and Radio Committee on which H. H. Humes, editor of Greenville‘s

accommodationist black newspaper, The Delta Leader, served. A ―colored division‖ of the

Activities Committee raised $82.50 to help defray the campaign‘s expenses; its chair, W. H.

Holmes, estimated that ―among the colored people‖ there was ―at least 99% support.‖ Perhaps to

facilitate black residents‘ participation in the mid-January election, qualified voters were not

required to present poll tax receipts. Equally important, as Hodding Carter‘s wife and business

partner, Betty Werlein Carter, remembered, white leaders promised black community

representatives that black workers would enjoy access to ―good jobs‖ at the carpet mill. The

assurances proved effective, for the election turnout, which resulted in an overwhelming

supportive tally of 2,306 to 31, included a ―particularly heavy Negro vote.‖ 6

       Along with African-American leaders, representatives of organized labor participated

actively in BAWI drives. In the early 1950s there were about 50,000 union members in

Mississippi, more than two thirds of them affiliated with the generally cautious, conservative,

and segregationist American Federation of Labor (AFL). In Greenville, union members were

concentrated heavily in the construction trades. Officers of United Brotherhood of Carpenters

and Joiners Local 984 made an unsolicited $25 contribution for bond publicity on behalf of the

union and its members, while Plumbers and Pipe Fitters Local 618 sponsored a newspaper ad

that equated a ―yes‖ vote on the bond issue with ―Good jobs—good working conditions—

prosperity for all.‖ Local 618 also donated $50 to the Chamber, and the Democrat-Times

highlighted the comments of the local‘s secretary and business manager, Harold E. Cox. Aware

that construction of the carpet factory would involve hiring numerous tradesmen, Cox noted that

―even before the plant is finished, money from [it] will be turning over in Greenville, helping

everybody.‖ Like businessmen, union leaders argued that industry would produce widespread

economic well-being. ―We always try to help out in things that are for the good of the

Community,‖ Cox remarked. 7

       The stress on community-wide prosperity achieved several important goals. First, it

helped alleviate some southerners‘ fears that new factories would prove a costly drain on limited

resources. During the first phase of the BAWI program (1936-1940), participating communities

typically charged employers nominal rents (usually $1,000 a year, and in one case just $5 plus a

minimum payroll guarantee) that did not come close to enabling local officials to pay off the

industrial revenue bonds. A 1949 amendment to the legislation mandated that rental payments

cover the cost of the principal and interest on the bonds. Still, manufacturers who made use of

BAWI enjoyed a host of additional incentives. Since cities and counties held title to the land and

buildings developed under BAWI contracts, industrialists paid no taxes on the property on or in

which they operated plants. Rental payments could be written off as operating expenses, and

interest on the publicly-issued bonds was tax-exempt. New businesses in Mississippi also

received tax exemptions on industrial equipment for a period of years. Hodding Carter, in

promoting the Smith bond issue, emphasized that the company, not the city, would retire the

bonds with annual rental payments over a twenty-year period and assured his readers that ―no tax

increases are involved.‖ His remarks suggested that at least some area residents wondered

whether the advantages of acquiring new industry were worth the anticipated expense. 8

       By insisting that all sectors of the community stood to gain from industrialization,

moreover, boosters helped develop a sense of unity among a diverse range of groups. Southern

leaders, in the late 1940s and 1950s, were well aware of the potential for conflict in their region,

not only as a result of nascent civil rights activism but also because the nation‘s leading labor

federations, the AFL and the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO), launched major

southern organizing drives after World War II. By promoting an economic agenda that, although

conceived and implemented by those who held disproportionate economic and political power,

did seem to serve the interests of the entire community, they may have hoped to prevent sharp

ruptures along racial and economic lines. At times the strategy proved quite effective. In the

spring of 1952, for example, building trade unionists began picketing the site where Alexander

Smith‘s new plant, Greenville Mills, was under construction on the grounds that several

contractors were offering substandard wages and working conditions. Although most of the work

continued without disruption, after seven weeks a group of prominent citizens—deeply

concerned about the potential negative consequences of the conflict—pleaded with the

tradesmen to cease and desist in the interest of the ―greatest good to the greatest number.‖ Harold

Cox, heading not only the plumbers‘ local but also the area Building and Construction Trades

Council, reminded his detractors that workers, who were also taxpayers, ―can‘t contribute much‖

if they were poorly paid. ―All we are interested in . . . is to make a decent living for our families,

educate our children and help make a better community,‖ he said. So committed was Cox to the

community‘s economic welfare, however, that he agreed to ―do what is best for the most people

not only now but for the future.‖ He called off the picketing without obtaining a single

concession from the local elite. 9

       Certainly the arrival of new industry did benefit southern communities in significant

ways. By early 1953 Greenville Mills was up and running, and by June 1954 it had 450

employees. In 1954 alone the carpet firm purchased more than $400,000 worth of local goods

and services, contributed a payroll of about $1.6 million, and despite its exemption from local

taxes, stimulated a 12 percent increase in the city‘s personal property tax rolls. In late June 1954

Smith executives announced plants to shut down the company‘s Yonkers operation and shift the

bulk of its operations to Greenville (the remainder went to a newly purchased plant in Liberty,

South Carolina). The Yonkers plant closing dramatically enlarged the Greenville operation;

between May 1954 and May 1955 the labor force more than doubled, jumping from 415 to 960

employees. Many Korean War veterans, facing few economic opportunities upon leaving the

service, obtained positions at the Greenville factory, while white women, according to union

organizers, ―have been quitting jobs with the telephone company‖ for the ―choice plum‖ of a

carpet mill job. Black men also found employment with the carpet company but were relegated

to menial posts. Frustrated by exclusion from production jobs and promotions and angered by

racist treatment by management, some African Americans soon left the mill in search of

opportunities elsewhere. Their departure, however, did not diminish the larger impact of the

mill‘s arrival (along with the Korean War-era reactivation of Greenville‘s army air base).

According to Hodding Carter, Greenville witnessed the establishment of five new subdivisions

within a year of the Yonkers shutdown as well as several new churches and shopping centers and

a new elementary school. The Democrat-Times‘ circulation, he reported, rose by 40 percent. 10

       Despite the widespread impact of industrialization in southern communities, however,

boosters themselves received a disproportionate share of the rewards. Southerners who owned

construction firms won contracts to build the new factories, while prominent attorneys provided

local representation for the firms. In the Alexander Smith case, Smith officials appointed Rhodes

Wasson, a member of the Greenville City Council who was instrumental in sealing the BAWI

agreement, to the Greenville Mills board. The company also hired John S. ―Jack‖ Baskin, the son

of a leading planter and city official, as the first personnel manager for the plant. More broadly,

the successful recruitment of industry strengthened the local business elite. As executives and

managerial personnel relocated to southern communities, they enlarged the ranks of business

groups such as chambers of commerce and state manufacturers‘ associations as well as fraternal

organizations (including the Rotary, Kiwanis, and Lion‘s Clubs), all of which played an informal

role in shaping—and controlling—southern economic and political life. As employers

themselves, boosters also benefited from state-sponsored supports for business, including access

to BAWI contracts in Mississippi, that—while designed primarily for outside industries—were

available to local firms as well. Boosters‘ avowed commitment to the public interest

notwithstanding, industrialization enabled the white power structure to retain its authority and

influence in the region, thus helping preserve racial-economic inequities that some southerners

hoped the acquisition of industry would diminish or remove. 11

       Southern boosters‘ commitment to inequality was reflected in the very strategies they

deployed to attract migratory firms. Their approach was not unique to the postwar period. Prior

to winning the governor‘s seat in the mid-1930s, BAWI founder Hugh White had served as

mayor of Columbia, Mississippi. A wealthy lumberman, White was the area‘s principal

employer until Depression-era hard times led him to shut down his mills. He then spearheaded a

drive by local businessmen to raise about $80,000 to attract a garment manufacturing plant.

White drew on the experience to drum up support for BAWI. While Columbia‘s struggling

residents had been ―practically in despair with a forlorn, hopeless outlook,‖ the recruitment

effort, according to White, had turned the town into ―a thriving commercial center, with happy

homes, property values again normal, a sense of security and business opportunity prevailing,

with faces turned to the future.‖ Between 1929 and 1935, he argued, per-capita business

transactions in Columbia had increased by 26 percent. Not everyone shared White‘s rosy view.

Both northern and southern journalists reported that Columbia‘s female garment workers were

earning as little as $9.11—and in some cases just $7.20—per week; while in training, moreover,

the girls and women went unpaid. The contradictory assessments of Columbia‘s ―success‖ story

struck at the heart of the debate over how to weigh the tangible costs and benefits of

industrialization and helped guide boosters‘ thinking after World War II. When advertising the

South‘s appeal to northern employers, they emphasized such advantages as low wages, tax

abatements, and reduced utility and transportation rates—incentives that they themselves, as

employers, often enjoyed. When addressing southern audiences, they stressed the sizable

economic contributions—often in the form of multiplier effects—that new employers would


       The debate over costs and benefits raised a critical question—did industry produce

prosperity or perpetuate poverty?—that helped drive southern boosters‘ efforts to prevent

unionization of newly arriving manufacturing plants. Again, this stance was not new in the

postwar era. Not only had southern employers long embraced anti-unionism but also agricultural

leaders were among the region‘s most virulent opponents of organized labor; Delta cotton

planters‘ worries about industrial recruitment reflected, in part, their fear that farm laborers

would embrace the union cause. These concerns escalated in the postwar period, as the

movement of northern-based industry to the South drew the attention of union leaders. In the

spring of 1946, CIO officials announced plans to unionize at least a million southern workers by

1947 in a campaign that became known as Operation Dixie; shortly thereafter, AFL leaders

declared their intention to sign up a million southern employees as well. The principal aim of

both federations was to narrow or eliminate the interregional distinctions (particularly the North-

South wage differential) that helped stimulate capital migration—precisely the conditions that

southern boosters and northern employers wanted to maintain. Thus, as southern boosters

expanded their efforts to recruit industry in the postwar period, they also intensified the

campaign to suppress union activity. Allied with northern business leaders who shared the

southerners‘ commitment to both capital flight and anti-unionism, boosters were in a stronger

position to prevent unions from flourishing on southern terrain. 13

       Anti-unionism (and the related theme of anti-radicalism, particularly potent in the early

Cold War era) was a central feature of boosters‘ promotional campaigns. The A&I Board,

advertising widely in such national publications as the New York Times and the Wall Street

Journal, promised industrialists ―intelligent, skilled, adaptable labor‖ and touted the state‘s

population of ―friendly, native-born citizens [who] believe as their forefathers believed, that an

honest day‘s pay deserves an honest day‘s work.‖ Greenville Chamber of Commerce leader N.

E. Wingate, hoping to lure the Selby Shoe Company from Portsmouth, Ohio, in the summer of

1949, told company president Gordon Carson not only that Greenville had ―no labor trouble‖ but

also that area citizens were ―of strictly the conservative view, and 100% for the free enterprise

system and the American way of life.‖ Southern boosters‘ promises meshed perfectly with

northern executives‘ demands. Alexander Smith officials learned of Greenville from

representatives of the Fantus Factory Locating Service, a consulting firm whose services Smith

had retained. Noting that Mississippi was ―one of the few non-union strongholds‖ in the nation,

Fantus personnel advised Smith leaders, ―There is every indication that with proper management

you could operate a non-union plant.‖14

       As with industrial promotion, the notion of prosperity permeated anti-union drives.

Despite boosters‘ claims that their region was union-free territory, organized labor did make

some inroads in the South after the war. When organizers came calling, however, southern

business and civic leaders insisted that their presence—and certainly their victory in union

elections—would impede economic advancement by keeping prospective corporate migrants at

bay. Early in Operation Dixie, for example, CIO organizers targeted Grenada Industries, an

Indianapolis-based hosiery mill established in Grenada, Mississippi, under BAWI in 1937.

Business and civic leaders, aided by local media, responded with a vicious anti-union campaign.

Having ―agreed to tax themselves and mortgaged their homes and other real estate to launch an

industry,‖ boosters argued, taxpaying citizens had ―opened industrial doors with DOLLAR

OPPORTUNITIES‖ for those coming from ―the more drudging work of surrounding farms.‖ A

union election, therefore, was a matter of concern not only to affected workers but to ―Grenada

business men and property owners‖ as well. In concrete terms, labor agitation did threaten to

diminish the gains brought by new industry, for the BAWI contract promised that, ―during the

period of any labor disturbance caused by outside interference,‖ the firm would be released from

its payroll guarantee. Union activity could also undermine future progress; as the Grenada

County Weekly editorialized, ―None of the prospective industries dickering with Grenada will

come here at all if Grenada is dominated by the CIO.‖ Opponents of unionism linked workers‘

fortunes to those of the entire community: as one advertisement in the Daily Sentinel-Star bluntly

put it, ―A vote NO which Is Against the Union IS A VOTE FOR The Community.‖ Not

surprisingly, the employees rejected the union by a vote of 297 to 122. 15

       Some unionists, perhaps on the defensive because of the labor movement‘s limited

southern presence, tacitly accepted boosters‘ framing of the industrial development debate. In

1950, for example, the Mississippi Economic Council (MEC), formed in 1948 to represent

business and agricultural leaders‘ interests across diverse regions of the state, led the campaign

for a right-to-work law. (The federal Taft-Hartley Act of 1947, approved over President Harry S.

Truman‘s veto, allowed states to pass legislation that would outlaw any collective-bargaining

agreement that contained a ―union shop‖ provision requiring union membership as a condition of

work.) During the 1950 campaign, former Mississippi State Federation of Labor (AFL) president

and AFL representative Holt E. Ross testified that Mississippi had ―now beyond any reasonable

doubt the finest labor relations in the United States of America and therefore the finest labor

relations in the world.‖ Indeed, he noted, the A&I Board‘s own promotional materials echoed his

assertion by regularly touting the state‘s ―complete harmony between labor and industry.‖ There

was no reason, Ross insisted, to impose constraints on ―friendly, native born Americans‖ who,

according to boosters themselves, were already ―meeting industry more than half way.‖

Although the bill was defeated, the MEC revived the right-to-work effort—this time

successfully—in 1954.16

       Laborites associated with the CIO—a more inclusive organization than its skilled-craft

counterpart that, in some circumstances, championed the interests of both black and white

workers and a greater working-class voice in shaping economic policy—adopted a somewhat

more critical stance. CIO leaders challenged boosters‘ premises directly, in two important ways.

First, they argued that, because boosters‘ own recruitment strategies promised to undermine the

South‘s economic progress, unionization was needed to compensate for the limitations of

industrial development campaigns. During the 1954 right-to-work fight, for example, the CIO-

affiliated Mississippi State Industrial Union Council (IUC) agreed that ―the thought back of the

BAWI program is excellent‖ but asked, ―If these new plants fail to bring new money into the

state – what price new industry?‖ If manufacturers were lured southward by tax breaks and

cheap labor, and if southern workers were kept from organizing unions to increase payrolls, the

IUC argued, then ―we are assuring ourselves that only minimum wages will be paid.‖ ―If we in

Mississippi are going to permit greedy northern industrialists to stampede us into adopting laws

to ‗curb‘ labor,‖ the council concluded, ―we can forget our BAWI program and abandon all hope

of bringing any degree of prosperity to our fair state.‖ 17

       Second, CIO unionists argued that labor organizations, alongside or perhaps in lieu of

employers, were themselves a major source of economic strength. In early 1949, Robert ―Bob‖

Starnes, CIO director for Mississippi and Louisiana during Operation Dixie, argued that

unionization, by dramatically raising workers‘ wages, not only enabled workers themselves to

live more comfortably but also benefited the community at large. Focusing especially on Laurel,

Mississippi, where the CIO had successfully organized the Masonite Corporation, Starnes

asserted that more money in workers‘ pockets meant more money for merchants, professional

men, small shopkeepers, even utility owners and tax collectors—―in short, to all those who share

in the economic welfare of a thriving community.‖ ―More payroll dollars mean more and better

business,‖ Starnes commented, ―and better business means a better town. It‘s as simple as that.‖

By stimulating residential and commercial expansion, moreover, the higher wages won by

unions made more resources available for public investment in recreational facilities, schools,

and other features of a healthy community life. Unionization, Starnes suggested, was a catalyst

for southern economic progress rather than an obstacle to achieving economic gains. 18

       A few southern business and civic leaders found such arguments compelling. Hodding

Carter, for example, was deeply committed to southern industrial development, precisely because

he saw it as a way to address the crushing poverty and backwardness that the South‘s

commitment to cotton culture had wrought. He was unusual among boosters for his direct

criticism of the ―industrialization by inducement‖ approach. He publicly castigated not only the

Yankee exploiters of southern land and labor but also the southern industrial promoters who

lured them with promises of ―the willingness, the abundance, and the good behavior—the 100

per cent Americanism—of Southern workers.‖ ―We have more to offer the cruising

industrialist,‖ Carter insisted,‖ than docility, cheapness, and a blank check.‖ In 1950, Carter told

a Laurel labor journalist that he was impressed that Laurel had achieved ―a splendid purchasing

power‖ in comparison with other communities, including his own, ―because of higher industrial

wages.‖ During the spring 1952 labor dispute at the Alexander Smith construction site, Carter

was one of the signatories to the plea for unions to abandon the picket line. However, he also

pointed out in a Democrat-Times editorial that at least one contractor on the job had a ―smelly

labor record.‖ ―No enduring prosperity was ever built upon a system of low wages for the many

and big profits for the few,‖ he cautioned, ―as the history of the agricultural South certainly

proves.‖ 19

       Most pro-industry advocates, despite their declarations on behalf of community

advancement, did not share Carter‘s perspective, as their response to a new wave of unionism

made clear. Between 1958 and 1962 Greenville lured five additional manufacturing companies,

all from Midwestern states. Unions with more power and resources than those in apparel and

textiles—labor-intensive industries more likely to head southward—descended on Greenville in

hopes of organizing the newer plants. By then, many industrial workers in the area, now

acclimated to the rhythms of industrial employment and able to compare wages and conditions

across employers, were more open to union appeals. In line with CIO leader Bob Starnes‘ earlier

assertions, USWA organizer William T. ―Bill‖ Edwards, overseeing two union drives in

Greenville in the early 1960s, argued that since ―fair wages mean increased purchasing power,‖

the ―entire business community‖ stood to gain if the union came in. The USWA spearheaded a

campaign to distribute cards to business owners, indicating that purchases were made possible by

the union membership of those who patronized local stores. Greenville‘s Chamber of Commerce

leaders quickly warned their members not to be taken in by the charade. The USWA, the

boosters argued, wanted to suggest that unions played a special role in benefiting the community,

when in fact no union ―had anything to do with the location of industrial jobs.‖ Rather, Chamber

officials insisted, workers‘ purchasing power resulted from payrolls that were ―continually

growing‖ due to the voluntary action of industries that ―above anyone else recognize that a good

day‘s work justifies a good day‘s pay.‖ ―Most of our industrial workers are not members of any

union,‖ Chamber leaders reminded their own membership—and they intended to keep it that


         Boosters continued to invoke the promise of prosperity when intervening directly in

union campaigns. In 1961, the International Chemical Workers Union launched a union drive at

an auto parts plant recently arrived in Greenville from Detroit. In an open letter to ―Our Fellow

Citizens at Carrick Products Company,‖ boosters warned that the election ―not only can seriously

affect your own future, but also, it can seriously affect the economic growth and industrial future

of Greenville and Washington County.‖ New factories, they argued, offered good wages to

workers that, in turn, provided ―the income of a great many other citizens who supply goods and

services to them.‖ Moreover, since county residents had approved a $750,000 bond issue to build

Carrick, ―every citizen of our county has a big stake in the success and security‖ of the firm. That

summer, Carrick workers rejected the union by a two-to-one vote. Boosters not only portrayed

unionization as a threat to community advancement but also suggested that, when workers

rejected unions, economic progress would ensue. Also in 1961, the International Association of

Machinists, encountering intense resistance at U.S. Gypsum (a wallboard plant operating in

Greenville since 1930), withdrew its petition for an election there. Company officials

immediately hiked wages and, later that year, announced a multimillion-dollar expansion

program in Greenville with 125 additional jobs. The Chamber of Commerce promptly placed a

congratulatory advertisement in the Sunday paper, attributing the news to employees‘ ―hard

work, initiative, and skills‖ and asserting that the expansion would benefit not only Gypsum

workers but ―your friends and neighbors‖ as well. Using canned data obtained from the U.S.

Chamber, the local group quantified the coming prosperity by totting up expected increases in

population, personal income, bank deposits, car registrations, and retail sales as well as

employment growth in such sectors as transportation, construction, professional services, and

retail trade. The employees were not only good workers but also ―good citizens.‖ ―Greenville is

proud of you,‖ the Chamber declared.21

       When the union menace seemed especially compelling, boosters took more drastic action

to unite the community on industry‘s behalf. In April 1962, just as the United Steelworkers of

America was petitioning for an election at the Atkins Saw plant (formerly of Indianapolis) and

accusing the company of unfair labor practices, Greenville mayor George F. Archer proclaimed

―Industrial Progress Week.‖ Praising the area for its ―excellent business climate,‖ Archer

expressed appreciation for the ―several thousand jobs‖ offered by area manufacturers and noted

―with pleasure the wage increases that several industries have recently announced.‖ ―Greenville

industries and the people they employ,‖ he asserted, ―create for all our citizens higher standards

of living and more productive lives.‖ The celebration was marked by banners across a major

downtown thoroughfare and a nearby highway, plant tours, product displays in banks and retail

outlets, and presentations at local clubs. Kiwanians, for example, learned of the phenomenal

gains in population (more than 11,000 new county residents) and personal income (over $22

million) resulting from industrial growth. The Democrat-Times ran a flurry of feature stories on

individual firms, highlighting company histories, production processes, and the positive

attributes of Greenville that had prompted a southern move. Retailers ran display ads in the

paper, in one case saluting Greenville‘s industries for ―the employment you give our citizens!‖

and ―your interest in our community affairs!‖ At week‘s end, leading industries planned to

distribute $156,000 worth of payrolls in $2 bills ―as a graphic demonstration of the effect of their

payrolls on the area‘s economy.‖ The Atkins election, held in June, was close and contested, but

the USWA lost the race. 22

       Despite the vigor with which southern boosters courted industry and battled unions, they

did not always get their way. At times they recruited firms that went bankrupt or failed to

provide even minimal employment. At times they spoke of going after firms that required greater

productivity and more advanced skill levels, which they expected would result in higher pay.

Ordinary citizens occasionally grew weary of ―industrialization by inducement,‖ as when

Washington County residents defeated a 1970 referendum to commit new public funds for the

Chamber‘s industrial development plans. One couple, complaining in a letter to the Democrat-

Times of ―here today and gone tomorrow industry,‖ argued that ―middle-class people are

carrying far too much of our tax load.‖ Even local public officials could not always prioritize

industry‘s interests; despite vehement opposition from Greenville‘s leading manufacturers, all of

whom had been located outside of the city limits as a tax-avoidance strategy when moving to the

area, the City Council, in 1969, decided to annex the land on which the executives operated their

plants. Nor were anti-union crusades always successful; despite their best efforts, by the spring

of 1966 Chamber manager S. D. ―Doug‖ Guthrie was lamenting that Greenville ―was becoming

a union town.‖ 23

       Even when boosters did achieve their objectives, however, the much-vaunted prosperity

failed to appear. In 1979 the share of southerners living below the official federal poverty

threshold was well above the national average; Mississippi, with a poverty rate nearly twice that

of the nation (23.9 percent), was the poorest U.S. state. Of the ten states reporting the lowest per-

capita incomes in 1980, moreover, seven were located in the South (again, Mississippi was last).

That economic progress was so limited in the wake of southern ―successes‖ raises several

concerns. Did the promise of widespread economic advancement reflect boosters‘ genuine desire

to alleviate economic hardship in their communities, or was it little more than a façade designed

to deflect attention from—and perhaps perpetuate—persistent economic inequities in the South?

Did anti-unionism, even if considered a legitimate or at least logical component of southern

industrial development policy (since many northern manufacturers, after all, did hope to escape

unionization by fleeing southward) contribute significantly to the inequality and poverty that

continue to characterize the South today? Did southern appeals to the entire community diminish

unionists‘ opportunities to assert labor‘s particular interests, or did it open up space for them to

propose new ways of thinking about the value of new industry and the meaning of economic

growth? In considering these questions, it is worth noting that southern boosters‘ behavior, while

seemingly unique to their region, was emulated elsewhere. James C. Cobb has alluded to the

―southernization of the nation‘s economy,‖ in which the advent of global competition for capital

investment has imposed downward pressure on communities across the United States. Similarly,

Robert H. Zieger has suggested that anti-union activities that ―once seemed southern aberrations

have become increasingly standard nationally‖; the low-wage, non-union approach to industrial

recruitment, moreover, ―has found wide support in former union strongholds, as cities, states,

and entire regions find themselves emulating southern pioneers.‖ How we assess historical

approaches to industrial development in the South, therefore, may have larger implications for

the nation as a whole.24


    U.S. Department of Commerce, Statistical Abstract of the United States: 1933, 55th ed. (Washington: U.S.

Government Printing Office, 1933), 87-88, table 79; and 36, table 28. For per-pupil expenditures, see Gavin Wright,

Old South, New South: Revolutions in the Southern Economy since the Civil War (New York: Basic Books, 1986),

80, table 3.10. For Franklin D. Roosevelt‘s remarks, see Bruce J. Schulman, From Cotton Belt to Sunbelt: Federal

Policy, Economic Development, and the Transformation of the South, 1938-1980 (New York: Oxford University

Press, 1991), 3. For the South as a colonial economy, see ibid., 6-8; and Pete Daniel, Standing at the Crossroads:

Southern Life in the Twentieth Century (New York: Hill & Wang, 1986), 48-49. For northern investment, see C.

Vann Woodward, Origins of the New South, 1877-1913 (1951; Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press,

1990), 115-29. For World War II, see Schulman, From Cotton Belt to Sunbelt, 94-99.

    Hugh L. White, ―Balancing Agriculture with Industry,‖ Address of Hon. Hugh L. White, Governor of Mississippi

before the Annual Convention of the Mississippi Press Association at Gulfport, Miss., June 12, 1936, pp. 6-10, esp.

12, ―White, Hugh L. (1936-1940), Speeches, 1936-1940‖ folder, series 918, Governors Records, RG 27, State

Records (Mississippi Department of Archives and History, Jackson). For challenges to Balance Agriculture with

Industry (BAWI), see Ernest J. Hopkins, Mississippi’s BAWI Plan: An Experiment in Industrial Subsidization

(Atlanta: Federal Research Bank of Atlanta, 1944), 61, note 24; and James C. Cobb, The Selling of the South: The

Southern Crusade for Industrial Development, 1936-1990 (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1993), 20-21. For

state income data, see Eric C. Clark, ―Legislative Adoption of BAWI, 1936,‖ Journal of Mississippi History, 52

(Nov. 1990), 285. For BAWI plants before and during the war, see Hopkins, Mississippi’s BAWI Plan, 52, 7-8, 53-


    Tami J. Friedman, ―‗Exploiting the North-South Differential: Corporate Power, Southern Politics, and the Decline

of Organized Labor after World War II,‖ Journal of American History, 95 (Sept. 2008), 329-30, 331-32.

    State of Mississippi, Balance Agriculture with Industry: Mississippi 1944 Law, House Bill 176 (Jackson:

Mississippi Agricultural and Industrial Board, 1944), 8.

    David Markstein, ―Advertising Helps to Balance State‘s Agriculture with Its Industry,‖ Printers Ink, March 1,

1946, esp. 75; Hodding Carter, ―Nation‘s Largest Rug Makers Will Provide $2-3 Million Payroll,‖ Delta Democrat-

Times, Dec. 18, 1950, p. 1, 1950-1953 Scrapbook, vol. 2, George F. Archer Papers (William Alexander Percy

Memorial Library, Greenville, Miss.); advertisement, ―Business Lives on Payrolls,‖ Delta Democrat-Times, Jan. 8,

1951, p. 5; ―Plant Tangible Evidence of Progressive Spirit of City,‖ ibid., Dec. 24, 1950, p. 1; ―Appliance Leader

Backs Bonds,‖ ibid., Jan. 9, 1951, p. 1; ―VFW Head Voting for Plant,‖ ibid., Dec. 28, 1950, p. 1; ―Power Official

Backs Plant,‖ ibid., Jan. 1, 1951, p. 1; ―Women Back Carpet Plant,‖ ibid., Jan. 3, 1951, p. 1; ―Delta Council Happy

Over Carpet Plant,‖ ibid., Jan. 14, 1951, esp. 1; ―Working Man Lauds Plant,‖ ibid., Jan. 5, 1951, esp. 1.

    ―Rounds Favors Plant,‖ Delta Democratic Times, Dec. 31, 1950, esp. 1; Sallie Willis, ―City-Wide Campaign to

Pass Bond Issue Set Up,‖ ibid., Dec. 29, 1950, p. 1; ―Colored Folk Help on Bond Expenses,‖ ibid., Jan. 14, 1951,

esp. 1. ―City Hall is Lone Voting Place for the Bond Election,‖ ibid., Jan. 14, 1951, p. 1; Betty Werlein Carter

interview by author, New Orleans, La., March 4, 1996, audiotape (in author‘s possession); ―Officials Exuberant at

Overwhelming Vote Given to Bond Issue,‖ Delta Democrat-Times, Jan. 16, 1951, p. 1, 1950-1953 Scrapbook,

Archer Papers; ―Bond Vote Setting New City Record,‖ Delta Democrat-Times, Jan. 15, 1951, esp. 1, ibid.

    Leo Troy, Distribution of Union Membership among the States, 1939 and 1953 (New York: National Bureau of

Economic Research, Inc., 1957), 4-5, table 1; ―2 More Important City Groups Back the Bond Issue,‖ Delta

Democrat-Times, Jan. 4, 1951, p. 1; United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe

Fitting Industry . . . Local 618, advertisement, ―VOTE FOR THE BOND ISSUE,‖ ibid., Jan. 12, 1951, p. 2; ―Union

Leader Throws His Full Backing to Bonds,‖ ibid., Jan. 11, 1951, p. 6.

    Cobb, Selling of the South, 21-22, 28, 15; Hopkins, Mississippi’s BAWI Plan, 19-20, 9. Carter, ―Nation‘s Largest

Rug Maker Will Provide $2-3 Million Payroll.‖

    ―Single Picket Marching by Greenville Mills,‖ Delta Democrat-Times, March 25, 1952, p. 1; ; ―Police and Trucks

at Picketed Plant,‖ ibid., March 26, 1952, p. 1; ―More Workmen Stay Off Jobs at Greenville Plant,‖ ibid., March 27,

1952, p. 1; ―Greenville Citizens Appeal to Strikers,‖ ibid., May 19, 1952, esp. 1; ―Union Calls Off Carpet Mill

Pickets,‖ ibid., May 20, 1952, esp. 1.

     For Alexander Smith‘s impact in Greenville, see Hodding Carter, ―Expansion Is Slated for Greenville Mills,‖

Delta Democrat-Times, June 25, 1954, p. 1; ―Greenville Mills Spends $2,000,000 in Area during Year,‖ Mississippi

Magic: The BAWI Bulletin, 10 (March 1955); ―County Assessments in 1954 Going Up, Up,‖ Delta Democrat-

Times, July 11, 1954, p. 1; Alexander Smith Inc., Report of Annual Stockholders Meeting, May 20, 1955,

―Alexander Smith, Yonkers, NY, Financial & General II, 1950-‖ folder, box 343, MSS 396, Textile Workers Union

of America (TWUA) Records (Wisconsin Historical Society, Madison); ―Greenville Mills‘ Expansion Here Equals

Two Industries,‖ Delta Democrat-Times, Oct. 3, 1956, 1954-1956 Scrapbook, vol. 4, Archer Papers. ―Alex. Smith

Paid $597,609 for New Mill,‖ Retailing Daily, July 23, 1954, ―Alexander Smith, Inc., Liberty, S.C.‖ folder, box

343, TWUA Records. For Greenville Mills employees, see William J. McQueen interview by author, Greenville,

Miss., Dec. 28, 1995, audiotape (in author‘s possession), side 1; Willard Street interview by author, Greenville,

Miss., Feb. 10, 1996, ibid., side 1; Ken Kramer to William Pollock, Jan. 7, 1955, accordion file, box 96, MSS 396,

TWUA Records; Walter Lindsey interview by author, Greenville, Miss., Jan. 1, 1996, audiotape (in author‘s

possession), side 1; Robert Lang interview by author, Greenville, Miss., Feb. 8, 1996, ibid., sides 1 and 2; Matthew

Johnson Sr. interview by author, Greenville, Miss., Jan. 14, 1996, ibid. For Greenville‘s growth, see Hodding Carter,

―The Hegira of Alexander Smith,‖ Sales Management, Feb. 15, 1956, p. 38.

     Greenville City Council, Minute Book 30, March 15, 1951, pp. 191-92 (Greenville City Council, Greenville,

Miss.); ibid., March 28, 1951, p. 215; C. S. Tindall Jr. to William Barksdale, March 17, 1953, ―Greenville: Cert. No.

104, 9/26/50 (Greenville Mills)‖ folder (Mississippi Department of Economic and Community Development,

Jackson); ―Carpet Firm‘s Head Praises Greenville,‖ Delta Democrat-Times, Jan. 24, 1951, pp. 1, 2; John W. and

Sally Kirk Baskin interview by author, Greenville, Miss., Jan. 18, 1996, audiotape (in author‘s possession), side 2,

tape 1; ―Top Ten to be Elected C of C Directors from 20,‖ Delta Democrat-Times, Nov. 15, 1953, p. 1; ―Seven

Washington Countians on MEC Committees to Meet, ibid., May 12, 1954, p. 16; Herbert J. Potts interview by

author, Fairhope, Ala., March 3, 1996, audiotape (in author‘s possession), tape 1, side 2.

     Hopkins, Mississippi’s BAWI Plan, 11-14; Cobb, Selling of the South, 8-10. White, ―Balancing Agriculture with

Industry,‖ esp. 6.

     For the postwar organizing campaigns, see Kendrick Lee, ―Labor Organization in the South,‖ Editorial Research

Reports, May 29, 1946, pp. 375-78, ―Southern Legacy: ‗Economic Dominion‘ ‖ folder, box 47, Hodding and Betty

Werlein Carter Papers (Special Collections Department, Mitchell Memorial Library. Mississippi State University.


     Mississippi Agricultural and Industrial (A&I) Board advertisement, ―There‘re Folks in Mississippi, Not Census

Figures,‖ New York Times, Feb. 5, 1947, p. 38; A&I Board advertisement, ―A Sixth Flag Over Mississippi,‖ ibid.,

Aug. 6, 1947, p. 37; N. E. Wingate to Gordon Carson, Aug. 22, 1949, ―Selby Shoe Company‖ folder, ―M-Z,

Industrial Prospects Transfer‖ box, Greenville Area Chamber of Commerce (GACOC) Records (Greenville Area

Chamber of Commerce, Greenville, Miss.); Leonard C. Yaseen to William F. C. Ewing, June 22, 1950, esp. 1-2,

attached to Mississippi survey (copy in author‘s possession, courtesy Deloitte, Chicago).

     Eugene Albert Roper Jr., ―The CIO Organizing Committee in Mississippi: June, 1946-January, 1949‖ (M.A.

thesis, University of Mississippi, 1949), 64-81, esp. 66-67 and 70 and 80; Hopkins, Mississippi’s BAWI Plan, 39,

table 3, esp. 40-41.

     ―Why Labor Opposes House Bills 792, 793 & 794: An Address Delivered by Holt Ross before the House Labor

Committee,‖ Mississippi Labor Federationist, March 17, 1950, esp. 1, Oversize Newspapers, Holt E. Ross Papers

(Special Collections Department, Mitchell Memorial Library).

     Mississippi State Industrial Union Council, ―What Is Your Stake in labor Laws?,‖ leaflet, [1954], ―Right to Work

Laws, 1951-1959‖ folder, box 2220, ―Subject Files, 1947-1986‖ series, Mississippi State AFL-CIO Records, 1947-

1986 (Southern Labor Archives, Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University, Atlanta).

     Robert W. Starnes, ―Mississippi Gets a Boost from the CIO,‖ Southern Labor, 1 (Feb. 1949), 14-15, ―CIO,

Atlanta, GA‖ folder, box 41, MSS 346, TWUA Records.

     Hodding Carter, ―Southern Towns and Northern Industry,‖ Atlantic Monthly, 184 (Nov. 1949), 48-51, esp. 50 and

51, ―Publications, Undated—1949‖ folder, box 55, Carter Papers; Hodding Carter to Lucy Randolph Mason, March

13, 1950, ―HC: Correspondence: 1950: M (March-April)‖ folder, ―Correspondence, 1950, D-R‖ box, ibid.; editorial,

―For the Greatest Good,‖ Delta Democrat-Times, May 21, 1952, p. 1.

     William T. Edwards, Staff Representative, United Steelworkers of America, AFL-CIO, advertisement, ―An

Appeal to the People of Greenville,‖ [Delta Democrat-Times?], [1961-1962], ―Right to Work Laws, July-October

1960‖ folder, box 2220, ―Subject Files, 1947-1986‖ series, Mississippi State AFL-CIO Records; ―Dear Chamber

Member,‖ [1961-1962], ―Industrial Relations Program‖ folder, ―1966: General A-Z‖ box, GACOC Records.

     ―AN OPEN LETTER TO: Our Fellow Citizens at Carrick Products Company,‖ [1961], attached to C. E. Landrum

to Edgar Fain, Feb. 9, 1962, ―Edgar Fain‖ folder, GACOC Records; ―Summary of NLRB Industrial Elections at

Greenville,‖ attached to C. E. Landrum to Edgar Fain, Feb. 19, 1962, ibid.; ―Union Calls Off Election at Gypsum,‖

Delta Democrat Times, March 22, 1961, partially reprinted in ―Greenville Enjoys a Good Business Climate,‖ news

clipping montage attached to Landrum to Fain, Feb. 9, 1962; ―Gypsum Company to Hike Wages,‖ Delta Democrat-

Times, March 23, 1961, partially reprinted in ibid.; ―Gypsum Unveils Plan for $Multi-Million Addition,‖ Delta

Democrat-Times, Nov. 21, 1961, ―U.S. Gypsum Company‖ folder, ibid.; Greenville Chamber of Commerce,

Industrial Foundation, advertisement, ―Congratulations to the Employees of U.S. Gypsum Company, Greenville

Plant,‖ [Nov. 26, 1961], ibid.

     George F. Archer to the Citizens of Greenville, Mississippi, ―Proclamation,‖ [April 1962], ―Industry Appreciation

Week‖ folder, GACOC Records; ―Special Week to Mark City Industrial Growth,‖ Delta Democrat Times, 1962-

1963 Scrapbook, vol. 6, Archer Papers; ―Industry Role Stressed at Kiwanis Club,‖ Delta Democrat-Times, April 18,

1962, ―Industry Appreciation Week‖ folder, GACOC Records; ―Greenville Mills Part of World‘s Largest Carpet

Making Company,‖ Delta Democrat-Times, April 8, 1962, ibid.; ―Mosow Screw Makes 10,000 Products and Still

Growing,‖ Delta Democrat-Times, April 8, 1962, ibid.; ―Gypsum‘s $2 Million Payroll is Vital Economic Factor to

City,‖ Delta Democrat-Times, April 9, 1962, ibid.; ―Auto Makers Look to Carrick Products Co. for Vital Parts,‖

Delta Democrat-Times, April 11, 1962, ibid.; ―Atkins Saw Co. City‘s Newest ‗Good Citizens,‘‖ Delta Democrat-

Times, April 13, 1962, ibid.; Delta Department Store, advertisement, ―Greenville Industries: We Salute You!‖ Delta

Democrat-Times, April 12, 1962, ―Industry Appreciation Week Clippings‖ folder, ibid.; Fred‘s Discount Stores,

advertisement, ―We Salute the Industries of Greenville,‖ Delta Democrat-Times, April 11, 1962, ibid.; Joe Franko,

―Disputed Votes Hold Key to Atkins Saw Election,‖ Delta Democrat-Times, June 3, 1962, attached to Mary

Thompson to Claude [Ramsay], June 10, 1962, ―Greenville CLU, 1958-1978‖ folder, box 2161, ―CIO and AFL-

CIO, 1952-1985‖ series, Mississippi State AFL-CIO Records; Atkins Saw Division, Borg-Warner Corporation and

United Steelworkers of America, AFL-CIO, 148 NLRB 949, 951 (1964).

     For firms failing to meet obligations, see ―Industrial Foundation Backs Bond Issue Plan,‖ Delta Democrat-Times,

May 21, 1965, ―Mid-States Metal Products Co.‖ folder, GACOC Records.; ―Factory in Delta since 1958,‖ Delta

Democrat-Times, Aug. 29, 1976, ibid.; and Cobb, Selling of the South, 62-63. For higher-end firms, see Mississippi

Economic Council, Industrial Development Study Committee, ―Mississippi‘s Industrial Development—What About

Its Future,‖ [1965], 1-2, ―Mississippi Economic Council 1965‖ folder, GACOC Records. For the referendum, see

Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Renaldo, ―Let People Do Own Deciding,‖ Delta Democrat Times, [Aug. 24, 1970], ―County

Industrial Organization‖ folder, ibid.; and ―Voters Turn Down Industrial Levy,‖ Delta Democrat-Times, p. 1. For the

annexation, see Douglas L. P. Hamilton to Greenville Industrial Foundation, Jan. 3, 1969, ―Annexation Program‖

folder, GACOC Records; William T. Wilcox to Fred McCourt, Jan. 17, 1969, ibid.; R. L. Peterson to Fred McCourt,

Jan. 4, 1969, ibid.; V. W. Adamski to Fred McCourt, Jan. 3, 1969, ibid.; Russell E. Hutton to Industrial Foundation,

Jan. 6, 1969, ibid.; Fred McCourt to Patrick A. Dunne, Jan. 7, 1969, ibid.; and Judy Sims, ―City Council Okays

Massive Annexation,‖ Delta Democrat-Times, June 18, 1969, p. 1, ―Greenville, Miss-City Council‖ folder, Vertical

Files (Percy Memorial Library). For unionism, see remarks of S. D. Guthrie, ―2:00 p.m., Monday, April 25, 1966/C.

S. Tindall—Jake Stein,‖ untitled conference notes, April 25-29, 1966, ―1962 Chamber Program‖ folder, GACOC


     U.S. Bureau of the Census, Statistical Abstract of the United States: 1986, 106th ed. (Washington: U.S.

Government Printing Office, 1985), 457, table 765; U.S. Bureau of the Census, Statistical Abstract of the United

States: 1992, 112th ed. (Washington: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1992), 439, table 688; Cobb, Selling of the

South, esp. 281; Robert H. Zieger, ―Introduction,‖ in Organized Labor in the Twentieth-Century South, ed. Robert

H. Zieger (Knoxville: the University of Tennessee Press, 1991), esp. 5 and 6.

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