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Hormel P-9 Union Strike of 1985: Primary Sources: Archives & Records


Minnesota Department of Public Safety. Commissioner’s Office, Subject Files. 
The subject files include documents from the Austin, MN Police Force, Governor Perpich, and the Commissioner of Public Safety discussing the use of the National Guard at the Hormel Plant as well as a folder of newspaper clippings relating to the strike. 
MNHS call number: Digital Finding Aid

Papers Relating to Hormel Strike Support Groups
Includes background materials, correspondence and related papers, legal files, newsletters, newspaper clippings, magazine articles, printed materials, flyers, a few snapshot photographs, and the script of a play. The materials were gathered by Peter J. Rachleff and David J. Riehle, active supporters of the strike. Extensive minutes and related papers document the activities of the main support group, the Metro Area Hormel Workers Support Committee. Newspaper clippings, newsletters, and ephemera contain information on the other support groups. There is a large file of newspaper and magazine articles taken largely from left-wing publications.
MNHS call number: Digital Finding Aid

Pamphlets Relating to Labor Disputes in Minnesota
Contains pamphlets and printed ephemera relating to labor disputes, strikes and lockouts, secondary boycotts, arbitration and related issues.
MNHS call number: HD5306- HD5481

Bill Brust Papers.
Brust's papers document his life and career as a Minnesota Trotskyite and modern language scholar. His "Political Activities and Writings" include a series of memoranda and other papers related to his arrest during the Local P-9 strike at the Hormel meat packing plant in Austin (1986).
MNHS call number: Digital Finding Aid

Kenneth E. Tilsen Papers.
This collection consists of legal files for selected cases documenting Tilsen's career as an attorney in St. Paul, including the legal aftermath of the 1985-1986 Hormel meatpackers strike (Hansen v. Guyette and the Austin Labor Center case).  Tilsen's cases concern a dispute between the Local P-9 and Joseph Hansen, the trustee appointed for the Local P-9 by the International in May 1986. Much of the dispute focused on control of the Local P-9's headquarters, the Austin Labor Center. Tilsen represented the Austin Labor Center, Inc., and the Local P-9 members in these cases, which were eventually dismissed or settled. Files consist primarily of a chronological series of pleadings, affidavits, orders, and other court documents. In addition the series includes correspondence, interrogatories, and research files. The correspondence files include color snapshots of the Austin Labor Center mural, which was destroyed by vandals during the legal dispute.
MNHS call number: Digital Finding Aid

Oral Histories

United Packinghouse Workers of America Oral History Project Interviews, 1985-1986
Includes interviews with Hormel and other workers in Austin, and Cudahy, Swift, Armour and other workers in South Saint Paul, Minn.
MNHS call number: HD8039.P15 H67 1985


Boycott Hormel: Live from Austin, produced by Larry Long and Carrie Gerendasy.
Minneapolis, Minn.: Waterfront Records, c1986.
52-minute cassette
This cassette contains songs relating to the strike and comments by striking workers, plus a list of Hormel products to boycott on the container.
MNHS call number: Audiotape no. 27 

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