Past Event

Mother Jones and the Making of American Labor Unions

A Road Scholar Program by Simon Cordery

Mary Harris "Mother" Jones (1837-1930) was one of America’s most compelling orators. She worked as a union organizer, speaking honest truths to ordinary people and traveling incessantly around the United States and into Mexico and Canada. This presentation discusses her life and her career. Her many connections to Illinois are explored, including surviving the 1871 Chicago fire, participating in coal miners’ strikes, and speaking across the state. She is buried in the miners’ cemetery in Mount Olive. By viewing her life in the context of labor and women’s history, Simon Cordery illustrates how one woman overcame incredible tragedy to create a career for herself.

This event is Free and Open to the public. For more information, please contact Eve G. Kirk, 815.332.5161.