People’s University to Explore Wheeling’s Labor History

Wheeling was a hotbed of unionism throughout its industrial period. In observation of the 250th anniversary of Wheeling’s founding, People’s University at the Ohio County Public Library will explore that industrial history, focusing on the experiences of the working class and the rise and organization of labor unions.

The five-class series will meet at 7 p.m. in the library’s auditorium on Tuesday evenings beginning Aug. 6, 2019. Instructors will include Dr. David Javersak, Dr. Hal Gorby and Patrick Cassidy.

The schedule includes:

• Class 1: Aug, 6: Early Industry and the Roots of Labor Organization, with instructor Dr. David Javersak

• Class 2: Aug, 13: The Ohio Valley Trades & Labor Assembly, with instructor Dr. David Javersak

• Class 3: Aug, 20: The 1931 Coal Strike, with instructor Dr. Hal Gorby

• Class 4: Aug, 27: The Reuthers, with instructor Patrick Cassidy

• Class 5: Sept, 3: Progressive Ownership: Wheeling’s Tobacco Industry, with instructor Dr. David Javersak

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In keeping with the mission of public libraries as sanctuaries of free learning for all people, the Ohio County Public Library created The People’s University, a free program for adults who wish to continue their education in the liberal arts. The People’s University features courses — taught by experts in each subject — that enable patrons to pursue their goal of lifelong learning in classic subjects such as history, philosophy, and literature.

The City of Wheeling is observing its sestercentennial or 250th anniversary of its founding this year. In 1769 the Zane brothers — Ebenezer, Jonathan and Silas — claimed their land grant by tomahawk right and established the settlement that was to become Wheeling. Wheeling 250 provides the opportunity to celebrate our “bright future and treasured heritage.” People’s University: Wheeling’s Labor History is part of a yearlong calendar of events related to the Wheeling 250 observation.

For more information about People’s University — Wheeling 250: Wheeling’s Labor History, contact the library programming coordinator at 304-232-0244 or visit the reference desk.