Labor Leader Spotlight: Eugene Debs

As part of Kill Your Darlings Candle Company’s 8-8-8 Labor Day Sale, we’re profiling individuals whose contributions have had an immense impact on the labor movement within the United States and beyond.

We’re kicking off this eight-day series with none other than Eugene Debs.

Debs first became widely known for his involvement in the 1894 Pullman Strike, during which workers for the Pullman Palace Car Company fought for the restoration of cut wages that came about as a result of the Panic of 1893. It also aimed to reduce the rent charged to Pullman employees who lived in company-sponsored communities, as these rents did not fall when wages were cut.

Debs’s involvement in the Pullman Strike ultimately led to a boycott of Pullman train cars and concessions on the part of president Grover Cleveland, including the establishment of Labor Day.

Debs would go on to found Industrial Workers of the World and run for president five times.

We’re thankful for the efforts of labor leaders like Eugene Debs, and we’ll be back tomorrow to put the spotlight on another individual we have to thank for their advocacy on behalf of the working class.

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