By J. Jamakaya
In 2001, we celebrated the centennial year of Ironworkers Local 8. However, while researching Local 8's history, we discovered that Milwaukee Ironworkers were actually organized by 1896, making us five years older than we thought!
Our official celebration was based on the charter issued by the International Association of Bridge and Structural Ironworkers of America on February 1, 1901 to the Housesmiths and Bridgemen's Local Union No. 8 of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Although the words "Housesmith's and Bridgemen's" were dropped long ago, that charter still hangs proudly in the board room of Local 8's office in Milwaukee.
A little more digging revealed, however, that an earlier charter was issued to Local 8 on June 26, 1896 by the National Association of Bridge and Structural Ironworkers. This was the name our International used before it formally adopted the term "International" at its convention in 1900. The following year, under its new title, the International reissued charters to many of its locals, including the one in Milwaukee.
Download the complete written history of Iron Workers Local 8 by J. Jamakaya.