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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with George Perkel, May 27, 1986. Interview H-0281. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

American Textile Workers Union as a motivated and innovative group

Perkel describes the American Textile Workers Union as a group of highly motivated and innovative organizers.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with George Perkel, May 27, 1986. Interview H-0281. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) in the Southern Oral History Program Collection, Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Full Text of the Excerpt

GEORGE PERKEL:
Let me also throw in a few other thoughts on the Union's performance. The Textile Union has been an unusually high-performance organization, in the sense that, even though we were never one of the major unions, because of the nature of the task that we faced, of organizing one of the most down-trodden groups of workers in the country, it was a natural magnet and attraction to people who were devoted to that task and who were interested in that task to come to us and join with us. So we had an unusually well-motivated and effective group of people trying to organize. And, not only did we have that, but we were constantly seeking new approaches. Unlike many organizations who don't succeed, we didn't settle back and say, well, we can't do it. It's impossible. We were constantly trying new approaches to organizing. We were one of the first to use opinion polling to try to find out more systematically and scientifically what our problems were, how people were feeling, what their attitudes were, what they were worried about, what they were afraid about, and what we could do to offset these obstacles.