Union Boys "U.A.W.-C.I.O."
Written by Butch Hawes

I was hangin' 'round a defense town one day, one day,
When I thought I overheard a soldier say, soldier say:
"Every tank in my camp
Has that UAW stamp
And I'm UAW too, I'm proud to say."


It's that UAW-CIO makes the army roll and go
Turnin' out the jeeps and tanks, the airplanes ev'ry day
It's that UAW-CIO makes that army roll and go
Puts wheels on the USA

(Repeat after each verse)

I was there when the union came to town.
I was there when old Henry Ford went down.
I was standing by the Gate Four
When I heard the people roar:
"They ain't gonna kick the auto workers around."

I ws there on that cold December day,
When we heard about Pearl Harbor far away.
I was down in Cadillac Square
When the union rallied there
To put those plans for pleasure cars away.

There'll be a union label in Berlin,
When the union boys in uniform march in.
And rolling in the ranks
There'll be UAW tanks
Roll Hitler out and roll the union in.

The Union Boys--Burl Ives, Tom Glazer, Alan Lomax, Brownie McGhee, Pete Seeger, Sonny Terry, and Josh White--was a high powered group brought into the studio in March 1944 by Alan Lomax (1915-2002) to record a number of labor-oriented songs. They never performed publicly as a group. Some of the songs were issued by Asch Records as Songs For Victory, including U.A.W.-C.I.O., written by Butch Hawes, that once again tied together union organizing, in this case the United Automobile Workers, and victory over Germany, combined with a slight history of the union.

Illustration: Songs For Victory: Music For Political Action (Asch Records 346, 1944)

© Copyright Labor Arts Inc.