Wholesale Clothing Clerks Union Local 158, ACWA

Blue silk with gold lettering, borders, fringe, tassels and a simple design top and bottom. The rest of the lettering reads: A.C.W. of A. Chartered 1933, and the central logo is ACWA.

There is a maker’s mark on the back of the banner reading Union Made, Kraus & Sons 11 East 22nd Street NY.

The blue material instead of the red found on most of the other clothing workers’ banners may echo a previous affiliation of the clerks’ local, or possibly could indicate an effort to assert a distance from the left wing of the labor movement during the McCarthy era.

This local included stock clerks, shipping clerks, marchers and men engaged in incidental occupations. A 1940 history recounts the story of clerks working 60–70 hours a week for as little as $8 per week, and of an organizing drive that moved quickly during the depression year of 1933, culminating in the inclusion of the clerks in a $14 general minimum wage mandated by the New Deal’s National Industrial Recovery Act.

45″ x 28″
Possibly 1950s

Kheel Center, Cornell University