Edward T. Pollack Fine Arts



Avery, Sewell. SIGNED LETTER RE THE MONTOGOMERY-WARD LABOR DISPUTE. Typed letter on Montgomery Ward Letterhead stationery, 11 x 8 1/2 inches, dated January 25, 1943, and signed by Avery in ink, thanking a supporter for his approval of Montgomery Ward's "stand on the closed shop," and suggesting that "your representatives in Congress...are the men to whom we must look for the correction of these labor abuses." In excellent condition. Sewell Avery, 1874-1960, was a prominent Chicago businessman, who, in 1943, was President of Montgomery Ward. In that position, he was a central figure in the labor dispute which is referred to in this letter. Here, from Wikipedia, is a summary: "During World War II, Avery repeatedly opposed actions of Roosevelt's National War Labor Board and opposed labor unions.[13] He resisted signing a contract after a union had won representation for 7,000 of Montgomery Ward's employees until twice ordered by Roosevelt. When Avery refused to settle a strike in 1944, endangering the delivery of essential goods, Roosevelt's administration used emergency measures to remove him from office and temporarily seize the company; in April 1944 two National Guard men had to pick him up by an arm each and carry him out of his office.[14][15][16] Avery yelled at the Attorney General, who had flown to meet with him and try to avert a showdown, "To hell with the government, you... New Dealer!" The photo of Avery being forcibly removed from his office, was iconic in its day. 

Inv num: 12980