All Lobby DiLorenzo, Joe Maiorielli and thousands of their pals wanted was an extra 16 cents an hour. The administration at the American Locomotive Co. in Schenectady decided against the raise. That’s when Lobby, Joe and thousands of other ALCO employees decided to go on strike. The labor trouble began for real on Wednesday, Jan. 24, 1951, when management laid off 2,850 workers. One thousand other employees left their jobs in protest; 600 office workers joined the group and took unexpected time off. Wage issues were at the heart of the disagreements. Production and office workers in Locals 2054 and 3180, United Steelworkers of America, voted to strike at midnight on Jan. 31 if ALCO refused larger paychecks. That’s what happened. About 4,000 people stayed off their job until March 9 —
A.J. Feulner, chief shop steward at Alco, is all smiles after the United Steelworkers union ended its 37-day strike against the company on March 9, 1951.
Members of the Steelworkers Union break strike news to the American Locomotive Co. on Jan. 24, 1951. Men were seeking a pay increase of 16 cents per hour; they would stay off their jobs until March to get it. (Gazette file photos/Sid Brown and Charles Sellers)
Three employees of ALCO are armed with signs and oversized lock and key, indicating trouble is coming for the Schenectady company. From left are Andrew Napolitano, Lobby DiLorenzo and Moe Rosenfeld.
Joe Maiorielli, a chipper in the ALCO diesel shop, shaves off the beard he started on Jan. 31,the day the United Steelworkers union began its strike against the locomotive giant. Joe gave his beard the brush on March 9, the day the union voted to end the strike.
ALCO employees gather for a group shot during a group demonstration against the company on Jan. 24.
A couple of ALCO guys have smiles in January 1951, but union members are not in great moods with a strike imminent.