I guess the thing that used to bother some of the guys a lot of the time, is when the strikes would come up, and they'd want to know who's gonna pickett, or how you picked the people to picket, and stuff like that, you know. Well, the uh... union committeemen and your chairmen of your different committees uh... knew the people in the shop that they could trust most, you know, and these were the people that you picked for be uh... captain for the day, or captain one day a week, for on pickett duty or you got charge of this detail, and you got charge of that detail, and so on and so forth. You always pick people that are sympathetic or favorable for these jobs, you don't pick a guy that says the union is uh... no good or they're rotten, or I wouldn't do this, just cause they say, or something like that, you know.

I always enjoyed pickett duty, I always enjoyed the strike time, I always prepared for the strike time. For example, how did I do it? Well, I couldn't save a whole lot of money, and I was just as poor as the other guy almost, but we always knew that we had to have another contract and we always had to keep our union, and uh... these are the things that guys that were intersted in the union always would think about; we can't go back to the old days.

Show Transcript Speaker: Robert Gibbs. Interviewed by U-M Flint Labor History Project. Date of interview: 5-29-1980. Edited by Michael Van Dyke.

Copyright: ©2002 Michigan State University.