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Who was Mother Jones?

  When Mother Jones was mocked as the “grandmother of all agitators,” in the U.S. Senate, she  replied that she would someday like to be called “the great-grandmother of all agitators.”

 

Born Mary Harris in Cork Ireland in 1837, she was an immigrant refugee who lost her entire family in a pandemic, then lost everything in the Chicago Fire of 1871. 

Hear Mother Jones Speak (1 minute)

She became a rebel for justice, and became known simply as "Mother Jones," the mother of the working class.   An icon of labor history, she organized against child labor, for workers rights, and helped to shape a spirit of civil disobedience in the cause of justice.  Mother Jones  believed that a workers movement would replace “this moneyed civilization with a higher and grander civilization for the ages to come.” To learn more, including a short documentary about her, see :

 
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Chicago Mother Jones Statue

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All text copyright 2007-2020,  Mother Jones Heritage Project , a 501-c-3 non-profit, unless otherwise stated. Our materials come from a variety of sources. Users must contact us, or the rights holders, to use  images or similar media. Contact us with any questions about our projects, questions about Mother Jones, or suggestions. We will get back to you by phone within minutes in most cases. If it is urgent, call 815-754-4750.