American Federation of Labor Annual Meeting

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This episode is from the WNYC archives. It may contain language which is no longer politically or socially appropriate.

Speeches at the 87th annual meeting. Martin Lacey introduces Mayor O'Dwyer, who gives an impassioned talk about the importance of labor to democracy.

Tom Murray, New York State Federation of Labor president, [the governor enters the room during the speech, which causes commotion] goes over the history of the AFL.

Governor Dewey comments on the threat of communism, Formosa, the "communist timetable," and the United Nations. Lobs questions about the country's current defense systems and levels and involvement in Korea. "I do ask total planning - which is now absent - vastly accelerated production of arms and trained cadres to operate them, so that if and when we do mobilize, we will be wholly effective." "We must be physically ready at all times, and even more importantly, spiritually ready, to resist a peril that we really understand." "We all of us in the United States of America are only 1/15th of this world. We need friends, and we need friends who have confidence in our leadership and faith in our ideals. We need friends in vast numbers who believe as we do, or we will not survive." Everyone against communism must band together to fight it; the United Nations is the vehicle for that.

Cowan provides commentary between speeches.

Audio courtesy of the NYC Municipal Archives WNYC Collection

WNYC archives id: 69656
Municipal archives id: LT851