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Description of Book Project

My book is entitled A Tower of Strength in the Labor World: Nannie Helen Burroughs and the National Training School for Women and Girls and it is under contract with Georgetown University Press.


My manuscript centers Burroughs as a major labor leader of the 20th century by documenting her labor philosophies and political organizing. Burroughs, a Black clubwoman, educator, and civil rights activist, co-founded the first national domestic workers’ labor organization, established one of the largest trade schools for Black women in the early 20th century, and created one of the first national Black women’s labor periodicals in US history.

In the book, I trace Burroughs' expansive and multi-scale labor project developed in women’s spaces (i.e. schools and clubwomen’s organizations) to better the working and living conditions of Black women and their families in the twentieth century. I believe that Black women's schools and organizations offer important guides for labor justice movements today. 

Group of students at the National Trade School. Courtesy of the Library of Congress, Nannie Helen Burroughs papers
Source: Nannie Helen Burroughs Papers, Library of Congress
Nannie Helen Burroughs
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