After six weeks of tedious negotiations and a scattering of strikes (19,000 miners out in 235 mines), the soft-coal miners and operators signed a new contract. On its face it was a give & take proposition. Actually it was a fair victory for the miners and their shaggy, barrel-shaped boss, John L. Lewis, who had asked for a lot and wound up by getting quite a little.
The operators agreed to:
¶ A wage increase averaging $1.25 to $1.30 a day.
¶ A hike in vacation pay from $50 a year to $75. (Because stocks of coal are critically low,...