A Chevrolet Centennial

Bettmann / CORBIS

The Auto Workers Union
In 1936-37, workers at GM participated in a sit-in strike, which the nascent United Auto Workers Union called for in response to unfair working conditions and low wages as the country began to recover from the Great Depression. The strike, which eventually attracted police presence and involvement from the National Guard, is widely considered to have established the legitimacy of the UAW and the unionization (and improvement in working conditions) of the automobile industry. This photo from February 2, 1937, shows the later stages of the strike in front of Chevrolet Parts Plant No. 9, in Flint, Michigan.

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