Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Legacy Department



Grant, Roger

Committee Member

Saunders , Richard

Committee Member

Grubb , Alan


The Boston and Sandwich Glass Company closed its factory in 1888 after a bitter labor dispute. This study focuses on the perception of the workers by the press, Sandwich citizens, and themselves. The history of the union was similar to others in the nineteenth century. It began as a local organization and eventually joined the American Flint Glass Workers' Union, a national organization. Press coverage of the labor crisis tended to focus on the well-being of Sandwich as a community, generally blaming the AFWGU and the Manufacturers' Association for meddling in local community affairs. The workers and the company did not tend to be assigned responsibility for the crisis. Later authors tended to write about the incident as it was viewed in the popular memory of Sandwich. They generally portrayed the event as it was covered by the press, sympathizing with workers and blaming Pittsburgh interests for the downfall of the company. This thesis aims to tell the story of the Sandwich glass workers and their union, and how the union played a crucial role in the collapse of the glass industry in the town. More specifically, it tries to explain how the union viewed itself and its changing status, and how the larger Sandwich community saw the workers, and how they were key factors in the crisis.