Men constructing University Club

Workers pose in front of the University Club, 803 State St., Madison, in 1920 while the building was under construction.

This State Journal editorial ran on May 23, 1919:

Assemblyman Marcus Johnson, (R-Madison), made a good fight for the 8-hour law. It lost.

But Marcus Johnson and not the assemblymen who voted against his bill is on the winning side. The 8-hour day is here. Even newspapers that have editorially opposed the 8-hour day have been compelled to adopt it themselves.

The 8-hour day in the industrial world is an established economic fact, which only the out-of-dates can deny. A man only exhibits himself as a relic when he opposes this basic industrial principle.

It does not apply to farmers, nor could this bill be defeated on the theory that it carried technical injustices in places. It has been suggested that it interfered with individual gardeners, and one thing and another.

The intelligent attitude is to strengthen its workability by amendment and not to seek excuses to kill that which is recognized as industrially sound.

The 8-hour day is winning and will win. Its out-of-date opponents are so far behind the time that they are powerless to check, regardless of whether it receives legislative sanction.

The 8-hour day is here, and those who cannot see that which is right in front of their own nose in broad daylight are simply blind. That’s all.

Capital W: Plug in to Wisconsin politics

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