132nd Anniversary Commemoration of Historic Workers’ Killings Set May 6


Bay View Tragedy event scheduled near site

Scene from re-enactment of 1886 event from 2017 ceremony.

More than 200 are expected to attend the 132nd Anniversary Commemoration of the Bay View Tragedy at 3 p.m., Sunday, May 6, to recall the killingof seven persons participating in a march for the eight-hour-day on May 5, 1886.  The event which was to become the bloodiest labor event in Wisconsin history came as some 1500 workers marched toward the huge Bay View Rolling Mills on the shores of Lake Michigan and were fired upon by the State Militia.

The event, named the Bay View Tragedy, will be commemorated at the State Historical Marker site on the corner of S. Superior St. and E. Russell Ave. in Milwaukee’s Bay View neighborhood.

A re-enactment of the event, complete with larger than life-sized puppets, will be staged by actors under a production of Barbara Leigh, former director of the Milwaukee Public Theatre.  There will be musical performances by prominent Milwaukee folksinger Craig Siemsen and additional music by drummer Jaymes Finlayson.

Pam Fendt, president of the Milwaukee Area Labor Council, will give remarks, linking the 1886 event to today’s issues.

This will mark the 32nd consecutive year in which the anniversary commemoration has been held, all under the sponsorship of the Wisconsin Labor History Society, with additional support from the Bay View Historical Society and the Wisconsin State AFL-CIO.  In recent years, crowds of up to 300 persons have attended.

The event is free and open to the public.

Further information may be obtained by contacting Ken Germanson, event coordinator, at keng@wisconsinlaborhistory.org.  For background information, go to http://www.wisconsinlaborhistory.org/resources/bay-view/