B.L.F.E. Re-Echo Lodge #195 Records, Montpelier, Idaho, 1884-1950  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Title
B.L.F.E. Re-Echo Lodge #195 Records, Montpelier, Idaho
Dates
1884-1950 (inclusive)
Quantity
23 boxes, (15 linear feet)
Collection Number
USU_CAINE MSS 22
Summary
Records from this railroad union from 1884-1950. Included are lodge meeting minutes, correspondence, grievance reports and financial records.
Repository
Utah State University, Merrill-Cazier Library, Special Collections and Archives Division
Special Collections & Archives
Merrill-Cazier Library
Utah State University
Logan, UT
84322-3000
Telephone: 435-797-8248
Fax: 435-797-2880
scweb@usu.edu
Access Restrictions

No restrictions on use, except: not available through interlibrary loan.

Languages
English
Sponsor
Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant, 2007-2008


Biographical NoteReturn to Top

The history of the labor movement in the Western United States is one dominated by the unions representing the major industries such as mining and railroading. The papers in Caine collections 22-24 chronicle railroad union activity on the Oregon Shortline (later the Union Pacific) of Idaho, Utah, and Oregon. Specifically the collections contain records from the Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen, which later became the Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen and Enginemen; the Women's auxiliary to the Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen and Enginemen; and the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen. These records were found together in the Oddfellows Hall in Montpelier, Idaho, at which location the unions held their regular meetings. The records span the period from 1884 through 1954.

Construction of the Oregon Shortline Railroad, a subsidiary of the Union Pacific Railroad, began in 1881 and was finished in 1884. The line left the mainline of the U.P. at Granger, Wyoming and joined the Oregon Railway and Navigation Company line at Huntington, Oregon. By the end of 1882, the company had built 330 miles of track. The route of the road came through Montpelier, so that in 1883 this Idaho farming community became a division point for the railroad. By the turn of the century a shop and roundhouse had been built in the Idaho town. Town histories indicate that the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers established a lodge in 1883. Another union, the Brotherhood of Locomotive of Firemen's Re-Echo Lodge 195 moved their headquarters from Shoshone, Idaho to Montpelier in 1887. The earliest records in this collection chronicle the B.L.F.'s Re-Echo Lodge 195 and date back to 1884 when the lodge was headquartered in Shoshone, Idaho.

he railroad was a boon to Montpelier and became the main employer of that town into the 1950's. However, as trains became faster and more powerful and as engines changed from steam power to diesel, the need for a large railroad work force in Montpelier declined. By the 1950's many of the union men were moved to the divisional headquarters in Pocatello.

These railroad labor records cover important periods for the American labor movement. They document union activity through two world wars as well as the Great Depression. They also describe a period in which railroad employment played a key role in small western towns such a Montpelier, Idaho. In addition, the papers recount the difficulties of a manufacturing type of industry blending into a religious farming community.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The records of the Re-Echo Lodge 195 cover the most extensive time period and contain the most complete record of activity of the three lodges. The Re-Echo records begin in 1884 and continue through 1950. The 1884 date is significant because it is only seven years after the general strike of 1877 that destroyed the American labor movement. This collection contains minute books, financial records, correspondence files, grand lodge publications, and reports from the general chairman's association, usually affiliated with grievance issues. The lodge also served as the parent lodge for members who worked in Kemmerer, Wyoming.

The earliest records are holographic ledgers that include meeting minute books and financial records. The minute books begin in 1884 and end in 1942. They record the meetings of the lodge, which were held on a weekly basis. The financial ledgers begin in 1886 and continue into the 1930's. These records document payment of dues and the purchase of insurance policies. The financial records also show the interaction between the local, regional, and national organizations.

The lodge files make up the bulk of the collection. These files contain a variety of documents—correspondence, reports, receipts, etc. These files have been kept in their original filing order, which was chronological. The local correspondence consisted primarily of issues addressed are primarily non-payment of dues or need of extension on dues payments. Otherwise, the correspondence tends to be between the lodge secretary and the regional representative. Much of this correspondence involves grievances brought by the union against the railroad company. In addition, the files contain material pertaining to legislative action taken by the union. The union established the Idaho Legislative Council in the 1930's that became the political arm of the union.

Finally, the collection contains a variety of reports from the different union committees. Included are the Chairman's Association, joint union meetings, and Idaho or Central Division Grievance Committee. Most of these documents concern grievances brought by the union against management and report upon how they were resolved.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances.

Permission to publish material from the B.L.F.E. Re-Echo Lodge #195 Records, Montpelier, Idaho must be obtained from the Special Collections Manuscript Curator and/or the Special Collections Department Head.

Preferred Citation

Initial Citation: B.L.F.E. Re-Echo Lodge #195 Records, Montpelier, Idaho USU_CAINE MSS 22, Box [ ]. Special Collections and Archives. Utah State University Merrill-Cazier Library. Logan, Utah.

Following Citations:USU_CAINE MSS 22, USUSCA.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top


Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Minute books from the Re-Echo Lodge # 195, 1884-1942Return to Top

(14 volumes)
Container(s) Description Dates
Book 1
1884-1942
Box
1
Book 2
1888-1895
1
Book3
1895-1903
1
Book4
1903-1905
1
Book5
1906-1912
1
Book 6
1912
1
Book 7
1913
1
Book 8
1914-1915
1
Book 9
1915-1925
1
Book 10
1925-1927
1
Book 11
1928-1930
1
Book 12
1931-1934
1
Book 13
1936-1940
1
Book 14
1941-1942

Financial ledgers, 1884-1925Return to Top

(11 volumes)

NOTE: There is no BOOK 1

Container(s) Description Dates
Box book
2 2
Account Book
1886-1900
2 3
Account Book
1903-1906
2 4
Account Book
1903-1906
2 5
Account Book
1904-1906
2 6
Receiver Account Book
1902-1903
2 7
Grand & Subordinates dues
1884-1887
2 8
Receiver's Register
1888-1889
2 9
Treasurer's Cash Register
1903-1904
2 10
Membership rosters
1884-1906
2 11
Attendance record
1917-1925

Financial ledgers, 1887-1942Return to Top

(3 volumes)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box book
3 1
Financier's ledger
1887-1906
3 2
Treasurer's cashbook
1939-1942
3 3
Secretary's cashbook
1936

Lodge files, primarily correspondence, 1905-1932Return to Top

(18 folders)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
4 1
1905
4 2
1906
4 3
1907
4 4
1920
4 5
1922
4 6
1923
4 7
1924 July & October
4 8
1924 November & December
4 9
LaFollette-Wheeler Presidential Campaign
1924
4 10
1928
4 11
1930
4 12
January-March, 1931
4 13
April-June, 1931
4 14
July-September, 1931
4 15
October-December, 1931
4 16
January-March, 1932
4 17
April-June, 1932
4 18
July-September, 1932

Lodge files, primarily correspondence, 1933-1936Return to Top

(16 folders)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
5 1
January-March, 1933
5 2
April-June, 1933
5 3
July-September, 1933
5 4
October-December, 1933
5 5
January-March, 1934
5 6
April-June, 1934
5 7
July-September, 1934
5 8
October-December, 1934
5 9
January-March, 1935
5 10
April-June, 1935
5 11
July-September, 1935
5 12
October-December, 1935
5 13
January-March, 1936
5 14
April-June, 1936
5 15
July-September, 1936
5 16
October-December, 1936

Lodge files, primarily correspondence, 1937-1939Return to Top

(15 folders)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
6 1
January-March, 1937
6 2 & 3
April-June, 1937
6 4
July-September, 1937
6 5
October-December, 1937
6 6
January-March, 1938
6 7
April-June, 1938
6 8
July-September, 1938
6 9
October-December, 1938
6 10
C.G. Anderson Case, 1938
6 11
January-March, 1939
6 12
April-June, 1939
6 13
July-September, 1939
6 14
October-December, 1939
6 15
Testimonial Dinner to David B. Robertson
1939

Lodge files, primarily correspondence, 1940-1942Return to Top

(12 folders)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
7 1
January-March, 1940
7 2
April-June, 1940
7 3
July-September, 1940
7 4
October-December, 1940
7 5
January-March, 1941
7 6
April-June, 1941
7 7
July-September, 1941
7 8
October-December, 1941
7 9
January-March, 1942
7 10
April-June, 1942
7 11
July-September, 1942
7 12
October-December, 1942

Lodge files, primarily correspondence, 1943-1950 Return to Top

(16 folders)
Container(s) Description
Box Folder
8 1
Salt Lake Yard agreement, 1943
8 2
January-March, 1943
8 3
April-June, 1943
8 4
July-September, 1943
8 5
October-December, 1943
8 6
January-May, 1944
8 7
January-March, 1945
8 8
April-June, 1945
8 9
July-September, 1945
8 10
October-December, 1945
8 12
July-December, 1946
8 13
January-June, 1947
8 14
July-December, 1947
8 15
1948
8 16
Amalgamation question, 1950

Official Grand Lodge publicationsReturn to Top

(17 folders)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
9 1
Circulars
1922-1929
9 2
Circulars
1930-1931
9 3
Circulars
1932-1933
9 4
Circulars (Amalgamation report)
1935
9 5
Circulars
1937 & 1939
9 6
Circulars
1940-1948
9 7
Flyers & Bulletins
1929
9 8
Flyers & Bulletins
1931-1932
9 9
Flyers & Bulletins
1933-1934
9 10
Flyers & Bulletins
1936-1937
9 11
Flyers & Bulletins
1938-1939
9 12
Flyers & Bulletins
1941-1942
9 13
Flyers & Bulletins
1943-1944
9 14
Flyers & Bulletins
1945-1946
9 15
Flyers & Bulletins
1948
9 16
Flyers & Bulletins
1949
9 17
Flyers & Bulletins
1950

General Secretary & Treasurers reports from the Grand Lodge of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen & Engineers, 1900-1940Return to Top

(14 folders)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
10 1
Treasurers report
1900-1901
10 2
Treasurers Assessment Bulletins
1906-1907
10 3
Monthly Report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1922
10 4
Monthly Report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1927
10 5
Monthly Report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1928
10 6
Monthly Report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1930
10 7
Monthly Report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1931
10 8
Monthly Report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1932
10 9
Monthly Report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1933
10 10
Monthly Report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1934
10 11
Monthly Report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1937
10 12
Monthly Report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1938
10 13
Monthly Report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1939
10 14
Monthly Report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1940

General Secretary & Treasurers reports from the Grand Lodge of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen & Engineersand monthly bulletins, 1940-1950, 1920-1929Return to Top

(16 folders)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
11 1
Quarterly report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1941
11 2
Quarterly report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1942
11 3
Quarterly report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1943
11 4
Quarterly report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1945
11 5
Quarterly report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1946
11 6
Quarterly report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1947
11 7
Quarterly report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1948
11 8
Quarterly report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1949
11 9
Quarterly report of the General Secretary Treasurer
1950
11 10
Bulletins
1920
11 11
Bulletins
1924
11 12
Bulletins
1925
11 13
Bulletins
1926
11 14
Bulletins
1927
11 15
Bulletins
1928
11 16
Bulletins
1929

Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen & Enginemen, Bulletins, 1930-1937Return to Top

(10 folders)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
12 1
1930
12 2
1931
12 3
1932
12 4
January-June, 1933
12 5
July-December, 1933
12 6
January-June, 1934
12 7
July-December, 1934
12 8
1936
12 9
January-June, 1937
12 10
July-December, 1937

Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen & Enginemen, Bulletins, 1938-1941Return to Top

(8 folders)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
13 1
January-June, 1938
13 2
July-December, 1938
13 3
January-June, 1939
13 4
July-December, 1939
13 5
January-June, 1940
13 6
July-December, 1940
13 7
January-June, 1941
13 8
July-December, 1941

Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen & Enginemen, Bulletins, 1942-1950Return to Top

(11 folders)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
14 1
January-June, 1942
14 2
July-December, 1942
14 3
January-June, 1943
14 4
July-December, 1943
14 5
1944
14 6
1945
14 7
1946
14 8
1947
14 9
1948
14 10
1949
14 11
1950

Monthly assessments sent from Re-Echo 195 to the Grand Lodge, 1903-1943Return to Top

(13 folders)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
15 1
1903-1907
15 2
1936
15 3
1937
15 4
1938
15 5
1939
15 6
1940
15 7
1940
15 8
1941
15 9
1942
15 10
1942
15 11
1942
15 12
1943
15 13
1943

Monthly, quarterly, and annual reports sent from Re-Echo 195 to the Grand Lodge, 1946-1974Return to Top

(23 folders)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
16 1
Monthly reports
1946
16 2
Monthly reports
1947
16 3
Monthly reports
1948
16 4
Monthly reports
1949
16 5
Quarterly reports
1937
16 6
Quarterly reports
1938
16 7
Quarterly reports
1939
16 8
Quarterly reports
1940
16 9
Quarterly reports
1941
16 10
Quarterly reports
1942
16 11
Quarterly reports
1943
16 12
Quarterly reports
1944
16 13
Quarterly reports
1945
16 14
Quarterly reports
1946
16 15
Quarterly reports
1947
16 16
Quarterly reports
1948
16 17
Quarterly reports
1949-1951
16 18
Annual reports
1927, 1930-1931, & 1936-1938
16 19
Annual reports
1939-1940
16 20
Annual reports
1941-1942
16 21
Annual reports
1943-1944
16 22
Annual reports
1945-1946
16 23
Annual reports
1946-1974

Quarterly reports from the General Chairman's office of the Idaho District of the B.L.F.E., 1930-1936 (incomplete)Return to Top

(16 folders)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
17 1
October, 9, 1930
17 2
January 22, 1931
17 3
July 17, 1931
17 4
November 3, 1931
17 5
April 1932
17 6
October 11, 1932
17 7
July 15, 1932
17 8
January 10, 1933
17 9
May 10, 1933
17 10
July 10, 1933
17 11
October 16, 1933
17 12
January 18, 1934
17 13
May 5, 1934
17 14
January 7, 1935
17 15
April 23, 1936
17 16
October 15, 1936 and April 6, 1937

Reports from the General Chairman's Association Meetings, the Western Line, Central District & National meetings, 1933-1937Return to Top

(24 folders)

Folders 1-8 contain reports from the General Chairman's Association of the Union Pacific Railroad System.

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
18 1
September 10 1934
18 2
March 12, 1935
18 3
September 9, 1935
18 4
October 23, 1936
18 5
April 7-8, 1937
18 6
February 9-20, 1939
18 7
March 31-April 10, 1942
18 8
January 12-29, 1945
18 9
Western Line
(Folders 10-14 contain reports from joint meetings of general committees from the Order of Railroad Conductors, Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen & Enginemen, and the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers. These reports are from the Western Line, or the central district of the Union Pacific Railroad.)
November 22, 1933
18 10
January 10, 1946
18 11
June 2, 1936
18 12
January 8, 1937
18 13
January 8, 1937
18 14
January 8, 1937
18 15
Report about the diesel-electric situation
1937 March 8
18 16
1946
18 17
1946
18 18
National agreements
18 19
Minutes of the 6th West Coast Union meeting
1936 June 24-25, 1939 July 14-16, and 1932 August 30-31
18 20
Report of delegate, Lodge 195—31st convention
1928
18 21
Report of delegate—34th convention
1941 July
18 22
Emergency board wage decision with letters from W. Phillips
1941
18 23
Payments to men
1942
Folder
24
Agreements between the Oregon Shortline and Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen & Enginemen
1932-1936

General Grievance committee minutes for the Idaho or Central Division of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen & Enginemen, 1931-1945Return to Top

(18 folders)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
19 1
January 8, 1931
19 2
November 7, 1931
19 3
April 6, 1933
19 4
March 6, 1934
19 5
December 2-3, 1935
19 6
January 3, 1936; March 7, 1936; and June 20, 1936
19 7
March 18, 1937
19 8
January 14 1938 and July 13, 1938
19 9
January 9, 1939 and June 19, 1939
19 10
January 8, 1940
19 11
January 6, 1941 and September 7, 1941
19 12
March 3, 1942 and May 17, 1942
19 13
June 23, 1943 and January 25, 1943
19 14
January 29, 1943
19 15
January 9, 1945; September 23, 1945; and August 14, 1945
19 16
January 12, 1948
19 17
Meeting concerns wage issues
January 29, 1937
19 18
Grievance committee treasurers reports
1934-1948

Reports form the General Chairman of the Oregon Shortline and U.P. Central District, Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen & Enginemen, 1924-1943 (incomplete) Return to Top

(20 folders)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
20 1-5
1924-1926
20 6-8
1927
20 9
November 21, 1931
20 10-11
1933-1934
20 12
(Folders 13-20 contain records of the B.L.F.E.’s Idaho Legislative Board)
June 1942-September 1943
20 13
1930-1931
20 14
1932
20 15
1933
20 16
1934
20 17
1935
20 18
1937
20 19
1940-1946
20 20
1947

Miscellaneous records from RE-Echo 195, 1894-1950Return to Top

(23 folders)
Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
21 1
Applications for exercise of options
1941
21 2
Minutes
1937 October 9
21 3
Lodge 195 ballots
ca 1930
21 4
Bank Statements
1940
21 5
Bank Statements
1941
21 6
Bank Statements
1942
21 7
Bank Statements
1943
21 8
Bank Statements
1950
21 9
Applications for membership and transfer of memberships
1941-1942
21 10
Membership roster
1918-1920
21 11
Miscellaneous documents (‘The Railroad Evangelist,” receipts, and beneficiaries certificates)
21 12
Traveling cards
1894-1900
21 13
Traveling cards
1903-1906
21 14
Transfer card
1903-1906
21 15
Returns from the joint protective board assessment

Box 22: Receipts for dues payments, 1948-1952Return to Top

(23 books)

Miscellaneous pamphlets and broadsides, 1924Return to Top

Container(s): Box 23

(6 items)

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Subject Terms :
  • Railroads--Employees--Labor unions--Idaho
  • Railroads--Employees--Labor unions--Utah
  • Railroads--Employees--Labor unions--Wyoming
  • Personal Names :
  • Bohi, Alvin
  • Eschler, Rube
  • Hughes, William
  • Phillips, W. L.
  • Robertson, David B.
  • Ross, Ben C. 1876-1946
  • Corporate Names :
  • Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers
  • Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen
  • Order of Railway Conductors of America
  • Oregon Short Line Railroad
  • Switchmen's Union Of North America
  • Union Pacific Railroad Company
  • Geographical Names :
  • Idaho--Politics and government
  • Kemmerer (Wyo.)--History
  • Montpelier (Idaho)--History
  • Pocatello (Idaho)--History
  • Salt Lake City (Utah)--History