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Texas Labor History

Texas Labor Archives

If you have questions about the Texas Labor Archives, please contact Gary Spurr at spurr@uta.edu or (817) 272-7511

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Union Labor History 1

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CWA 6201 History

CWA 6201 Information stored in the Texas Labor Archives at the UTA Library

(The historical sketch listed below came from the UTA Library Labor archives)

Blanche Wells Papers at UTA Library

The first organization of telephone employees in Fort Worth was the company-sponsored Southwestern Bell Telephone Employees Association. In 1937, some of the employees of Southwestern Bell in Fort Worth organized as Local 3028 of the Southwestern Telephone Workers Union. This Union became affiliated with the National Federation of Telephone Workers (NFTW) when it formed in 1939. The HFTW had organizational weaknesses, and did not survive the "divide and conquer" strategy of AT&T Corp. while negotiating a settlement to a strike in 1947. A new national union, the Communications Workers of America (CWA), organized later in 1947. The members of Local 3028 voted to join the CWA, and their group became CWA, Local 2003. The first two numbers of the local indicated it was in Division 20 of the national union. When the national organization restructured in about 1950, Texas became part of District 6, and the Fort Worth local became Local 6201. Texas was seperated from District 6 in 1974. The state was designated as District 12, and the name of the Fort Worth local changed to 12201. The national CWA reorganized again in 1986, and Texas rejoined District 6. Local 12201 was renamed Local 6201. The local originally met in a rented Southwestern Bell meeting room. To be more independent of their employer, meetings were moved to other locations. The local bought a building in 1973 at 421 S. Adams.

Most of the members of Local 6201 worked for Southwestern Bell Telephone Company or AT&T Corp., formally known as American Telephone and Telegraph Company. Southwestern Bell was a subsidiary of AT&T. Southwestern Bell operated in Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas. CWA, District 6 is composed of these same states. Southwestern Bell was part of AT&T until 1984. Because of an anti-trust suit the U.S. Government brought against AT&T, the company divested itself of the Bell subsiaries. Divestiture ended the possibility of national negotiations between CWA and the Bell System.

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Union History