Labour History

An Ambivalent Relationship: Thomas Caddy, the Drapers’ Association and the Sydney Trades and Labor Council’s Forgotten Cooperation over Early Closing

Labour History (2016), 110, (1), 19–33.

Abstract

Attempts by retail workers to limit their hours of employment through campaigns for the early closing of shops have received only limited attention. Yet, Sydney’s drapery community played a longstanding and prominent role in this movement. In the 1880s, Thomas Caddy helped foster an alliance, now completely forgotten, between the Drapers’ Association and the Sydney Trades and Labor Council to campaign for early closing by moral suasion. These moves ended in failure and revealed the problems associated with using moral suasion tactics, the fluidity of early worker affiliations, the strengths and limitations of early peak union councils and the changing status of workers within the drapery trade.

Access Token
£25.00
READ THIS ARTICLE
If you have private access to this content, please log in with your username and password here

Footnotes

*The authors would like to thank the two anonymous referees and the editorial staff ofLabour History, particularly Peter Sheldon, for their helpful comments and assistance. Google Scholar

1.Kylie Hilton, Sydney Trades Hall(:Unions NSW, 2006), 10–12. Google Scholar

2. Sydney Morning Herald (SMH), 7 October1885, 6;ibid., 8 October1885, 2. Google Scholar

3.Wilfred Barnett Whitaker, Victorian and Edwardian Shopkeepers: The Struggle to Obtain Better Conditions and a Half-Holiday(:David and Charles, 1973);Michael Quinlan,Margaret Gardner andPeter Akers, “A Failure of Voluntarism: Shop Assistants and the Struggle to Restrict Trading Hours in the Colony of Victoria, 1850–85,” Labour History, no. 88(May2005):165–82;Michael Quinlan andMiles Goodwin, “Combating the Tyranny of Flexibility: Shop Assistants and the Struggle to Regulate Closing Hours in the Australian Colony of Victoria, 1880–1900,” Social History 30, no. 3(2005):342–65;Bradley Bowden, “‘Harmony … between the Employer and Employed’: Employer Support for Union Formation in Brisbane, 1857–90,” Labour History, no. 97(November2009):105–22. Google Scholar

4.N. B. Nairn, “The Role of the Trades and Labor Council in NSW, 1871–1891,” Historical Studies 7, no. 28(1957):421–40;Bede Nairn, Civilising Capitalism: The Beginnings of the Australian Labor Party(:Australian National University Press, 1973);Raymond Markey, The Making of the Labor Party in New South Wales, 1880–1900(:University of NSW Press, 1988);Raymond Markey, “The Labor Council of NSW, 1871–2001,”inPeak Unions in Australia, ed.Bradon Ellem,Raymond Markey andJohn Shields(:Federation Press, 2004), 54–85. Google Scholar

5.Greg Patmore, “Working Lives and Regional Australia: Labour Historians and Labour History,” Labour History, no. 78(May2000):2. Google Scholar

6.Quinlan,Gardner andAkers, “A Failure of Voluntarism,” 179. Google Scholar

7.Peter Bailey, “White Collars, Gray Lives? The Lower Middle Class Revisited,” Journal of British Studies 38, no. 3(1999):273–90. Google Scholar

8.Gail Reekie, “Humanising Industry: Paternalism, Welfare and Labour Control in Sydney’s Big Stores, 1890–1930,” Labour History, no. 53(November1987):1–19;Gail Reekie, Temptations: Sex, Selling and the Department Store(:Allen and Unwin, 1993). Google Scholar

9.Historians writing about the TLC in 1885–86 have never mentioned Caddy or the Drapers’ Association; see, for example,Nairn, “The Role of the Trades and Labor Council,” 435–37, andBruce Mansfield, Australian Democrat: The Career of Edward William O’Sullivan, 1846–1910(:Sydney University Press, 1965). Google Scholar

10.Whitaker, Victorian and Edwardian Shopkeepers, 33;Quinlan,Gardener andAckers, “Failure of Voluntarism,” 171–73. Google Scholar

11.John Shields, “Deskilling Revisited: Continuity and Change in Craft Work and Apprenticeship in Late Nineteenth Century New South Wales,” Labour History, no. 68(May1995):9–15. Google Scholar

12.Catherine Bishop, Minding Her Own Business: Colonial Businesswomen in Sydney(:New South, 2015), 38. Google Scholar

13.Gail Reekie, “Humanising Industry,” 4–5;John Bradley Pragnell, “Selling Consent: From Authoritarianism to Welfarism at David Jones, 1838–1958”(PhD diss.,University of NSW, 2001), 78–82. Google Scholar

14. SMH, 7 August1880, 16, for examples of job advertisements. Google Scholar

15.Gail Reekie, “Humanising Industry,” 4. Google Scholar

16.Quinlan,Gardener andAckers, “Failure of Voluntarism,” 169. Google Scholar

17. Sydney Monitor and Commercial Advertiser, 31 December1840, 4. Google Scholar

18.Quinlan,Gardener andAckers, “Failure of Voluntarism,” 171;Bowden, “Harmony … between the Employer and Employed,” 112. Google Scholar

19.Whitaker, Victorian and Edwardian Shopkeepers, 174. Google Scholar

20.Quinlan andGoodwin, “Tyranny of Flexibility,” 345–49. Google Scholar

21. Evening News, 8 March1882, 3;SMH, 13 July1882, 6;Ibid., 25 August1882, 3. Google Scholar

22. SMH, 5 October1880, 6. Google Scholar

23.Reekie, “Humanising Industry,” 1–19. Google Scholar

24. Empire, 6 June1871, 3. Google Scholar

25.Quinlan andGoodwin, “Tyranny of Flexibility,” 363. Google Scholar

26.There is no mention of Stephen’s involvement in the early closing movement inM. Rutledge, “Stephen, Sir Alfred, (1802–1894)”inAustralian Dictionary of Biography, vol. 6(:Melbourne University Press, 1976), 456–57. Google Scholar

27. Evening News, 6 October1883, 4;Ibid., 28 November1883, 4. Google Scholar

28. SMH, 27 August1874, 4. Google Scholar

29. Ibid., 30 June1880, 2. Google Scholar

30. Australian Town and Country Journal, 17 July1880, 7. Google Scholar

31.Shirley Fitzgerald, Rising Damp: Sydney 1870–1890(:Oxford University Press, 1989), 246. Google Scholar

32.Markey, Making of the Labor Party, 41–43. Google Scholar

33. SMH, 8 March1882, 5;Freeman’s Journal, 8 July1882, 9. Google Scholar

34.Pragnell, “Selling Consent,” 94. Google Scholar

35.Reekie, “Humanising Industry,” 2–4. Google Scholar

36.Pragnell, “Selling Consent,” 86–87;Evening News, 17 December1884, 6. Google Scholar

37. Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser, 30 October1862, 3. Google Scholar

38. Ibid., 11 August1866, 5. Google Scholar

39. Ibid., 16 June1866, 3;ibid., 18 June1867, 3. Google Scholar

40. Newcastle Chronicle, 2 January1873, 20. Google Scholar

41. SMH, 7 November1878, 11. Google Scholar

42. Ibid., 10 May1883, 10. Google Scholar

43. Ibid., 17 March1883, 11. Google Scholar

44. Ibid., 7 June1883, 20. Google Scholar

45. Ibid., 20 July1883, 10. Google Scholar

46. Evening News, 8 June1883, 3. Google Scholar

47. SMH, 21 July1883, 10. Google Scholar

48. Ibid., 2 November1883, 5. Google Scholar

49.Bowden, “Harmony . between the Employer and Employed,” 107–108;Clem Lloyd, Profession-Journalist: A History of the Australian Journalists’ Association(:Hale and Iremonger, 1985), ch. 1. Google Scholar

50.Nairn, “The Role of the Trades and Labor Council,” 421; compared withDan Weinbren andBob James, “Getting a Grip: The Role of Friendly Societies in Australia and Britain Re-Appraised,” Labour History, no. 88(May2005):87–103. Google Scholar

51.Markey, “The Labor Council,” 55–56. Google Scholar

52.Ray Markey, “Explaining Union Mobilisation in the 1880s and Early 1890s,” Labour History, no. 83(November2002):24;Bailey, “White Collars, Gray Lives,” 275. Google Scholar

53. Minutes of General Meeting of Trades and Labor Council 1880–91, 23 October1884, Reel 2, Noel Butlin Archives, Australian National University, Canberra. Google Scholar

54. SMH, 17 April1885, 4. Google Scholar

55. The “Trades Hall Committee” was a press name for the Trades and Industrial Hall and Literary Institute Association. Google Scholar

56.Hilton, Sydney Trades Hall, 13. Google Scholar

57. SMH, 12 December1884, 5. Google Scholar

58. Ibid., 17 December1884, 6. Google Scholar

59.Mansfield, Australian Democrat, 59. Google Scholar

60. SMH, 17 April1885, 4;Ibid., 22 September1885, 5. Google Scholar

61. Ibid., 31 October1885, 9. Google Scholar

62. Evening News, 30 October1885, 4. Google Scholar

63.Quinlan and Goodwin, “Tyranny of Flexibility,” 348;Michael Cannon, Life in the Cities: Australia in the Victorian Age, vol. 3(:Thomas Nelson, 1975), 283. Google Scholar

64. SMH, 4 November1885, 10. Google Scholar

65. Ibid., 6 November1885, 3. Google Scholar

66. Evening News, 12 November1885, 5;Ibid., 16 November1885, 4. Google Scholar

67. The Age, 4 November1885, 5;Mercury, 14 November1885, 1. Google Scholar

68.Neither Caddy nor Foy raised religionper seduring the dispute. Google Scholar

69. Evening News, 11 November1885, 6. Google Scholar

70. SMH, 14 November1885, 14. Google Scholar

71. Ibid., 17 November1885, 2. Google Scholar

72. Ibid., 18 November1885, 13. Google Scholar

73. Ibid., 20 November1885, 11. Google Scholar

74. Ibid., 9 December1885, 9. Google Scholar

75. Minutes of General Meeting of Trades and Labor Council 1880–91, 17 December1885. Google Scholar

76.Nikola Balnave andGreg Patmore, “The Politics of Consumption and Labour History,” Labour History, no. 100(May2011): 146 especially. Google Scholar

77.Markey, “The Labor Council,” 58. Google Scholar

78. SMH, 25 January1886, 15. Google Scholar

79. The Globe, 30 March1886, 3. Google Scholar

80. Ibid., 26 March1886, 4. Google Scholar

81.Markey, Making of the Labor Party, 172–73. Google Scholar

82.Mansfield, Australian Democrat, 71. Google Scholar

83. Globe, 12 March1886, 8;SMH, 21 April1886, 10. Google Scholar

84. SMH, 22 May1886, 10. Google Scholar

85. Ibid., 3 July1886, 11. Google Scholar

86. Minutes of General Meeting of Trades and Labor Council 1880–91, 14 August1886. Google Scholar

87. Evening News, 28 January1895, 3. Google Scholar

88. Ibid., 19 November1886, 3. Google Scholar

89.Pragnell, “Selling Consent,” 128–31. Google Scholar

90.On the 1899 legislation seeLaurence Frederic Fitzhardinge, That Fiery Particle: A Political Biography of William Morris Hughes, Volume 1, 1862–1914(:Angus and Robertson, 1978), 63, 73–77;Markey, Making of the Labor Party, 222–24;Nairn, Civilising Capitalism, 192–93. Google Scholar

91. SMH, 9 September1895, 7. Google Scholar

92. Ibid., 23 January1886, 7. Google Scholar

93. Ibid., 20 March1888, 11. Google Scholar

94. Ibid., 24 March1888, 11. Google Scholar

95. Evening News, 19 January1903, 4;Ibid., 13 March1903, 3. Google Scholar

96. SMH, 11 June1929, 15. Google Scholar

If you have private access to this content, please log in with your username and password here

Details

Author details

Bastian, Peter

Quayle, Victor