Document 13: Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association to Chinese Ladies' Garment Union, Golden Gate Manufacturing Co., and National Dollar Stores, Ltd., 17 March 1938, ILGWU Collection, MJ F1, Labor Archives and Research Center, San Francisco State University.


   About two weeks into the strike, a notable Chinatown organization, the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association (commonly known as the Chinese Six Companies) offered to mediate the dispute. Officers of the organization wrote to the union and both companies offering its "good offices" to help bring about "an early restoration of industrial peace." There is little evidence that either side took up this proposal, other than a mention of the offer in a Chinese Digest article published the following month (see Document 16). The offices and the procedures of the National Labor Relations Board played a much more significant role in the settlement of the strike in early June. Despite the apparent failure of this effort at conciliation, the very fact that leaders of the Chinese Six Companies made the effort is an indication that the strike was a significant threat to the fabric of the Chinatown community.

Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association
(Chinese Six Companies)

March 17, 1938

Chinese Ladies' Garment Workers Union
No. 341, I.L.G.W.U.
San Francisco, California

Golden Gate Manufacturing Co.
San Francisco, California

National Dollar Stores, Ltd.
San Francisco, California

Dear Sirs:

   In view of the fact that the industrial dispute involving the Chinese Ladies' Garment Workers Union, No. 341, I.L.G.W.U., San Francisco, California, Golden Gate Manufacturing Co., San Francisco, California, and National Dollar Stores, Ltd., San Francisco, California, has been in existence for some time and this dispute has a vital bearing on the economic welfare of the entire Chinese Community of San Francisco, the Chinese Six Companies has appointed an Industrial Peace Committee to look into the possibilities for an early solution of the difficulties involved. The aim of this Committee is purely to offer whatever good offices that may be acceptable to all parties concerned. The spirit of the Committee is entirely voluntary and is actuated by an earnest desire to help bring about an early restoration of industrial peace on a basis satisfactory and equitable to all.

   Bearing in mind this spirit of the Committee, it will be appreciated if you will entertain a similar spirit towards its efforts. In this connection, we are calling on you, with the other members of this Committee, to learn from you your point of view regarding the matter on hand.

   With kindest regards and earnest hopes for early industrial peace, we are,

Very truly yours,
Chin Lain, Chairman

C. T. Chiu, Secretary
Industrial Peace Committee


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