Archive ID: 1981-051-21

Blast Furnace Orchestra

Date Created: undated

Created By: U.S. Steel

Donor: William Ferry

Media Type: Photograph

Language: English


At various points, U. S. Steel organized activities for employees including sports teams and singing groups. Such activities were seen by managers as a way to create good will towards the mills (and not incidentally, as historians noted, dispel desire for unions). Pictured here is the Blast Furnace Band, also known as Garrett’s Orchestra, in 1918. The South Works Review, a plant magazine, published a number of stories about the group. A June 1918 article began a list of members by noting, “This orchestra consists of the following Blast Furnace Department boys and their work cannot be too highly praised.” This particular photograph was published in the October-November, 1920 issue of South Works Review. After unionization in the 1930s, unions increasingly took over sponsorship of social activities.

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Community Life   Mills   Other   South Works   Steel Industry   Steel Labor   Other/Unknown   South Chicago   Other/Unknown   Photograph   1981-051   Bands   Banjos   Carnegie-Illinois Steel   Drums   Industry   Instruments   Labor   Mills   Music   Musicians   Oboes   Orchestras   Organs   Photograph   Photographs   South Chicago   South Works   Steel   Steel industry   Steelworkers   Trombones   Trumpets   U.S. Steel   Violins   Workers