On May 21, Labor’s International Hall of Fame inducted longtime Teamsters General President Daniel J. Tobin at its 2015 Induction Ceremony. In honor of the visionary labor leader’s long-deserved induction, the Teamsters History Project honored Tobin’s life and legacy.
Over 45 days, the Teamsters Union took a look at each of his 45 (1907-1952) years as Teamsters General President Daniel Tobin’s story is in large part the story of the American labor movement during the tumultuous first half of the 20th century. For most American workers of the period, earning a living meant toiling for long hours for near slave wages.
Tobin arrived in America at such a time. An Irish immigrant, he, like so many others, came to the United States seeking economic opportunity lacking in his homeland. Instilled with a keen intellect and a passion for fairness, Tobin would rise from the workers’ ranks to lead the International Brotherhood of Teamsters with a clearheaded, balanced approach that allowed the organization to thrive.
As General President, Tobin saw the union grow from 38,905 to 1,120,245 members, giving the Teamsters a power base unequaled by other labor organizations. With the union as his springboard, he would venture into national labor politics, becoming one of the most influential labor leaders of his time.
For more information about Tobin, visit teamster.org/dan-tobin-45-years-service.