|Text on Button||A OF M|
Illustration of measuring tools on a background with red white and blue petal shapes and a blue outer edge
|Back Paper / Back Info||
Same symbol that is on the front is in the metal on the back
The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers was founded in 1888 by 19 machinists in Atlanta, Georgia. Thomas Talbot organized 18 of his fellow workers and voted to form a trade union. At this time, machinists earned 20-25 cents an hour and worked ten-hour days. Employers were hostile to organized labor during that period so the order met in secret for several years. The term, “boomers,” referred to men that traveled the railway lines looking for work, spreading the word about the union. It wasn’t long until there were 189 lodges organized. Over the next century, the union member numbers continued to grow, and the organization eventually affiliated with the International Metalworkers Federation. Today, their membership numbers are over 800,000.