Join us on March 13, 2023 for two events celebrating the legacy of Clarence Darrow

On Monday, March 13th, two events will explore the 125th Anniversary of the Woodworkers’ Strike and the Labor Movement today.

Our annual commemoration of the life and work of Clarence Darrow this year focuses on Darrow’s 1898 defense of the organizers of woodworkers. Darrow argued that the case was a battle for human liberty, the rich and powerful against the weak, the use of the law to bring righteous men to prison, and against child labor.

We will have two events:

At 10 a.m. we will gather at the Clarence Darrow Bridge in Jackson Park for the traditional flower tossing and brief speeches when the Darrow Commemorative Committee honors Darrow’s words and spirit on the anniversary of his death.

Then, at 6 pm join us on Loyola University Chicago’s Water Tower Campus, at a symposium exploring the 125th anniversary of Darrow’s representation of union organizers in the Woodworkers’ Conspiracy case, the labor movement then, and the movement today. Actor Sheri Flanders will read excerpts from Darrow’s closing argument. Speakers will include Professor Juan Perea of Loyola Law School and Robert Reiter, president of the Chicago Federation of Labor.

The evening event is co-sponsored by the Darrow Commemorative Committee, and the Curt and Linda Rodin Center for Social Justice and the Civitas ChildLaw Center at Loyola University Chicago School of Law. Light refreshments will be served; registration is appreciated. Please RSVP here.

Both events are organized by the Clarence Darrow Commemorative Committee, whose mission is to honor and remember the life, work, values, and the philosophy of the famed Chicago lawyer Clarence Darrow (1857-1938), Particular emphasis is placed upon Darrow’s devotion to the American ideal of the universal application of the rule of law for the protection of all persons and causes, no matter how unpopular.

For many decades the Committee has gathered a group on the anniversary of Darrow’s death to summon his spirit by throwing flowers into the water at the bridge in his beloved Jackson Park, where he once, as a bet, said his spirit would return if it turned out that communication was possible from the afterwold. To ensure that his spirit does, in fact, return, the Committee then organizes a Symposium to discuss a topic that would have been dear to Darrow’s passions.

Further detail about our events

Flower tossing and remarks are at 10 a.m. on Monday, March 13 just EAST of hte Clarence darrow Bridge in Jackson Park (the bridge is under construction). The Darrow Bridge is behind the Museum of Science and Industry: Driving south on Lake Shore Drive, pass the light at 57th Drive and turn right at the next light (Science Drive). You will come almost immediately to Columbia Drive. If you turn left and follow Columbia Drive there is parking near the bridge. This event is free and no RSVP is needed. Flowers are provided for participation in the tossing ceremony.

The evening Symposium, Monday, March 13th, 6 – 7 pm (doors open at 5:30) is at Loyola University Chicago Quinlan School of Business, 16 E. Pearson St., Room 1001. This event is free but please RSVP here.


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