Loyally posed in front of the British flag, the Ōhinemuri Engine Drivers' Union and Firemen's Industrial Union of Workers signals its discontent with the radical, anti-imperialist Federation of Labour. Most of the 1,200 workers at the huge Waihī gold mine were members of the Waihi Workers Union, which was affiliated to the Federation. In 1912 the small group of engine drivers and firemen in this photo broke away and formed their own union, registered under the Industrial Conciliation and Arbitration Act. The Waihi Workers Union went on strike in protest at working with the breakaway union.
Te whakamahi i tēnei tūemi
Archives New Zealand - Te Rua Mahara o te Kāwanatanga
Reference: PC 4, 1912/21
Photograph by John Carless
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