In 1883, E.W. and O. N. Hutchinson founded the Grand Crossing Tack Company to make carpet tacks. Their small plant was located at 79th and South Chicago Avenue. As the business prospered and expanded they decide to produce their own steel rather than purchase it. They built a mill on the east bank of the Calumet River in 1902. In 1916, Interstate Iron and Steel of East Chicago bought the Grand Crossing Tack Company. In 1930, when Republic Steel was formed, Interstate became part of the merger that formed the new company.
It was the site of a major labor episode, the Memorial Day Massacre that occurred on Memorial Day, 1937 and resulted in the deaths of 10 strikers. On an open stretch of prairie near the Republic Steel
plant that ranks as one of the bloodiest confrontations in American labor history. In 1937 steel union organizers declared war on Little Steel, which included Republic, Bethlehem Steel
, Inland Steel
, and Youngstown sheet and tube. Republic hired off duty Chicago policemen as security for the plant. On the morning of May 30, Republic strikers held a rally in a hall near the plant. Later 300 of them marched toward the main entrance of the mill. As the strikers approached the front gate they were intercepted by a line of police and were greeted by gunshots. Ten of the strikers were killed, shot in the back or side, and many more were injured. 125 men, women, and sustained some sort of injury. The dead were all participants in or sympathizers with the Little Steel strike, called by the Steel Workers Organizing Committee (SWOC), a group affiliated with the CIO. 35 of the injured were members of the Chicago Police Department, who were acting as plant security for Republic Steel. A plaque at the foot of a flagpole in a parking lot of a nearby union hall lists the names of the victims of this incident.
In 1984, Republic Steel was merged with J & L Steel to form LTV Steel, a subsidiary of the LTV Corporation
Sinking Fund Debenture Bond, issued in the 1970’sPrinter: Security-Columbian Bank Note Company Dimensions:
8” (h) x 12” (w) State: IL-Illinois Subject Matter: Metals and Related
| Steel Companies Vignette Topic(s): Male Subject
| Industrial Scene Condition:
Vertical fold lines, punch hole cancels in the signature areas and body, and some toning and edge faults from age.