Respondent
Richman, Hyman
Interview Date
July 11, 1986
Abstract
Hyman Richman, a teacher and labor mediator, he worked for the department of labor for thirty-three years, was involved in the early labor movement in the state of Pennsylvania and active in the Jewish community in Pittsburgh; birth date, June 25, 1917;
[T1S1] parents' emigration from the Belarus around 1906; some discussion of the 1905 revolution in Russia; his theory about his family name; his siblings; early residence in the Hill District of Pittsburgh; family attitudes; atmosphere in home; recollections of the Irene Kaufmann Settlement; emphasis on education, culture, and history in his family; attending Labor Lyceum, supported by the Workmen's Circle; discussion of his breaking point with religion; importance of Irene Kaufmann Settlement in his youth; his swimming training under Coach Kaufman; swimming competitions and high school swim team; swimming on the University of Pittsburgh team throughout his college career; recollections of the Hill District; description of his father; his life in the Hill District; names of friends; views about teachers during his education; early medical care; his involvement with the A. J. Sunstein Club and Boy Scouts of America; dating in college; employment with the Federal Department of Labor for eighteen months during college;
[T1S2] his graduation in 1939; employment for one year with the Recreational Center of Pittsburgh while doing graduate work; taking civil service tests during the depression; employment with the U.S. Department of Labor in the Wage and Hour Division for thirty-three years; his service in the army; meets his future wife, Vivian, at an army camp in Alabama; their children; their careers and lives; his father's involvement with the labor movement; family relationship with Samuel Gompers, founder of Federation of Labor; enjoyment of his job with the Department of Labor; his assignment to Erie, PA; discussion of his work in the furniture factories in northern Pennsylvania for the Department of Labor; marriage in 1946; return to University of Pittsburgh in 1954; a part-time teacher in the field of labor relations at the University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania State University; retirement in 1974; becomes a labor mediator for the state; early married life in Pittsburgh; birth of first child; comparison of his outlook on life with that of his children; 1964, becomes director of Pittsburgh Office, Department of Labor; his travels to Washington for the job; discussion of raising children; social activities; friendship with Raymond Richman; relationship with K. Leroy Irvis, Speaker of Pennsylvania House; experiences of racial discrimination in restaurants; his attitudes toward the Jewish establishment; involvement with United Jewish Appeal, Jewish Family and Children's Services, and United Mental Health; more discussion of his children, two daughters; his gradual involvement with organized Jewry; becomes chairman, Men's Discussion Group at Rodef Shalom; helps establish a similar group at Beth Shalom; becomes a member of Rodef Shalom in 1985;
[T2S3] mother's background; early Jewish education; discussion of the Workmen's Circle, a Jewish labor union; his involvement with debate teams at the Irene Kaufmann Center and the University of Pittsburgh; some history of early labor movement; his personal experience with the labor movement; descriptions of work conditions for poor immigrant workers;
[T2S4] continuation of discussion of labor movement; obtains his masters degree in 1959, University of Pittsburgh; begins teaching career; returns to discussion of labor movement in Pittsburgh; prominent figures in the labor movement; predictions for future of labor; his work as a labor mediator;
[T3S5] his sister's education; his involvement with settling school strikes; discussion of quality of education; effect of women's movement on labor; a story about pottery workers in Liverpool, OH; day-care and maternity leave; the Landrum-Griffin Bill; stories involving a local shoe store, Emerson Electric Company; an extensive list of his affiliations and past-affiliation with organizations including the American Federation of Government Employees, U.S. Department of Labor, and Americans for Democratic Action; his role in settling boycotts in Pittsburgh; views about Jewish and Black relations;
[T3S6] discussion of labor union leaders, Father Rice in the 1930s, Phillip Murray; leaders in the movement at the time of interview, Dan Mallings, Ben Fischer, Harold Ruttenberg; his accomplishments; fears for the future; how he would like to be remembered; resolving a labor dispute at Heinz plant.
Subjects
Samuel Gompers; Hill District (Pittsburgh, Pa.); Irene Kaufmann Settlement (Pittsburgh, Pa.); Irvis, K. Leroy, 1919-2006; Jews--Pennsylvania--Pittsburgh; Labor movement; Lawyers; Law; Workmen's Circle
Birth Date
1917
City
Pittsburgh, PA
Profession
Labor leader; Labor mediator; Teacher
Work
U. S Department of Labor
Residence
Shadyside
Length (hours)
3
Interviewer1
Coffey, Dr. Charles
Interviewer2
Ripp, Marcia
Indexer
Ripp, Marcia
Collateral Materials
Box 105 FF 18
Identifier
ais196440.364
Rights
All rights reserved. University of Pittsburgh