Key events in the Boeing Co.’s union history

1935: Thirty-five Boeing production workers form the local Machinists union.

1936: Boeing signs its first labor contract with the Machinists.

1943: In Seattle, 20,000 Machinists protest a wage freeze enacted by the War Labor Board.

1945: Boeing lays off as many as 70,000 workers as the war ends.

1946: SPEEA organizes at Boeing.

1948: The Machinists union stages its first strike over issues of seniority and organizing. The 140-day strike remains the longest in Machinists’ history.

1949: The Machinists union wins the right to represent Boeing workers over the Teamsters union.

1955: Boeing agrees to a pension plan for IAM.

1965: Machinists strike for 19 days over seniority issues and medical coverage.

1967: The Machinists union finances a public-housing project in Kent.

1968: The first 747-100 rolls out of the Everett factory.

1977: Machinists stage a 44-day work stoppage over pension and benefits for retired members.

1978: Boeing begins work on both the 757 and 767 in Washington state.

1989: Concerned about overtime issues, Machinists strike for 48 days.

1993: SPEEA members go on strike for one day.

1994: The first 777 rolls out of the Everett factory.

1995: Machinists strike for 69 days over pension and job security.

1997: The Boeing Co. merges with McDonnell Douglas.

2000: SPEEA’s engineers and technical workers go on strike for 40 days.

2001: Boeing moves its corporate headquarters from Seattle to Chicago. The aviation industry suffers a dramatic downturn, following the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11.

2003: Boeing announces its new 787 Dreamliner jet will be assembled in Everett.

2004: The Machinists union begins to organize Boeing subcontractors in Washington.

2005: Machinists go on strike for 28 days.

2007: Boeing breaks a record with 1,413 commercial jet orders for the year. The first major 787 delay is announced.

2008: Machinists strike for 57 days over job security, health care and retired member benefits.

2009: Boeing selects South Carolina as the site of its second 787 assembly line and flies the Dreamliner for the first time on Dec. 15.

2010: Boeing delays first delivery of its 787 to early 2011 and announces a plan to add jobs in its composites fabrication and assembly facility in south Seattle.

Sources: International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers; Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace, the Boeing Co.; Herald archives

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