Bay View Rolling Mills Massacre, Bay View, WI, May 1886
The Daily Northwestern (Oshkosh, Wisconsin) 1886 May 4
The Militia Out
Fighting Going on in Milwaukee Today
News from Bay View that the Iron Works are being beneiged and that Fighting has Occurred
-The First Regiment Called Out and Proceeding to The Scene-The Local Militia Stoned by the Mob and Several Injured-One Volley Fired by the soldiers-The Railway Officials Call for Protection-Streets Filled with Excited People-Fears of Great Trouble and Bloodshed To-Night.
Milwaukee, Wis. May 4-A report from Bay View is that a mob has assembled at that place and is about to assault the works. Fighting has occurred. No details have been received. The light horse squadron is now assembling at the armory to proceed to the scene.
Milwaukee, Wis. May 4, 11 a.m.-Reports from the southern limits of the city show that several crowds of idle men, numbering into the hundreds, have assembled at various points. It is believed that rioting will be avoided. Several manufacturing establishments have been visited by the committee of strikers and ordered to close down. A number of the proprietors have complied. Different companies of the Fourth Battalion are now assembled at their various armories, ready to move at a moment's notice. Governor Rusk has also ordered the Governor's Guards, Madison and Watertown Guards to the city and they are now on their way by special train. With these companies added to the local militia force upon the field it is believed the crowds of idle men will think better of their inclination to indulge in riotous proceedings and quiet will soon be restored and preserved.
11:30 A.M.-Reports from Bay View announce the gathering of idle workingmen to the number of seven or eight thousand. Two militia companies have been sent to Bay View by train and the Light House Squadron will depart in a few minutes.
Milwaukee, May 4-Noon-Upon the request of Mayor Wallber the governor has issued an order to the following companies of the First regiment to appear at Milwaukee at the earliest possible moment: Janesville (two), Racine(two), Monroe, Beloit, Delavan, Whitewater, Darlington, Co. "I" of Madison. A message just received by Governor Rusk from Bay view says the strikers are increasing in numbers and have swarmed into the rolling mills. The Koskiusko guards have been ordered out.
Milwaukee, Wis, May 4-Tremendous excitement has existed throughout the city today. As early as nine o'clock word came from Bay View that a mob was attacking the iron works there, that the laborers about the institution had joined the strikers and that an assault was being made on the iron workers, and that the works were threatened with destruction. The company appealed to the governor for aid and the Fourth Battalion consisting of the Sheridan Guards, Kosciusku Guards, South Side Riles,, and Lincoln Guards were summoned and dispatched to the scene as promptly as possible. The mob was found to consist of several thousand infuriated men who defied all powers of the civil authorities and were hooting and yelling at the iron workers within, who were barricaded and prepared to defend themselves with their lives if necessary. The militia on their arrival served to hold the mob in check for a time, but the more bold element in the crowd even defied balls and bayonets, and daring the militia to fire, made a rush towards the works. The militia, upon orders, fired one volley, aiming high, so as not to injure any one, and this had the effect to dampen the ardor of the crowd for some time. In the meantime thousands from all parts of the city hastened to Bay View to join the rioters until the crowd that assembled near the works was swelled to frighten proportions, yelling shouting, jeering and using insulting epithets towards the militia. The riotous spirit seemed to spread so like wild fire throughout the city and also in view of the fact that the St. Paul and other railroad companies had asked for state protection, the governor telegraphed for the companies of the First Regiment, which are now on the way to Milwaukee on special trains. The streets down town are crowded with people discussing the riot and the probabilities of it spreading to other manufacturing institutions and elsewhere in the city. Everybody is excited discussing the situation, and the newspaper offices are besieged for news. The latest news from Bay View is that the mob is hourly becoming more demonstrative and that a collision between the rioters and militia is iminent [sic] and may be expected at any moment. That there will be bloodshed before night is anticipated by everybody. Howling bands of strikers go through the streets with defiant air, which gives anticipation of new outbreaks and still worse troubles tonight. the Light Horse squadron was not sent to Bay View but held under arms at their armory in case of an emergency in the city. Militia from Madison and Janesville are on the way at 50 miles an hour and when they arrive will be sent to Bay View and other companies will be detailed about railroad property or elsewhere where danger may be threatened.
four companies of militia are stationed at Bay View. Upon the appearance of the soldiers they were stoned y the mob and several men were slightly injured. Captain Borchardt of the Kosciusko guards was struck with a brick. He ordered the men to fire one round into the air. The Bay View rolling mills are closed. General manager Miller of St. Paul road asks the Sheriff for protection for the company's freight houses which are threatened.
The Daily Northwestern (Oshkosh, Wisconsin) 1886 May 5
Several Men Killed in Milwaukee
Collison Between the Militia and Rioters in Bay View-five Men Reported Killed and Ten Wounded-Attack on the Allis Works and the Best Brewery-More State Militia Ordered Out.
Milwaukee, Wis., May 5, 10 a.m. News from Bay View is just received to the effect that a collision has occurred between the strikers and militiamen and that five men have been killed and ten seriously wounded No particulars are yet received.