Jim Larkin is a renowned trade unionist who hails from Liverpool England and was born on January 21, 1876. Jim parents were of Irish origin and lived in the slums of Liverpool.
Life in the slum was not all rosy, and as a result, Jim was forced to juggle between school and work so as to supplement the family’s income. Jim attended school during the morning hours and work during the afternoon’s something that was very common among the slums dwellers at that time.
Larkin would later find himself working as a foreman at the Liverpool docks, and that is where his passion for advocating for the rights of workers grew. Larkin in 1983 became a member of the Independent Labor Party.
Workers strike at the Liverpool docks did cost Larkin his job as he was among those in the forefront in fighting for better working conditions. Larkin active participation in the strike earned him a place at the National Union Dock Laborers NUDL where he served as the Union organizer.
Larkin in 1907 was transferred to the Union to go and represent workers in Dublin in 1907. It is in Dublin that Larkin Founded Irish Transport and General Workers Union (ITGWU) whose main objectives was to bring together all the Irish industrial workers living in Dublin under one union that will advance their grievances.
ITGWU became the first modern Irish labor organization to be established in Dublin. Before ITGWU was formed the Irish workers in Dublin were members of British based unions.
Larkin would later establish another union known as the Irish Labor Party. The party was in the forefront in organizing major strikes in Dublin including the 1913 successful Lockout strike that attracted more than 100,000 workers and nearly lasted for about eight months.
Larkin in 1903 married Elizabeth Brown with whom they had four sons. Larkin died on January 30, 1974.