Red Clydeside: A history of the labour movement in Glasgow 1910-1932


Letter from lawyer of Emanuel Shinwell to defence witnesses in the 40 hours strike trial, 31 Jan 1919

image from Red Clydeside collection

Following his arrest, along with Gallacher, Kirkwood and others as one of the leaders of the 40 hours strike, Emanuel Shinwell was charged with incitement to riot. At the High Court in Edinburgh in 1919 both Shinwell and Gallacher were found guilty and sentenced to five months imprisonment.

The letter was written by Shinwell's lawyers to advise those witnesses who were to be called in defence of Shinwell that they should make themselves available to the prosecution lawyers for questioning.

After serving his prison sentence Shinwell concentrated his efforts on forcing political change. As a member of the Independent Labour Party he won the parliamentary seat of Linlithgow in 1922 and served in the first Labour government of 1924.

Source: Glasgow Trades Council Collection, Glasgow City Archives