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Unfriendly Fire by Kevin P. Murphy

Unfriendly Fire

by Kevin P. Murphy

103 pages
Dramatized account of the 1937 Republic Steel Memorial Day Massacre.

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(PDF format)
Category: History
(requires Adobe Reader)
About the Book
Unfriendly Fire is an original play based on the "1937 Memorial Day Massacre" at Republic Steel Company's South Chicago plant.

It was a time of struggle, when a society staggered back from the depths of economic disaster. After eight years of widespread hardship, people in the United States were beginning to see promising light at the end of an arduous tunnel. Workers were returning to work in increasing -- but still too small -- numbers, the banked engines of industry were beginning to steam once more and, for the first time in United States history, there was a President sympathetic to the rights of workers.

After a barren four decades in which union membership had been automatically equated with anarchism and communism by the vast majority of agriculturally-oriented Americans, people were beginning to realize that the wheels of industry were lubricated by the sweat and blood of a miserably maltreated work force.

American workers began joining unions in larger numbers than ever before, in a movement that crested, and broke, on Chicago's southeast side, the cauldron of American steel manufacture.

On May 30, 1937, after two stinging skirmishes earlier in the week, a major encounter took place between the forces of industrial management on one side, and labor on the other. An uneven contest, it ended in death for ten marchers, and injuries -- some severe -- for more than 100 others. The two-act drama, Unfriendly Fire, presents that moment in labor history from the perspective of the front-line participants.


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    A worker in the first space colony goes berserk. Then, the counselor helping that worker becomes an assassin's target, for no apparent reason. And the mystery deepens.
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    Rust Belt town police chief recruits friend at local university to help solve an apparently unrelated series of baffling murders.
  • Out of Order by Kevin P. Murphy
    Assassins pursue a nun and a reporter in desperate chase.


About the Author
Kevin P. Murphy is a freelance writer and videographer living and working in Chicago. With experience in military security and police work, graduate degree in Sociology, and decades of teaching experience, his more than 1500 articles have been published in newspaper, magazine and Internet venues.

His novel, Degrees of Murder (BookLocker) has been awarded 5 stars by reviewers, and his second novel in that series, Out of Order (BookLocker), has received similar positive reviews.

His full-length play, "Something Bright and Alien," was an award winner in the 1998 Ridgewriters (Branch of the California Writers Club) Screenplay competition. It is now also available as an E-book from BookLocker.

Another of his plays, "Unfriendly Fire" (BookLocker) had its premiere at the site of the union hall that emerged from the major labor crisis depicted in that play, with the late Studs Terkel as the host on opening night.

As videographer, he currently has more than 360 community-focused videos posted on his YouTube site, a number that increases regularly, given the vibrance of the Southeast Chicago community in which he lives.



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