Craig Simpson interview, 2021-11-13
Scope and Contents
D.C. Oral History Collaborative (DCOHC) is a citywide initiative to train community members in oral history skills, fund new and ongoing oral history projects, connect volunteers with oral history projects, and publicize existing oral history collections. DCOHC is a project of DC Public Library, HumanitiesDC, and the Historical Society of Washington, D.C. This collection contains oral history interviews, transcripts, and indexes produced by DCOHC grantees.
- Creation: 2021-11-13
Language of Materials
Biographical / Historical
Craig Simpson was born in Glenmont, Maryland. His family moved to White Oak, Maryland when he was 10 years old. He graduated from Springbrook High School in 1969. He started his activism in high school, at which time he attended Anti-Vietnam War rallies and supported a teachers strike. Craig attended University of Maryland and left during his junior year to peruse full time employment. He joined Metrobus in 1974, soon after he joined, he participated in his first wildcat strike. For the decades that followed Craig remained active in the union, organizing.
From the Collection: 855 Gigabytes
Please note this interview was recorded over a telephone call. Craig Simpson reflects on his life as a labor organizer, with special attention to the 1978 Metro Strike and the nearly three decades working with the labor movement as an employee of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA). Craig remembers the events between 1974 and 1978 that led to the 1978 Metro wildcat strike in precise detail. While the previous generation of bus drivers was entirely white men, the generation that led the strike was majority Black and included an increasing number of women. Craig speaks about how different generations of drivers came together for the strike. He also talks about his own early political development. While in high school he participated in demonstrations against the war in Vietnam and was active in support of a teachers strike. After working at WMATA, Craig worked for a number of labor unions and progressive organizations. Today he continues support labor struggles in various ways.
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