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Illawarra Unity: Editorial January 2000


This is the first issue of Unity for 2000, although it is the second in seven months, since we produced our special post conference issue (vol. 2, no. 1, 1999) just before Christmas 1999. It includes two important historical documents, a confirmation of the importance of labour history by the pioneering American oral historian and broadcaster, Studs Terkel (reprinted from New Internationalist), and an obituary for George Petersen. In one respect this issue continues the theme of the previous one, in that it includes a piece by Shirley Nixon on the early history of the South Coast Labour Council (SCLC), as it is now called. In fact, this article is the first two chapters of Shirley’s BA Hons. Thesis entitled The Illawarra Trades and Labour Council in Depression, Recovery and War, 1926–45, submitted to the Department of History at the University of Wollongong in 1984. Over the next couple of issues we plan to serialise the remainder of Shirley’s thesis, which is an important historical resource not previously published.