Pullman Porters Rachel Bates BLS 340 Movie Reaction Movie #1 Miles of Smiles, Years of Struggle This movie was about the Pullman Porters, which worked on the trains. In this time of history traveling by trains was very popular for people. The train industry made a large amount of money off of people traveling from city to city town-to-town by trains. This period in history was known as the “age of steam”. Along with people traveling their had to be someone their to take their bags, serve them and assist them in their travel.
These people were known as Pullman Porters. This job was a highly respectable job because it gave that person a certain status within their families, friends and the travelers. Mostly African Americans performed this job. Mrs. Rosina Tucker, the wife of an ex-Pullman Porte, narrated the movie. She discussed the trails, and tribulations that these men had to go through. When working as a Pullman Porter, these men were trusted with the belongings of the travelers. Mostly the travelers were white people who still had the racist mentality but for som reason they figured if these black men were educated enough to be Porters, then they could trust them just a little. These Porters were paid low wages and worked for tips.
During these years blacks had to do a lot of smiling and “Uncle Tomming” to just get appreciated by these white travelers. Not just that but whites had the superiority feeling towards blacks. That was right up their ally to have blacks taking their luggage, shinning their shoes, saying yes sir, yes mam and so on. So after a long time of being mistreated paid poorly and discriminated against blacks were fed up. As Pullman’s they were not in the union nor had any other benefits that whites had.
So as a result the Pullmans organized a brother hood amongst the Pullmans so the train industry. The brotherhoods was dedicated and believed in what they were trying to do. The brotherhood set the foundation for organizing in America. They started to fight against the labor laws in search for equality among the Pullman workers. Through hard work and a long journey of fighting, organizing.