May 1st is not just an ordinary day for Chicagoans. On May 4, 1886, several workers rallied after what was known as the Haymarket Riot that took place the day before. The riot was started with a bomb at the McCormick reaper plant after a police officer was hit and killed. Police then began firing at the crowd killing several workers, leaving 60 officers wounded, and at least eight dead.
Now May 1st, also known as May Day, is considered an International Workers Day Celebration to commemorate the Haymarket Massacre. This day marked the day 35,000 workers walked off their jobs to protest for an eight-hour day. The crowds included Chicago unionists, reformers, socialists, anarchists, and ordinary workers combined.
Today, the reason for protesting has come a long way from 8 hour shifts. Instead, the more current issues are immigration and deportation. Workers are demanding that the Obama Administration put a stop to deportation until proper legislation can be passed that will protect their families from being broken. Journalists from the Chicago area head to the historic Haymarket Square to report on the march.
Among the surge of reporters from publications around the city, journalism students from Columbia College Chicago are joining in on coverage of this historic day.
The reporters include: Margaret Mahar, Kamil Szalewicz, Joachim Jocson, Baxter Barrowcliff, Ashley Smith, Ariana Pup, Alexis Thompson and James Sanchez. All of which are currently reporting for their mobile journalism class.