Congresswoman Robin Kelly Supports Legislation to Create a Pullman National Park

CHICAGO—(ENEWSPF)—January 24, 2014. Congresswoman Robin Kelly made the following statement today in support of legislation to create a Pullman National Park:

“This bill is for the Pullman community, where countless residents have worked heroically over decades to preserve and restore this national treasure. And, this bill is for future generations of Americans, who will one day visit Pullman and learn about the vital role it played in our nation’s labor history and civil rights history.

“Pullman has an inspiring story to tell. It’s the story of a great industrialist and hard-working laborers who together built a luxurious product that revolutionized railroad travel and helped to develop a strong working class.         

“If our efforts are successful, future generations will learn that Pullman was the birthplace of our nation’s first black labor union. They’ll learn that in 1894, Pullman became abattleground, where workingmen shed their blood in a violent clash between soldiers and strikers. In fact, as a result of the Pullman strike, both houses of Congress quickly came together in less than one week and unanimously approved legislation that created the world’s first national Labor Day holiday.           

“As I drove in this morning, I saw amazing examples of 19th Century architecture everywhere. The clocktower, the row houses, the Hotel Florence and the Green Stone Church. The architecture alone is an attraction worthy of National Park status.         

“And as I stand here now, I’m reminded of the many community groups who have done an outstanding job of preserving this neighborhood and its story. They deserve a lot of credit for how much they’ve done to protect Pullman—often with little or no resources. I applaud each of them.        

“But now it’s time to turn Pullman over to the entire nation. It belongs to the American people.           

“Creating a Pullman National Park would bring tourism to the Far South Side, along with development, jobs and infinite economic benefits. I predict millions of our citizens will flock to visit Pullman. And they won’t be alone. It will be a destination for people from many countries with noble labor histories. And it will serve as an inspiration for people from nations struggling to build a strong middle class.           

“As I mentioned earlier, more than 100 years ago, Congress voted unanimously to honor our workingmen and women with a national holiday. As we move forward into the Digital Age, it would be fitting for Congress to once again honor the American worker and the Industrial Age by creating a Pullman National Park. Please join us in supporting this legislation.”

Source: robinkelly.house.gov