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CoffeeTree Books hosts book signing with John Hennen

MOREHEAD, KY — CoffeeTree Books is pleased to welcome MSU Professor Emeritus John Hennen for an informal discussion and signing of his recently released book, A Union for Appalachian Healthcare Workers: The Radical Roots and Hard Fights of Local 1199.

The union of hospital workers usually referred to as the 1199 sits at the intersection of three of the most important topics in U.S. history: organized labor, health care, and civil rights. John Hennen’s book explores the union’s history in Appalachia, a region that is generally associated with extractive industries but has seen health care grow as a share of the overall economy.

 With a multiracial, largely female, and notably militant membership, 1199 was at labor’s vanguard in the 1970s, and Hennen traces its efforts in hospitals, nursing homes, and health-care centers in West Virginia, eastern Kentucky, and Appalachian Ohio. He places these stories of mainly low-wage women workers within the framework of shake-ups in the late industrial and early postindustrial United States, relying in part on the words of Local 1199 workers and organizers themselves. Both a sophisticated account of an overlooked aspect of Appalachia’s labor history and a key piece of context for Americans’ current concern with the status of “essential workers,” Hennen’s book is a timely contribution to the fields of history and Appalachian studies and to the study of social movements.

The event is from 4:30-5:30 p.m. on Oct. 7 at the stage at CoffeeTree Books. The event is free and open to the public. All are welcome. 

For more information, please call 606-784-8364 or email susan@coffeetreebooks.com.

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