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October 5, “Bloody Friday”

Mass picket lines were set up at Warner Brothers Studios.  Variety described the scene:

“Strikers and studio police lined up for battle before sunup Friday morning and the skirmishing began when non-strikers reported for work at six o’clock and tried to pass the picket line.  Strikers deployed from their barricades, halted the non-strikers and rolled three automobiles on their sides. By noon reinforcements arrived for both sides.  Squads of police arrived from Glendale and Los Angeles to aid the Burbank cops, while the strikers increased to about 1,000, led by Herb Sorrell. When more non-strikers attempted to crash the gate, there was a general melee in which various implements of war were used, including tear gas bombs, fire hoses, knuckles, clubs, brickbats, and beer bottles. After two hours of strife, 300 police and deputy sheriffs dispersed the pickets and counted 40 casualties, non serious.”

The pickets returned to the battlefields the next day, armed with an injunction from a Superior Court judge that barred the police from interfering with the strike.  Warner Brothers got its own injunction limiting the number of pickets to no more than three at a gate.

The following week, the violence again broke out at Warner’s. This time everyone came armed with some sort of weapon. Thirty-nine people were injured.

Many Warner’s workers who managed to get through the picket lines stayed inside the studio that night. Others were brought in during the middle of the night. The violence continued throughout the week, although not so brutally as in the first days.