UE Roots Revealed
In researching the history of UE District One, the UE NEWS managing editor came upon a charter request from UE Local 126 at
National Instrument Laboratories in Washington, D.C. The application was signed by the local president, Abraham Kotelchuck. Any
connection with UE NEWS columnist David Kotelchuck? A query yielded this response from the
health and safety columnist:
"That was my father, who helped organize the local," writes Dave Kotelchuck. "His employers, who were also people who
had been blacklisted from government jobs, were furious that Abe helped organize the local, since they had done him a ‘favor’ by
hiring him. Dad said that if you believed in unions you believed in unions, and that anywhere he worked he was going to try to organize
workers to protect their rights.
"When in government service he was active in the United Office and Public Workers International Union, CIO. He and six other
officers lost their jobs as ‘security risks,’ just one week before the union was to go on strike in 1947 — but the timing,
government officials assured one and all, was just a coincidence.
"You will also be interested to know that Local 126 was the first local that Eddie Bloch helped bring into UE as
international representative for District One, and he always spoke fondly of Abe and the local."