Skip to main content

National Trades' Union


NATIONAL TRADES' UNION. In the mid-1830s, hard times and frustration with the inutility of their expanded voting rights drove tens of thousands of urban wage earners toward unionism. By 1836 as many as fifty local unions had formed in Philadelphia and New York, with more in Baltimore; Boston; Albany, Schenectady, and Troy, New York; Washington, D.C.; Newark and New Brunswick, New Jersey; Cincinnati, Ohio; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Louisville, Kentucky; and elsewhere. While some organized national unions within their crafts, most participated in citywide "trades' unions," which established the short-lived National Trades' Union in 1834 under the presidencies of first Ely Moore then John Commerford. The NTU collapsed with most of its constituent bodies during the panic of 1837.


Pessen, Edward. Most Uncommon Jacksonians: The Radical Leaders of the Early Labor Movement. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1967.

Mark A.Lause

See alsoTrade Unions .

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"National Trades' Union." Dictionary of American History. . 18 Aug. 2018 <>.

"National Trades' Union." Dictionary of American History. . (August 18, 2018).

"National Trades' Union." Dictionary of American History. . Retrieved August 18, 2018 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.