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Mother Jones monument in Illinois to be restored

Published on NewsOK Modified: June 18, 2014 at 1:20 pm •  Published: June 18, 2014

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Union workers are chipping in to give a makeover to a monument for firebrand labor activist Mother Jones.

The effort comes more than 80 years s after their predecessors and school kids scrimped pennies during the Great Depression to build the towering structure at her Illinois gravesite.

Local politicians joined labor leaders Tuesday in a union-owned Mount Olive cemetery northeast of St. Louis to announce that a drive led by the AFL-CIO. Donors from more than 100 different union groups come from 17 states.

Dedicated six years after her death at the age of 100, the 80-ton Minnesota granite obelisk honors the woman who was born Mary Harris Jones. The white-haired, 5-foot-tall former seamstress was in the thick of some of the nation's most venomous labor disputes.