Oral History Videos
So much of history, particularly the history of Local 302, is not written down and is probably lost forever.
We’re putting an end to this. From now on, we’re going to record the oral history of Local 302 members, retirees and yes, even some of our contractors, so we can preserve our history. By keeping track of our history, we can learn from it and hopefully not make the same mistakes again.
These oral history videos are available through a YouTube channel. Just follow the instructions below. These YouTube videos are unlisted which means it is extremely unlikely that anybody except a Local 302 member can see them.
These are real live Local 302 members. They aren’t professional actors, they didn’t have a script; they were recorded in living rooms and around kitchen tables over coffee and photo albums. They’re telling you their own stories in their own words.
Some joined Local 302 because they followed their father’s or uncle’s footsteps. Others had to wait patiently. Some came in as permit hands; others as oilers and still others as apprentices. Regardless, once they became Local 302 members, they were part of its proud history and tradition, learning the skills and lessons from experienced journeyman and passing them on to young apprentices.
All of them recognize the important difference Local 302 has made to them and their families: a safe and stable retirement with an adequate income and excellent health care, an excellent standard of living and a lifetime of memories and pride in a job well-done every time they drive on a highway they graded, a boat channel they dredged or a building they erected.
And while Local 302 made a difference in their lives, they have individually and collectively made Local 302 what it is today: one of the oldest and most-respected labor unions in the Pacific Northwest with outstanding benefit and training programs and highly-skilled and hard-working construction hands. If you yourself or another Local 302 retiree would like to be videotaped, please contact Daren Konopaski to arrange an interview.
Here are some of the individual stories captured in short videos which you can stream from this website.
Clyde Wilson: Son of Local 302 business manager Jack Wilson, Clyde began his Local 302 career oiling for several veteran crane hands, going into marine construction. In 1995, Clyde was elected business manager and retired in 2001.
Al Crosswhite: A seventy-year member of the Operating Engineers, Al began his career at Hanford and then moved onto dam construction, then moved west and into dirt work. Eventually, he moved to Alaska where he and his wife Karen founded KC Construction, a Local 302 contractor.
Charlie Barton: Even though his father was an Operator, Charlie had to work at Boeing until he got his first dispatch. Charlie worked as a mechanic in Alaska and Washington.
Dale Reid: Born and raised in Petersburg, Alaska, Dale worked for A.C. Green throughout Alaska, and served as district rep in Juneau for nine years then retired briefly but came out of retirement to serve as Labor Commissioner Click Bishop’s chief of staff.
Doug Frizzell: Doug recalls that it took three operators to sign off on you in order to become a full-fledged 302 member: “they were putting their reputation on the line for you and it really meant something when they did”. Doug shares some great stories about organizing and serving as a salt.
Page Last Updated: Feb 14, 2018 (12:11:56)