Invitation to the 1919 Boston Police Strike Centennial Commemoration on Saturday, September 7

CLICK HERE to watch the unedited/draft video of the event.


Boston Post article on police strike

“Police vote to strike tonight, walkout at 5:45 p.m. rollcall,” The Boston Post

What: 1919 Boston Police Strike Centennial Commemoration

Where:  UMass Boston campus
University Hall
100 Morrissey Boulevard
Dorchester, MA 02125

When: Saturday, September 7, 2019, 3:00 – 5:00 pm. Join us at 3:00 pm for exhibits and light refreshments. Program begins promptly at 4:00 pm.

RegisterSeating is limited so (free) registration is required.

The 1919 Boston Police Strike Project aims to document and preserve the stories of the more than 1,130 police officers who were involved in this highly influential labor strike, which had lasting effects in the City of Boston and across the United States.  The project is a collaboration between the Boston Police Department Archives, the University of Massachusetts Boston, the Boston City Archives, dedicated volunteer researchers, and family members of men who participated in the strike.  The centennial event on September 7 will commemorate the men who took part in the strike, honor the families who lived with its aftermath, and celebrate the work of the volunteers in researching and compiling biographical profiles for the striking officers for the benefit of researchers, historians, students, family members, and the general public.

Click here to register for this free event.

Project volunteers and family members of strikers: participate in the commemoration by sending us a brief video of your memories and stories about your striker ancestor before July 15, 2019. Click here to learn about how easy it is to create and submit a video.

Directions to UMass Boston.

For disability-related accommodations, including dietary accommodations, please notify UMass Boston at least two weeks prior to the event by visiting the ADA Accomodations webpage. (

This event is made possible through the contributions of time and expertise by the project volunteers and the staff of the Healey Library at UMass Boston, the Boston Police Archives, and the Boston City Archives, as well as the generous financial support of the Zapata-Saavedra Library Fund, the Boston Police Patrolmen’s Association, the Boston Police Relief Organization, the Boston Police Detectives Benevolent Society, the City of Boston Credit Union,  Brenda and Tom O’Brien, Ms. Celeste Finison, Mr. Peter Killelea, Mr. Robert Severy, and Ms. Margaret R. Sullivan. 

Ninety-nine years and counting!

Tim Killelea, a Boston Police striker who became a police officer in Westwood, with his son Roger. (Contributed by Roger’s son, Pete Killelea).

Tim Killelea, a Boston Police Striker who became a police officer in Westwood, with his son Roger, circa 1935. (Contributed by Roger’s son, Pete Killelea.)

As the centennial year of the 1919 Boston Police Strike approaches, we offer our heartfelt thanks to the volunteers near and far who have fueled the project from its earliest days. More than 150 individuals have enrolled in the self-paced online training course, and 28 volunteer researchers (with new recruits weekly) have already contributed more than 4,500 hours of volunteer labor that have resulted in completed first research pass on more than 700 of the 1,142 officers. 

The project is surrounded by excitement and energy from volunteers, descendants of strikers, UMass Boston and Boston Police Department staff, retired police officers, students at UMass Boston and Stonehill College and members of the general public. Interest was stoked by two enthusiastic press pieces that ran in the Boston Globe (Chronicling ‘the most significant event’ in the history of Boston police) and on WGBH’s Curiosity Desk (How A Team Of Citizen Researchers Are Finding New Layers In The Story Of The 1919 Boston Police Strike).  

In the early months of 2019, team members will forge ahead with the biographical and genealogical research, with the goal of completing a biographical sketch of each striking police officer. Later in the spring we will focus on creating an interactive website, open to all, that includes the research data, photographs, maps and a timeline. And on September 7th, 2019 (you’re invited!), we will host a public commemoration of the strike for the centennial anniversary to honor the men and their families whose lives were permanently altered by the 1919 strike along with the project’s friends and volunteers who are working hard to keep the strikers’ stories alive.  

Sincere thanks to you all for the overwhelming support this project has received so far. We look forward to partnering with our many supporters in 2019 to realize our collective dream of commemorating the 1919 strikers and their families.

Warmest holiday wishes to all from
the BPStrike Project Team

Support the next stages of the Boston Police Strike Project!  Click the Give Now button to make a financial contribution to “Friends of Healey Library.” Type your contribution amount into the “Gift Amount” box at the top of the screen, then click the checkbox labeled “Additional Comments/Special Instructions” and type “Boston Police Strike Project.”  You may also designate your donation in memory of or in honor of someone you’d like remembered.  Contributions at any level are very welcome.  So far, all stages of the BPStrike Project have been accomplished through the time and energy of volunteers, with the management and administration of the project provided by the University of Massachusetts Boston and partners in the Boston Police Department Archives.  Now, we need funding to accomplish the next stages of the project involving website design and centennial event expenses.  All contributors – both financial donors and donors of volunteer time and effort – will be recognized at the commemorative event on September 7, 2019 and on the project website.  THANK YOU!