Our History

The original bug from 1891-1938

To learn more about the history of the IBEW click HERE.

A Brief History of IBEW Local 1439

Chartered on March 16, 1945 – IBEW Local 1439 would first be mentioned in the Electrical Workers journal in the February 1946 edition (page 68) under the “Local Lines,” contribution of IBEW Local 649. A transcription of that entry is below:

LU. NO. 649,
Editor: Regretting the loss of our dear Brother and past press secretary, Brother Matt Watkins, I am taking over that position.
     Since the local union hasn’t had an article in the WORKER on the past June election, I think it appropriate to introduce the new officers: Brothers J. H. Nickell, business manager; Wilbur Plumb, president; Rodah, vice president. The old reliables are F. L. Goodwin, financial secretary; Henry Mallory, treasurer, and Gulis Voss, recording secretary. The executive board Brothers are Pat Doyle, chairman; Richardson and Chick Wertzel, wireman; Brothers Frand Henderson and Christ Nordyke, lineman Brothers Mortindale and Norwell, Shell maintenance; Brother Loyde Greenwalt, Western maintenance.
     The examining board consists of the executive board members and myself.
     Being an employee of the Union Electric Company I can say there has been a job well one in this district by two very faithful Brothers. The entire International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers owes Brothers H. Broach and Frank Jacobs, International representatives, thanks and congratulations for organizing Union Electric Company physical workers 100 per cent in St. Louis, Missouri, which means several hundred new members, and they are ready to negotiate new blanket contracts for B-309, East St. Louis; B-649, Alton, and new Local B-1439, St. Louis, and the Union Electric Power Company.   
      The wireman held a special meeting December 7, 1945. Brother Gail Gibson, of International Office, attended this meeting in the company of Brother Eddie Hook, business manager, Local Union 1145, sign erector, St. Louis, Missouri. Brother Hook is acting as chauffeur for Brother Gibson. I think the cause is still up in Virginia some place. 
     J. H. Nickell, business manager, and Wilbur Plumb, president, have been elected delegates by this local union to attend the next regular convention. Brothers, they are ready. Time and place is what they are waiting on.

C. M. (SHORTY) Lowe, P. S.

Click HERE for the Electrical Worker Feb. 1946 Edition.

However, the first “Local Lines” entry would not appear in The Electrical Worker until the November 1946 edition (page 429):

L. U. NO. 1439,
     Editor: Having been appointed reporter of Local No. 1439 for the JOURNAL just the other evening, I haven’t had time to gather much news for this issue. Brothers Sanders, Fischer and the undersigned had the great privilege of attending, as delegates, the Frisco convention. We wish to express here our thanks to Local No. 6 for their splendid program and hospitality. One incident which still amuses us is the “bawling out” that Brother Fischer received from the traffic cop at one of Frisco’s busy intersections. He was caught disobeying the cop and his 17 traffic lights at that particular corner. 
     We being e new utility local, will present our first contract to the members since being in the IBEW.
     The cooperation between the outside locals and our local is “tops.”
     Now that the shortage of materials is easing, our overhead and underground departments are busy catching up on back work.
You’ll be hearing from Local 1439 of St. Louis, Missouri from now on.

Click HERE for The Electrical Worker Nov. 1946 Edition.