The MALC Affiliate Spotlight is back with a special look at the American Federation of Musicians Local 8, which is celebrating its 125th anniversary this month.
The American Federation of Musicians was granted a charter in October of 1896 by the American Federation of Labor (AFL). This was after a group of delegates representing 3000 musicians from across the country gathered at the Hotel English in Indianapolis. Numbers were chosen for locals and Milwaukee got number 8. However, Local 8 was the first local to receive a charter from the AFM on October 19, 1896 when the initial meeting of the delegates was still going on. Local 8 is the first of seven AFM locals to be chartered in 1896.
Image is AFM Local 8 Sec/Tres, Richard Tremarello, holding the record cards of the Local’s first male and female members. #1 Charles Wagner. #25 Ethel Lowe. All other records were lost in the basement flood.
The Milwaukee Musicians’ Association, Local 8 of the American Federation of Musicians was the first chartered local and that it has been maintained throughout these past 125 years. The Local’s most famous member, Liberace, grew up in West Allis and maintained his Local 8 membership well after his fame and fortune and moving to Las Vegas. He maintained it until his death in 1987. Nearly 50 years of membership.