YOUNGDAHL V. RAINFAIR, 355 U. S. 131 (1957)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Youngdahl v. Rainfair, 355 U.S. 131 (1957)

Youngdahl v. Rainfair

No. 11

Argued October 15, 1957

Decided December 9, 1957

355 U.S. 131


Respondent, a manufacturer engaged in interstate commerce and whose employees were entitled to the protection of the National Labor Relations Act, operated a branch plant in an essentially rural community of about 4,000 inhabitants. The plant had about 100 employees, none of whom were members of a labor union but many of whom had signed applications to join a union. Apparently in an effort to compel respondent to recognize the union as the bargaining agent of the employees, some of the employees struck and picketed the plant. The picketing was accompanied by massed name-calling, threats, and other conduct calculated to intimidate the officers, agents and nonstriking employees of the plant. A state court enjoined not only the threatening, intimidating, or coercing of employees of the plant, but also all "picketing or patroling" of the plant premises.


1. The evidence supports the conclusion of the trial court, affirmed by the State Supreme Court, that the conduct and massed name-calling by petitioners were calculated to provoke violence, and were likely to do so unless promptly restrained; and such conduct and abusive language in such circumstances can be enjoined. Pp. 355 U. S. 138-139.

2. However, the trial court unlawfully entered the preempted domain of the National Labor Relations Board insofar as it enjoined peaceful picketing. P. 355 U. S. 139.

3. Insofar as the injunction prohibits petitioners and others cooperating with them from threatening violence, or provoking violence on the part of any of the officers, agents or employees of respondent, and prohibits them from obstructing or attempting to obstruct the free use of the streets adjacent to respondent's place of business, and the free ingress and egress to and from the property, it is affirmed. P. 355 U. S. 139.

4. To the extent that the injunction prohibits all other picketing and patroling of respondent's premises and in particular prohibits peaceful picketing, it is set aside. Pp. 355 U. S. 139-140.

226 Ark. 80, 288 S.W.2d 589, affirmed in part, reversed in part; judgment vacated and cause remanded.

Page 355 U. S. 132

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