Concept

William Coaker

Summary
Sir William Ford Coaker KBE (October 19, 1871 – October 26, 1938) was a Newfoundland union leader and politician and founder of the Fisherman's Protective Union, the Fishermen's Union Trading Co., and the town of Port Union. A polarizing figure in Newfoundland politics and society, he was described as "the outstanding social reformer produced by Britain's Oldest Colony" by eventual Premier Joey Smallwood. Coaker is known for criticizing the truck system which dominated the fishery of Newfoundland in the eighteenth and early-nineteenth centuries. Early life Coaker was born in 1871 in St. John's, Newfoundland, and educated at Bishop Feild College. He had political leanings from an early age and spent his school days attending House of Assembly debates. At thirteen he organized a two-day strike against a local merchant firm, winning wage demands for himself and his young coworkers. At fourteen Coaker left school to work for the firm of McDougall and Templeton and two years lat
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