Not beholden to any one political movement, Walter F. Green of Portsmouth, Virginia dedicated his time, resources, and intellect to various organizations after the close of World War I. Moved by the intense political activity in Virginia during the war, Green viewed the state’s political landscape as pregnant with possibilities for revolutionary change. Few developments pleased the labor activist more than black Virginians’ positive response to the formation of the National Brotherhood Workers of America (NBWA). Organized in Washington, DC on March, 21, 1919, the NBWA had launched an aggressive unionization drive in several major cities along the Atlantic Seaboard. Only three months after its formation, the NBWA claimed nearly five thousand members, of which the vast majority resided in Virginia. “Southern Negroes,” Green proudly proclaimed, in the pages of the Negro World, “have begun to see that they can utilize the same methods used by white men for achieving the things they desire.” 1 Terribly frustrated with the American Federation of Labor’s callous disregard for black workers, Green labored diligently to transform the NBWA into a powerful force in working-class politics. Not surprising given the fluidity of race and class politics in black Virginia, the labor activist was also supportive of another organization extremely popular among African American workers in the state: the Universal Negro Improvement Association. Serving as the president of the Portsmouth UNIA in 1920, the labor activist participated in the organization’s historic 1920 convention, organized local meetings, and even sold shares in the Black Star Line. Never compromising his politics, Green strategically used the institutional structures of the UNIA to draw more attention to the position of the black worker in the capitalist economy, the necessity for massive unionization, and the need for blacks to always question the prevailing authorities, powers, and hierarchies of the world. Even though many leftists criticized the Garvey movement for its race first philosophy, Green celebrated the UNIA as an organizational vehicle through which black workers could achieve political power and economic justice.