Labor Sayings and Quotes

Below you will find our collection of inspirational, wise, and humorous old labor quotes, labor sayings, and labor proverbs, collected over the years from a variety of sources.

All wealth is the product of labor.     

John Locke

There is no real wealth but the labor of man.     

Percy Bysshe Shelley

Labor is man's greatest function. He is nothing, he can do nothing, he can achieve nothing, he can fulfill nothing, without working.     

Orville Dewey

Labor is still, and ever will be, the inevitable price set upon everything which is valuable.     

Samuel Smiles

For as labor cannot produce without the use of land, the denial of the equal right to the use of land is necessarily the denial of the labor to its own produce.     

Henry George

Labor can not stand still. It must not retreat. It must go on, or go under.     

Harry Bridges

It is labor alone that is productive: it creates wealth and therewith lays the outward foundations for the inward flowering of man.     

Ludwig Von Mises

Labor rids us of three great evils poverty, vice, and boredom.     


Labor wants pride and joy in doing good work, a sense of making or doing something beautiful or useful to be treated with dignity and respect as brother and sister.     

Thorstein Veblen

A man is not idle because he is absorbed in thought. There is a visible labor and there is an invisible labor.     

Victor Hugo

He who labors diligently need never despair; for all things are accomplished by diligence and labor.     


Labor is the source of all wealth and all culture.     

Ferdinand Lassalle

It is only through labor and painful effort, by grim energy and resolute courage, that we move on to better things.     

Theodore Roosevelt

All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.     

Martin Luther King, Jr.

Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration.     

Abraham Lincoln

People might not get all that they work for in this world, but they must certainly work for all that they get.     

Frederick Douglass

Not all the labor of the earth Is done by hardened hands.     

Will Carleton

Labor can and will become its own employer through co-operative association.     

Leland Stanford

Labor is the only prayer that nature answers.     

Robert Green Ingersoll

Labor disgraces no man; unfortunately, you occasionally find men who disgrace labor.     

Ulysses S. Grant

Labor is the instituted means for the methodical development of all our powers under the direction and control of the will     

Josiah Gilbert Holland

Labor never quits. We never give up the fight no matter how tough the odds, no matter how long it takes.     

George Meany

Before the reward there must be labor. You plant before you harvest. You sow in tears before you reap joy.     

Ralph Ransom

As labor creates the wealth of the country, we demand the passage of such laws as may be necessary to protect it in all its rights.     

John Peter Altgeld

Labor is the fruit of civilization, not the basis of it.     

Alexander Crummell

Labor is the curse of the world, and nobody can meddle with it without becoming proportionately brutalized.     

Nathaniel Hawthorne

It is only by labor that thought can be made healthy, and only by thought that labor can be happy; and the two cannot be separated with impunity.     

John Ruskin

Labor is today the most vital and potential power this planet has ever known, and its historic mission is as certain of ultimate realization as is the setting of the sun.     

Eugene V. Debs

Labor gives birth to ideas.     

Jim Rohn

Labor is the fabled magician's wand, the philosophers stone, and the cap of good fortune.     

James Weldon Johnson