During this time Garvey became a master printer. However, after being blacklisted by employers because he had become a leader of a strike in 1907, he took a job in the government printing office. In 1910, he founded a periodical, Garvey's Watchman, which failed. He then formed the National Club, a political group.
Thereafter, in order to support his interest in organizational work, such as leading strikes and organizing black people, he moved to a higher-paying job in Costa Rica as a United Fruit Company banana plantation timekeeper. As a timekeeper, he kept track of the hours worked by company employees, many of them black West Indians like himself. He saw that the workers worked long hours in the swamps, where they battled snakes and other wild animals. They worked for low wages and their money often was often stolen or given to dishonest bankers (Lawler 25).
He soon quit this job over the exploitation of the peasants. After he quit the banana plantation, Garvey worked in other Latin American countries, such as Colombia, Venezuela, and in Central America. In Panama, thousands of blacks were helping to build the nearly completed canal that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers was constructing. Black workers did much of the heavy excavating labor on the 50-mile length of the canal, but compared to their white co-workers, they were poorly paid and lived in separate and les