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Last updated:19 November 2018


Labour movement - contemporary

Trade union resources 
Co-operative movement 
Political organisations/campaign groups

Labour movement - history

Libraries, archives and museums 
History societies 
Miscellaneous websites
Collections of online texts 
Newspaper and magazine web sites

Labour Movement - Contemporary

Trade Union resources

These following three sites provide an excellent guide to TU activity the world over and links to a vast range of resources




Co-operative Movement

International Co-operative Alliance
The International Co-operative Alliance is a non-profit international association established in 1895 to advance the co-operative social enterprise model.

The U.K. Co-operative Group
Formerly Co-operative Wholesale Society and Co-operative Retail Services.

Co-operative College
An educational establishment proviing learning and research to support the development of the co-operative movement

Co-operative Party
Formed in 1917 to create a level playing field for co-operatives and to promote the wider principles of co-operation.

Woodcraft Folk
The Co-operative Movement's alternative to the Scouts


Other sites of co-operative interest

University of Wisconsin Center for Cooperatives
Links to a wide range of co-operatives in the U.S.A.


Political organisations/campaign groups

Women Working Worldwide
Works with international partner organisations to empower women workers to fight to claim their rights as workers

Socialist International
The worldwide organisation of social democratic, socialist and labour parties.

Communist and workers' parties
The links page of Solidnet which providesnews, documents and calls for action from communist and workers’ parties


Labour Movement History

Libraries, Archives and Museums

Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Resource Centre
An open access library in Manchester specialising in the study of race, ethnicity and migration. Collections include extensive secondary resources and unique primary resources that tell the story of race relations in Manchester, the UK and wider.

Archives Hub
A national gateway to descriptions of archives in UK universities and colleges

Bishopsgate Library
The Library offers free public access to its collections which cover a variety of subject areas, including the social and topographical history of London, particularly the East End; the early labour movement;  humanism, freethought and secularism; and  co-operation. The site includes an online catalogue of holdings.

George Meany Memorial Archives
Archives of the American Federation of Labor-Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO)

Glasgow Women's Library
A key source of information about women in Scotland

International Association of Labour History Institutions
Umbrella organisation for archives, libraries, document centres, museums and research institutions specialising in the history and theory of the labour movement. Runs Social History Portal, a web site which gives access to more than 900,000 digitised objects (archives, books, brochures, leaflets, photographs, posters, prints, cartoons, sound, films and videos) from a range of specialist archives and libraries in Europe.

International Institute of Social History
Amsterdam. One of the world's largest documentary and research institutions in the field of social history in general and the history of the labour movement in particular. Holds over 4,000 archival collections.

Labor and Working-Class History Association
Promoting a wider understanding of the history of working class people, their communities, and their organizations in the United States.

Marx Memorial Library
Founded in 1933 and housed in an 18th century building once used by the Social Democratic Foundation and by Lenin, the library houses books, pamphlets and periodicals on all aspects of Marxism, the science of Socialism and history of working class movements

Mass Observation Archive
MO was a remarkable project, founded by Charles Madge, Tom Harrisson and Humphrey Jennings in 1937 which aimed to create "the science of ourselves", a documentation of everyday life in Britain carried out through empirical observation, diaries, photographs and much else. The archive is available to researchers.

Modern Records Centre
Based at Warwick University, the Centre aims to collect and make available for research original sources for British social and economic history, especially labour history, industrial relations and industrial politics.

National Co-operative Archive
Contains records of co-op societies and other organisations, personal papers of Robert Owen, George Holyoake and others, and a film archive. Their web site includes an online catalogue.

People's History Museum
The museum is a national centre for the collection, conservation, interpretation and study of material relating to the history of working people in Britain. The archives centre includes extensive archives on the history of the Labour Party and Communist Party of Great Britain.

Reuther Library
Detroit-based home to the collections of numerous unions and labor-related organizations

Robert Owen Museum
Owen was born in Newtown, Powys, Wales in 1771 and is regarded as the founder of the Co-operative Movement. The museum tells Owen's story.

Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC) Archive
The Archive holds all the surviving documentation relating to the STUC and its business from 1897 onwards. Held at Glasgow Caledonian University Library.

South Wales Miners' Library
Established by the University College of Swansea in 1973, to house material of the South Wales Coalfield Collection which tells the history of the South Wales miners through a variety of archives, including trade unions, co-op societies and individual memoirs.

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
At New York University. The Labor Archive holds a research collection documenting the history of organized labor in New York and the workers who built the City.  The Library is the repository for the Archives of Irish America and the Abraham Lincoln Brigade Archives.

Tolpuddle Martyrs Museum
Housed in Tolpuddle itself, the museum commemorates this important episode in British labour history. The web site has many useful resources

TUC Library
The collection, housed at London Metropolitan University, holds the records of the Trades Union Congress, trade union press and labour history journals.

Women's Library
The most extensive collection of women's history in the UK. Based at the London School of Economics.


History Societies

Twentieth Century Communism
A twice-yearly publication concerned with all aspects of current historical research into the life and work of communists and communist parties across the world.

Irish Labour History Society
Aims to preserve the records and reminiscences, written and oral, of the Irish working class and its organisations.

Llafur: the Welsh Peoples' History Society
Promotes and popularises the knowledge and study of all aspects of people’s history in Wales.

London Socialist Historians
Hold regular events and publish a newsletter, which can be downloaded from site. The site also includes a bulletin board.

North East Labour History Society
Founded in 1967 the society is dedicated to the study of working people’s history in the region, particularly during the modern period.

North West Labour History Society
The group was established in the early 1970s to promote greater knowledge of the rich history of radical, industrial, political, social and cultural movements in the North West of England. It holds regular events and publishes an annual journal, which is aimed at the general reader and is the best labour history publication in the country.

Socialist History Society
The Society is the successor to the Communist Party History Group. It holds regular events, meetings and one-off conferences and publishes the Socialist History journal

Society for the Study of Labour History
The Society publishes the journal the Labour History Review, organises regular conferences and actively promotes the preservation of historical resources connected to the labour movement.

Thomas Paine National Historical Association
"America's oldest historical association." It's aim is to educate the world about the life, times, and works of Thomas Paine. Includes online texts of Paine's writings.


Miscellaneous websites

Anarchist Communism in Britain
An article about the history of Anarchist Communism from the late 18th century to the 1970s

Basque Children of '37 Association UK
In 1937, during the Spanish civil war, a group of almost 4,000 children were evacuated from Bilbao. This site aims to remember and preserve the story of these children, the 'niños vascos', in its proper historical context.

British Library: Newspapers Digitisation Project: British Newspapers 1800-1900
1,000,000 pages of content available to the FE and HE community in the United Kingdom. It includes pages from many 19th century periodicals of interest to labour historians.

Chartist Ancestors and Trade Union Ancestors
Genealogy resources, Chartist Ancestors lists many of those who participated in the Chartist cause. Trade Union Ancestors aims to help family historians to identify the correct union, to discover the role their ancestor played in it, and to find out more about trade union history.

Chelmsford and District Trades Council
Exemplary trade union site, which includes history of the Council and a comprehensive list of published trade union histories and trades council histories as well as many other useful links.

Clarion House
Combines information about the history of the Nelson Independent Labour Party with the present uses of the Clarion House.

Communist International (Comintern) Archives Project
A freely accessible index of the archive contents and a subscription service access to images of the documents.

Communist Party of Great Britain online bibliography
Produced by Dave Cope, who states 'I am confident I have unearthed at least 95% of material published nationally by the CPGB, most local material and the vast majority of key books and many of the articles written about the CPGB'.

Community Archives and Heritage Group
A national group which aims to support and promote community archives in the UK and Ireland. The site has links to archives in the United Kingdom and Ireland

Industrial Revolution
Useful set of original sources on the history of the Industrial Revolution - an Internet Modern History Sourcebook.

International Brigade Memorial Trust
Focus for commemorative activity and research concerning the men and women who fought in the International Brigades and in the medical and other support services in the Spanish Civil War.

Labour Heritage
Organisation which promotes the history of the Labour movement, particularly among Labour Party members, Constituency Labour Parties and affiliated organisations.

Malc's Books
Website is dedicated to publishing the literature and celebrating the culture of working  people in general and Lancashire writers in particular. All profits from the sale of paperback books and eBooks on the site are paid directly to the Working Class Movement Library.

Manchester's Radical History
Aims to collect accounts of different strands in Manchester's history.  Particularly concerned with recording the memories of older members of various communities and ensuring that their experiences and knowledge are not lost.

Raymond Williams Society
The Society exists to support and develop intellectual and political projects in areas broadly connected with Williams's work.

Red Clydeside
History of labour politics on Clydeside in Scotland, 1910-1922

Spartacus Educational
An online UK history encyclopedia with many detailed and illustrated entries including such subjects as Chartism, the Peterloo Massacre, child labour and the emancipation of women.

Sylvia Pankhurst Memorial Committee
The Committee is gathering funds to put up a statue to this remarkable political activist



Center for the Study of Political Graphics
The archive contains more than 85,000 protest graphics from the 19th Century to the present, including the largest collection of post-World War II posters in the United States.

George Orwell 1903-1950
Site devoted to this very influential English Socialist. No longer being updated.

The Orwell Society
The society is a means by which anyone can become better acquainted with, and share their appreciation for, the life and work of George Orwell.

Jack London online collection
Hosted by the Jean and Charles Schulz Information Center, Sonoma State University it provides links to Jack London's writings, archive and biographical material and images.

Jim Connell Society
Facebook page of the Jim Connell Society.

Union songs
This site documents union songs and poems.

Peter Watkins's Web site
Maker of The War Game made for and banned by the BBC in the 1960s. Made La Commune (1999) about the Paris Commune.

William Morris Society UK
The Society publishes a Journal, Newsletter and commentaries on all aspects Morris's work and runs a series of talks and visits throughout the year.

William Morris Society US
An affiliate of the UK William Morris Society, the Society publicises the life and work of William Morris and his associates.


Collections of online texts

Marxists' Internet Archive
As well as the usual suspects the MIA contains writings on and by a vast array of other Marxists. A continually developing volunteer project.

Peterloo Witness Project
The project has collected and transcribed virtually all the eye-witness evidence for Peterloo – some 350 accounts in all, together with information about over 1,000 people who were there.  The aim is to make all this material available online in time to support the bicentenary commemorations in 2019.

The Secular Web
A good library containing modern contributions to the atheist/theist debates and a collection of historical texts, including writings of Tom Paine, Mark Twain, Emma Goldman and Charles Darwin.

Fabian Society Online Archive
Browse, read and download Fabian Society tracts, minute books and Young Fabians pamphlets.


Newspaper & Magazine Web sites

Morning Star Online
"The only socialist daily newspaper in the English language worldwide."
Founded on 1 January 1930, it is still the only English language socialist daily newspaper published in the world. In addition to that claim to fame, it is also the only newspaper in Britain owned by its readers. Originally published as The Daily Worker, the paper was launched as the organ of the Communist Party of Great Britain.