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Last updated:28 May 2015

First TUC meeting circular, September 1868

This month's object is a circular calling the first Trades Union Congress (T.U.C.) in Manchester, 1868.

first TUC meeting In the 1860s there were calls for an annual national meeting of trade unions, which would be a united voice to defend workers' rights.

There were thousands of union branches across the country covering different trades such as textiles and engineering.

The first Trades Union Congress was assembled by Manchester and Salford Trades Council and held at the Manchester Mechanics' Institute, Princess Street. This is a copy of the circular inviting unions to the Congress.

The TUC holds a congress every year where policies and decisions are made. Each affiliated union sends delegates. This year the TUC Congress is being held in Manchester, 13-16 September.

TUC Pamphlets

We now have details of our collection of Trades Union Congress pamphlets available on our online catalogue - all 27 boxes, or 1048 items, of them.

The collection has items dating from the late 1800s and continuing right up to the present day. It also compliments our collection of TUC congress reports, papers and other items.

Search the Library catalogue

September 2010

Click here for more information about people's working lives and about trade unions


Resources about the Trades Union Congress in the library collection

AE Musson, The congress of 1868: the origins and establishment of the Trades Union Congress (1955) - Shelfmark: AF Trades Union Congress Box 1

S Woods, A brief history or epitome of the Trades Union Congress: from its commencement in 1868 to the Leicester congress, 1903 (ca. 1903) - Shelfmark: AF Trades Union Congress Box 1

WJ Davis, The British Trades Union Congress: history and recollections (1910) - Shelfmark: B31

Trades Union Congress (General Council), The story of the Trades Union Congress (ca. 1924) - Shelfmark: AF Trades Union Congress Box 5

Trades Union Congress, Seventy years of trade unionism, 1868-1938 (1938) - Shelfmark: J26

Robert Taylor, The TUC: from the General Strike to new unionism (2000) - Shelfmark: N22

Trades Union Congress, Working for your future: the TUC 1868-1993 - the first 125 years (1993) - Shelfmark: I51

Co-operative Union, The Trade Union Congress and co-operation (1920) - Shelfmark: J20/2

Vincent Tewson, The story of Congress House (1958) - Shelfmark: AF Trades Union Congress Box 5

Lionel Birch (ed.), The history of the TUC 1868-1968: a pictorial survey of a social revolution (1968) - Shelfmark: R09

John Lovell and BC Roberts, A short history of the T.U.C. (1968) - Shelfmark: B30

Ross M Martin, TUC: the growth of a pressure group, 1868-1976 (1980) - Shelfmark: M33

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