The Arbejderbevgelsens Bibliotek og Arkiv

Nørrebrogade 66 D
DK-2200 København N
Tel. 45 35361522
Fax 45 35363222

The Labour Movement Library and Archive (ABA) was founded in 1909 to collect material concerning the Danish and the international labour movement in all their aspects and for all political and trade union orientations. The institution is an independent, nonprofit organisation, supported by the Federation of Danish Trade Unions (LO) and receives a grant from the Government.

The Library

The collection of the library consists of 80 000 books; 6000 different periodicals, out of which 700 are still being published; 1350 trade union bulletins, out of which 400 are currently published; the Danish workers' press, in original and on microfilm. The library has a wide selection of material in languages other than Danish, particularly a large number of labour movement publications in English and German from many countries are available, German being most important during the period before 1945, since then English has become more predominant. There are also protocols, analyses, and expositions of central importance in Norwegian, Swedish, Finnish, and French. Periodicals supplement the collections. The circulars and periodicals issued by the political and trade union Internationals are virtually all available from the time just after the turn of the century until today, as are many of those issued by the International Trades Secretariats.

Archives Collection

The Archive contains 1500 organisational archives, i.a. the Confederation of Danish Trade Unions (LO), the Social Democratic Party (Socialdemokratiet), the Socialist People's Party (SF), the Left-Wing Socialist Party (VS), the Communist Party (DKP), the National Union of Metal Workers, the General Workers' Union (SiD), the Women Workers' Union (KAD). As these organisations have always had close international relations, their archives include correspondence with parties and unions abroad, circulars and protocols from international congresses and meetings, and material originating in the Secretariat of the International in Brussels during the years from 1900 to 1914. This is also true for material from the Socialist Youth International of the interwar years, and of the Women's International, and the Trade Union International. Important material concerning the "Kommunistische Partei Deutschlands Opposition" from 1934 to 1938 is to be found here, and is supplemented by several personal files. The Archive contains 220 personal files, some of which are important for the study of the international labour movement.

The picture and poster collection contains about 150,000 photos, 5,000 Danish and 2,000 foreign posters and 650 banners from political and trade union organisations. In addition, a collection of about 2,000 films, videos, tapes and grammophone records is available.


A card index of the ABA collections up to and including 1989 is available. Subsequent acquisitions are registered online in the computer data base DANBIB. Computer registration of the older collections is under way. A register for most of the individual archives has been prepared. From 1995 existing registers will be computerized, but a printed version will continue to be produced.

ABA has published several monographies and bibliographies and participates in the editorial work of the quarterly Arbejderhistorie as well as other research work on labour history. A list of publications can be ordered.

Days and hours of service
Mon-Fri: 12 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Wed: 12 a.m. to 6 p.m.
15 June-15 Aug: 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.


Back to Research Page Index  |  Back to Trotsky Encyclopedia Home Page

Last updated 3 June 1998