International Working Men’s Association

The Minute Book of the General Council
October 1867

Council Meeting
October 1

The Minutes are in Eccarius’s hand on pp. 112-13 of the Minute Book.

Citizen Jung in the chair.

The Minutes of the previous meeting were read and confirmed.

The General Secretary [Eccarius] read a letter from Birmingham, the writer of which asked for the addresses of the Continental secretaries for the Rev. Neil to transmit peace addresses.

The Council took no action upon the matter.

A letter was read from the tailors of Cologne asking for the Rules of the English Tailors’ Association and little advice for the guidance of a tailors’ congress to be held on the 14th of October at Leipzig to establish an amalgamation.[215]

The Secretary was instructed to answer officially.

The Secretary reported that Mr. Potter had sent a bill charging 2d. a copy for 100 Bee-Hives.

Citizen Fox volunteered to try and get the charge reduced to trade price.

Citizen Fox reported that Mr. Miall was in possession of the letter from the Liverpool cigar-makers containing a post-office order, but would only give it up to some authorised officer.

Citizen Eccarius was ordered to go and get it.

Citizens Maurice and Eccarius nominated Mr. Newberry to become a member of the Council.

Citizen Fox announced that the question of the affiliation of the boot-closers had been postponed for a fuller meeting.

Citizen Fox asked leave to postpone the consideration of Citizen Eccarius’s correspondence in the Times.

Citizen Marx preferred postponing his question respecting Citizen Fox’s letter to Ph. Becker.[216]

Resolved that the Bee-Hives, containing the annual report and balance-sheet[217] to [be] sent to the metropolitan societies, be directed and brought to the next meeting.

Upon the proposition of Citizen Fox, seconded by Citizen Lessner, it was unanimously resolved to give credentials to Citizen Hinton of America.

Citizen Fox gave. notice that on an early day he would call attention to the relations of the Bee-Hive towards the Council.

On account of Citizen Shaw’s absence the motion standing in his name was adjourned.

Members present: Eccarius, Fox, Hales, Jun., Lafargue, Lessner, Marx, Zabicki.

Chairman [Unsigned]
J. George Eccarius, Secretary

Council Meeting
October 8

[The Minutes are in Eccarius’s hand on pp. 113-15 of the Minute Book]

Citizen Shaw in the chair.

The Minutes of the last meeting were read and confirmed.

The General Secretary [Eccarius] reported that the Secretary of the Birmingham Trades Council had applied for the Rules of the Association. He had sent some copies of the Address and Provisional Rules.[218]

Mr. Hillam of Lynn had applied for nine cards and Rules for the 9s. 9d. sent the other day. He sent the names of nine men belonging to various trades as candidates to become members. The affiliation of the Trades branch was not yet decided upon.

Mr. Arthur Miall would only give up the letter on condition that the Secretary signed a paper to make himself responsible for the 3 10s. owing for rent and gas, which condition the Secretary did not comply with.

Citizen Shaw undertook to try and get the letter.


Citizen Isard sent a letter from New York stating that he had many influential men but none were serious about the International except Mr. Jessup. Writing letters to the others was labour in vain. He had been present at a States’ delegate meeting of the National Labour Union where he and Citizen Drury, another member of the French branch, had been well received. Both had. spoken and laid the annexed propositions upon the table. He asked for credentials both for himself and Citizen Drury.[219]

Upon the proposition [of] Citizen Fox, seconded by Citizen Dupont, it was agreed to send him credentials, annul and Congress reports.

Citizen Lafargue read a Spanish letter from a Spaniard who had read something about the Congress of Lausanne. The writer was very enthusiastic for the working classes. In Madrid he had effected an alliance between the students and the working men. He had travelled over all Europe and was conscious that much was to be done in Spain but the country was too much agitated at present. There was good material in Catalonia, Aragon, and Castile. He would persevere and encounter a martyr’s fate if need be.

Citizen Fox announced that he had received the American papers but had not read them yet. The Work[ing]man’s Advocate of Chicago contained a full report.

Citizen Marx announced that a member of the Association, Citizen Liebknecht, had been returned to the North German Parliament by the working men of Saxony.[220] He was the only member that had dared to attack Bismarck’s war policy, for which he had been invited by the Arbeiter-Bildungs-Verein — a Schulze-Delitzsch society — to receive the acknowledgements of the working men for his services. [Cit. Fox then brought on his charge against Cit. Eccarius on account of his report of the Lausanne Congress in the Times]

Citizen Fox introduced the motion of which he had given notice at [the] last meeting condemning the reports sent by Citizen Eccarius from Lausanne to the Times, and supported it in a speech of considerable length; Citizen Carter supported and stated that he considered it the duty of any Council member who had a stigma cast upon him to resign. He then announced his resignation as Italian Secretary and member of the Council and left the room.

Citizen Shaw also concurred in Fox’s view and thought [the reports ought to have] it wrong that reports had been sent to the Times. [instead of sending them]

Citizens Marx, Jung, Lafargue, and Zabicki opposed it.

Citizen Hales moved a more general resolution which Fox preferred to his own, to which Citizen Marx moved the order of the day as an amendment, which was carried against two.[221]

The Council then adjourned.

Members present: Buckley, Carter, Eccarius, Fox, Hales, Jung, Lafargue, Lessner, Marx, Maurice, Shaw, Stepney, Zabicki.


Council Meeting
October 22

[The Minutes are in Eccarius’s hand on pp. 115-16 of the Minute Book]

Citizen Jung in the chair.

The Minutes of the last meeting were read and confirmed.

The Secretary [Eccarius] announced that the Cheltenham cordwainers had sent 2s. 6d. towards the Congress fund.

Citizen Shaw read a letter from Miall demanding money before Wednesday to stop prosecution. The letter containing the post-office order from the Liverpool cigar-makers had been cut open and pasted together again by Mr. Miall.

It was agreed to pay Mr. Miall 10s. and the Secretary was instructed to answer his letter which contained insinuations against the members of the Council.

Citizen Jung read a letter from Lausanne asking for a loan to liquidate some debts incurred by the section as a co-operative association.[222]

Citizen Jung was instructed to answer the letter and to state that the Council [was] unable to render any assistance.

Citizen Marx read some extracts from the stenographic reports of the North German Parliament. Mr. Liebknecht, a member of the Association, had delivered a speech in favour of the abolition of standing armies and the introduction of popular armaments, and subjecting Bismarck’s conduct in the Luxemburg affair to a severe criticism.[223]

It was then agreed that the Secretary should summon all the members of the Council appointed by the Lausanne Congress.

The issuing of the plenary powers of delegation demanded by Citizens Isard and Drury in the United States was postponed.

It was agreed that in future no extra charge should be made for cards of membership.

The resolution requiring the delegates of affiliated societies to take out cards of membership was rescinded.[224]

It was unanimously agreed that the money voted to Citizen Maurice for the use of his room be paid as soon as. possible.

The meeting adjourned at half past ten.

Members present: Buckley, Eccarius, Hales, Jung, Lessner, Marx, Maurice, Shaw, Stepney, Zabicki.


October 29

[No heading. The Minutes are in Eccarius’s hand on pp. 116-17 of the Minute Book]

Citizen Shaw was unanimously elected to the chair.

The Minutes of the previous meeting were read and confirmed.

The Secretary [Eccarius] reported that having no addresses of the members of the Council he had written to five only. Citizen Howell had answered and promised that he would put in [an] appearance at the next meeting.

He read a letter from Mr. Miall containing an apology for his insinuations in the last [one], and a statement that [he] should consider himself entitled to open the letters of the Council though it was unlawful.

Citizen Jung read letters from Digne (Basses-Alpes) and Bonneville, the writers of which asked [for the] Rules as they intended to establish branches of the Association.

It was proposed by Citizen Lessner, and Seconded by Citizen Hales, and unanimously carried that Citizen Jung write to Lausanne to inquire about the Minutes of the late Congress.

The Secretary was instructed to ascertain the price of printing 1,000 copies of the Rules of the Association.

Mr. Bradnick was unanimously accepted as delegate from the Elastic Web-Weavers’ Association.

Mr. Weston, through the medium of Mr. Hales, apologised for his absence and promised to come in future.

It was proposed that the present secretaries should, including the General Secretary, form the Standing Committee. Carried.

Citizen Fox stated that we required constant information about the labour movement in the United States and [that] the best mode to get it would be to get our correspondents Wholly and Jessup to furnish us with newspapers. Wherever a social movement takes place, Jessup gets papers from all parts of the country. Jessup was a tried man. He doubted that Wholly would turn out to be equally good. If he was and our funds run short we might confine ourselves to one. But at present we ought to enter into arrangements with both. We should have to send papers in return, but what? He thought the weekly Bee-Hive, the fortnightly Cooperator, and the Industrial Partnership Record[225] would answer the purpose. They would amount to 4s. 4d. a month.

Citizen Jung said he was ready to second the proposition but before doing so he wanted to know what use was going to be made of the papers we should receive.

Citizen Fox was willing to have that question settled first.

Citizen Holes spoke in favour of the scheme. He thought it was the business of the Council to get the information to supply it to the Continent.

The Council adjourned at half past ten.

Members present: Buckley, Eccarius, Fox, Hales, Jung, Lessner, Mrs. Law, Marx, Maurice, Shaw, Stepney, Zabicki.