Documents of the First International 1868

To the Members of the International Working Men’s Association[387]

Source: Minutes of the General Council of the First International 1866-1868, 1964;
Adopted by the General Council on January 28, 1868;
First Published: in The Bee-Hive, February 15, Der Vorbote, February and La Voix de l'Avenir, March 22, 1868.

Fellow working men! With the view of eliciting an unmistakable expression of opinion from the great body of the members of the International Working Men’s Association, the last Congress recommended the Council to submit to you the following questions for deliberation, and we solicit your favour to return your conclusions respecting them at the earliest opportunity.

1. The practicability of organising a system of credit and co-operative exchanges-facilitated by the use of paper money-amongst the various associations of working men.

2. What are the effects of the use c:” machinery upon the condition of the labouring poor?

3. The advisability of drawing up a definite programme for the technical, and a comprehensive secular education of the children of the poor.

4. The land, mines, canals, highways, railroads, etc.; ought they to be the property of private individuals and worked for their personal profit, or would it be expedient to convert them into public property and work them for the community at large.

5. The policy of strikes, and the advisability of insisting upon the establishment of the courts of arbitration.

It will depend upon the answers returned to these questions, whether any of them shall form a part of the programme of the next congress to be held at Brussels in the first week of September next.

By order of the General Council of the International Working Men’s Association,

R. Shaw, Chairman
J. George Eccarius, Hon. General Secretary