Minutes of the General Council of the First International 1866-1868
1. The leading body of the International Working Men’s Association, elected at the inaugural meeting held at St. Martin’s Hall, London, on September 28, 1864, was originally called the Central Council. When national central committees uniting the International’s sections in each country began to appear, the Central Council in London gradually came to be known as the General Council. This name was fixed in the Rules approved by the Geneva Congress of 1866 .
The announcement about the change of the Council’s name was given in the report of a regular Council meeting published in The Commonwealth No. 188 October 13, 1866. Nevertheless, in the years that followed, in the documents written in English the old name of the Council was used alongside the new one. This is partly to be explained by the Council’s continuing use for some time of the seal and headed note-paper obtained during the first year of the International’s activities.
2. In the summer of 1866, when new railway lines were being laid, large-scale excavations were in progress in the London suburbs. When one of the construction firms, Brothers Waring, tried to replace local labour by Belgians at lower rates, this caused trouble between the English and Belgian excavators. The General Council began to discuss this question for the first time on August 21, 1866 (see The General Council of the First International. 1864-1866. The London Conference, 1865. Minutes, Moscow, p. 226. In the references given below this book is simply referred to as The General Council. 1864-1866). At its meeting on August 28, at which James Lee, the Secretary of the United Excavators’ Society, was present, the General Council adopted the following resolution:
“That in case the Excavators’ Society takes steps to form a branch in the district where the disturbance occurred, that the Central Council send a delegate speaking the Belgian language to accompany the excavators’ delegates to induce the Belgians to join the Excavators’ Society.” The General Council committed itself to use its influence to Prevent the importation of any more Belgian workers at reduced Prices (ibid., p. 424).
3. In August 1866, employers declared a lock-out involving over 700 Manchester tailors in reply to demands to regulate working hours and rates for different operations. These demands were put forward over the increasing use of machinery in the sewing industry. The Manchester tailors applied for backing to the Executive Committee of the London Operative Tailors’ Protective Association, whose President was Matthew Lawrence. On September 12, a preliminary agreement was reached between the employers and the workers on a return to work.
4. The room at 18, Bouverie Street was rented in December 1865 at £10 per annum by the Industrial Newspaper Company, publishers of The Workman’s Advocate, the official organ of the International Working Men’s Association (see Note 8). The General Council used this room for its meetings and acted as sub-tenant, paying £5 a year. On September 29 1866, the newspaper’s editorial board moved to 282, The Strand. he General Council continued to use the room at 18, Bouverie Street until June 25, 1867.
5. Reference is to the General Council members — delegates to the Geneva Congress of the International held between September 3 and 8, 1866.
The Geneva Congress was attended by 60 delegates from the different sections of the International Association and workers’ societies in Britain, France. Germany, and Switzerland. Hermann Jung was in the chair. The Congress agenda approved by the London Conference of September 1865, included 11 items. Marx, who was unable to go to Geneva, drew up his “Instructions for the Delegates of the Provisional General Council, The Different Questions” (see The General Council. 1864-1866, pp. 340-51) that elaborated on and made more explicit the first programme documents of the International. The “Instructions” were read at he Geneva Congress as the General Council’s official report. The Proudhonists, who commanded one-third of the Congress votes, counterposed Marx’s “Instructions” with a comprehensive programme on all items on the Congress agenda put forward in a special essay (Memoire). Of the nine points in Marx’s “instructions,” six were adopted as Congress resolutions: on the international union of forces, on shorter working hours, on child and female labour, on co-operative labour, on trade unions, and on the standing armies. The Congress adopted Johann Philipp Becker’s resolution on the Polish question and approved the Rules and Administrative Regulations of the International Working Men’s Association.
Carter, Odger, Eccarius, and Jung attended the Geneva Congress as the General Council representatives, Dupont as the delegate from the French branch in London, Lawrence — from the London Tailors’ Society, and Cremer — from the London Carpenters’ Society.
6. At the General Council meeting on August 21, 1966, William Cremer and Friedrich Lessner put forward the demand to establish cheaper international postal rates. In proposing the resolution Cremer emphasised that the prevailing high postal rates seriously hampered the establishment of contacts between the workers of various countries. The Council decided “that the delegates at the Geneva Congress be requested to urge on their respective governments the necessity and advantages of a system of International and Ocean Penny Postage” (see The General Council. 1864-1866, p. 227).
7. This refers to a small group of French students and workers, followers of Blanqui, who came to the Geneva Congress without any credentials. One of them, Protot, spoke at the first Congress meeting on September 3 and insisted that they be granted a deciding vote. He accused Tolain and Fribourg, members of the Paris Committee, of supporting the Bonapartists. This accusation had been repeatedly made by the bourgeois republicans before. On the insistence of the London delegates it was decided to allow the Blanqui supporters to participate in the Congress with voice but no vote. This did not suit them, however, and they left the Congress.
8. By order of the London Conference of 1865 (see The General Council. 1864-1866, p. 239), the London weekly, The Workman’s Advocate, was declared the International’s official organ. On February 10, 1866 the paper was renamed The Commonwealth and was published until July 20, 1867. Marx was a member of the editorial board up to June 9, 1866. In February 1966 he succeeded in getting John George Eccarius appointed editor. The paper published reports of General Council meetings and other International documents. Opportunist trade-union leaders, however, contrived to nullify the influence of Marx’s supporters and in April 1866 appointed George Odger editor-in-chief. Through the compromise policy pursued by the union leaders the paper gradually began to depart from the International’s platform. On September 8, 1866 it declared itself to be the “Organ of the Reform Movement” and in fact became the organ of the radical bourgeoisie.
The Commonwealth No. 183, September 8, 1866, in addition to a small article of a general nature entitled “The Geneva Congress,” carried a notice, dated September 4, about the opening of this working men’s congress; in addition, issue No. 184, September 15, published two reports, of September 6 and 10, which described the Congress proceedings in brief.
9. The next Council meeting heard a report of the deputation to the model pattern makers.
10. The weekly La Voix de l'Avenir was published from December 31, 1865 in La Chaux-de-Fonds (Switzerland) with the sub-title “Moniteur des sciences , du travail, des societies et associations ouvrieres.” On May 26, 1867, beginning with No. 21, this changed to “Journal de l'Association internationale des travailleurs.” The newspaper, greatly influenced by the Proudhonists, was published by Pierre Coullery, a Swiss physician and judge, up to the end of 1868. It regularly carried information on the co-operative movement.
11. Reference is to Marx’s “Instructions for the Delegates of the Provisional General Council” (see Note 5).
12. Grütli-Verein — a petty-bourgeois reformist organisation founded in 1838 as an educational society of Swiss workers and artisans.
13. The London Conference of the International Working Men’s Association was held between September 25 and 29, 1865. It was attended by General Council members and leaders of various sections.
The Conference heard the General Council’s report and approved its financial report and the agenda of the forthcoming congress. The London Conference played a big role in the first years of the International when it was taking shape as an organisation. It was prepared and conducted under Marx’s leadership.
The last Conference meeting, which was held on September 29, 186.5 and which discussed a number of organisational and financial questions, adopted a decision defining the financial obligations of the International’s sections in different countries to the General Council. In accordance with this decision, the French sections were to contribute £40 (see The General Council. 1864-1866, p. 249).
14. According to the Rules of the International Working Men’s Association, approved by the Geneva Congress of 1866, the General Council elected by the Congress was to select, from its own members, the officers necessary for the business transactions. By nominating Marx for President the British members of the Council challenged the French Proudhonists who tried to get the Geneva Congress to adopt the view that persons not directly engaged in manual labour should neither hold official posts in Working-class organisations nor even be admitted to them.
15. The election of Peter Fox as General Secretary instead of William Cremer, who had occupied the post for two years, showed that the reformist trade-union leaders in the International central bodies were in a weaker position. “At the Central Council meeting held last night,” Marx wrote to Engels on September 26, 1866, “there were all kinds or dramatic scenes. Mr. Cremer, for example, almost broke a blood vessel when Fox was appointed General Secretary instead of him. He only just managed to control himself.”
16. The Standing Committee, also known as the Sub-Committee, was the General Council’s executive body that historically developed from the commission elected in October 1864 to draw up the programme documents of the International Association. The Standing Committee usually met every Saturday. Its members included the Council president (the post was abolished in September 1867), the vice-president, the treasurer, the general secretary, and corresponding secretaries for different countries. Marx exercised his day-by-day leadership of the General Council’s work mainly through the Standing Committee, of which he was a member in his capacity as Corresponding Secretary for Germany.
17. See Note 4.
18. Reference is to the exact financial contributions to be made by the societies affiliated to the International.
19. A letter from the Amalgamated Society of Carpenters and Joiners thanking the General Council for the deputation it had sent them was read at the Council meeting of October 9, 1866.
The Amalgamated Society of Carpenters and Joiners, founded in 1860, was one of the biggest and most influential trade unions on the London Trades Council. Robert Applegarth, its General Secretary, became an active member of the General Council from 1868. Despite the fact that many of the Society’s local branches joined the International at various times, the question of the affiliation of the Society as a whole was never decided.
20. Charles Longuet was appointed Corresponding Secretary for Belgium at the Council meeting of January 16, 1866 (see The General Council. 1864-1866, p. 159).
21. Espiegle — satirical weekly of an anti-Bonapartist and anti-clerical nature, was published in Brussels first in Flemish and then, from 1865, in French. Among its editors were French emigrés who kept in touch with the French petty-bourgeois emigrés in London and, in particular, with those in the French branch. in London who were hostile to Marx (see Note 90). The newspaper featured the views of these emigrés in its columns.
22. La Rive Gauche — weekly journal, was published in Brussels from October 20, 1864 to August 5, 1866 by a group of French emigrés, Left republicans and Blanquists. Charles Longuet was one of its editors. Paul Lafargue, Cesar De Paepe, and other members of the International contributed to the journal. It readily published documents of the International and carried announcements about its activities.
23. La Tribune du Peuple — Belgian democratic paper, was published in Brussels from May 1861 to April 1869. The paper was founded by a group of workers and petty-bourgeois intellectuals, adherents to utopian socialism and members of an atheist society called The People. The paper, in effect, became the International’s organ in Belgium in August 1865, and officially so in January 1866. De Paepe, Lafargue, and other members of the International Association collaborated with the paper.
La Tribune du People did not publish the announcement about the convocation of the Congress. Issue No. 35, September 2, 1866, carried a note stating that the editors did not know the date of the Congress.
24. The Belgian democrat Leon Fontaine who took part in the activi ties of the. Belgian sections of the International attended the General Council meeting of June 26, 1866 held in London (see The General Council. 1864-1866, pp. 203-04).
25. Reference is to the resolution adopted by the General Council on April 17, 1866 (see The General Council. 1864-1866, p. 180).
26. Prudhomme and Buzon were appointed correspondents of the General Council for Bordeaux on April 17, 1866.
27. Marcheval, the Secretary of the Vienne branch of the International, in his letter of September 26, 1866, wrote that in Vienne numbering 25,000 people one-third of the population were occupied in the cloth factories. The hard conditions of the workers, both men and women, were aggravated by the system of “workers’ books” which were filled in by the employers, and vetted by the police. Without these “books” the workers could not leave the factory or get another job. Marcheval’s letter, translated into English by Fox, was published in The Working Man No. 11, June 8, 1867.
28. Reference is to the weekly paper The International Courier (Le Courrier International) published in London from November 1864 to July 1867 in English and French. In 1867 the paper was the International’s organ. Its editor, Joseph Collet, a French democrat and emigré in London, also published at the time the English weekly, The Working Man. In 1867 all these three periodicals regularly published General Council documents and reports of the International’s activities.
29. The World Exhibition of 1867 was held in Paris from April 1 to November 1. As during the 1862 World Exhibition in London, various bourgeois philanthropists and social reformers, including certain people close to Napoleon IV’s Government and the British Liberal Party, tried to utilise the growing interest of the Workers of different countries in science and technology in order to bring them under their influence. The General Council and the leaders of the Paris section, however, endeavoured to use the visit of foreign workers to Paris to strengthen international ties and advance the ideas of the International Working Men’s Association.
30. For details concerning the confiscation of the documents of the Geneva Congress of the International at the French frontier see the General Council’s statement “The French Government and the International Association of Working Men.”
31. Dassy was elected delegate to the Geneva Congress by the Workers’ Mutual Aid Society of Cerignola, of which Garibaldi was the Honorary President. The mandate was dated September 15, 1866.
32. Becker’s opening speech at the Geneva Congress made on September 3, 1866 was published in full in Der Vorbote No. 9, September 1866, and issued as a separate leaflet. The English translation was given in The Commonwealth No. 199, December 29, 1866.
Der Vorbote — monthly organ of the German-speaking sections of the International in Switzerland, was published in Geneva from 1866 to 1871; Becker was its editor-in-chief. Der Vorbote generally put forward the policy of Marx and the General Council and regularly published the documents of the International and information about the activities of the International’s sections in the different countries. It widely circulated in Germany and did much to spread the ideas of the International there.
33. Pierre Vésinier, a French petty-bourgeois publicist, was arrested in Belgium on July 7, 1866 as the author of several pamphlets against Napoleon Ill, and prosecuted by the Belgian Government for lese majeste with reference to the monarch of a foreign country.
34. Appeal of the English Journeyman Hairdressers’ Early Closing Association to their Continental fellow-workmen was published in The Commonwealth No. 188, October 13, 1866. “With the sanction of the Central Council of the International Association,” the appeal stated, “we ask you to give us your cordial support.”
La Tribune du People No. 42, October 21, 1866, carried the following notification from the editors: “The London hairdressers have just come out on strike for shorter working hours. In connection with this, the Committee of the International Association asks us to warn foreign workers against all attempts likely to be made by the employers [to recruit them]. This is a question of solidarity!’
35. This, apparently, refers to one of the master tailors’ meetings that led to the formation, in September 1866, of the Master Tailors’ Association for the Whole Kingdom. The Association united representatives of more than 200 firms and aimed at combating strikes by exchanging information and establishing fixed rates on the basis of which the employers could come to terms with the workers irrespective of whether they were union members or not.
36. This document was prepared by the Paris section for the Geneva Congress. It contained a detailed exposition of Proudhonist views on the main issues of the workers’ struggle and was supported by the Lyons and Rouen sections. It was read as the report of the French delegates at the Congress morning and evening sessions held on September 4. The full text of the Memoire was published in Brussels in September 1866 under the title Congrès de Geneve. Memoire des delegues français.
In June 1866 at the Sheffield Conference of trade-union delegates it was decided to form a National Trades Alliance (United Kingdom Alliance of Organised Trades) to co-ordinate the struggle against lock-outs. Matthew Lawrence, as representative of the Operative Tailors’ Association, was a member of the committee elected to draw up the Rules of the Alliance. The Rules were approved at the Manchester Conference of January 1-4, 1867. The Alliance, embracing 53 trade unions, with a total membership of nearly 60,000, existed until the end of 1870.
For the London Trades Council see Note 42.
38. Reference is to the resolution adopted at the previous Council meeting that the contributions of the societies that had joined the International Association in their corporate capacity should be a halfpenny per member annually.
39. See Note 4.
40. The workers’ paper Travail, published in Ghent, in its issue No. 3, dated September 30, 1866, reproduced the brief report of the Geneva Congress from the September issue of the co-operative societies’ monthly Annales du Travail (published in Brussels and Paris from August 1866). In connection with the elections to the General Council the report stated: “All Committee members were re-elected except one who has been excluded from the Council by a unanimous vote for his slander on the French. delegates.”
41. The General Council’s debt to John Leno, the owner of a printshop, was £9 8s.
42. This refers to the London Trades Council first elected at a conference of trade-union delegates held in London in May 1860. Heading the London trade unions numbering many thousand members, the Council was quite influential among all British workers. The leaders of the following large trade unions played a big role in the Council. the Amalgamated Society of Carpenters and Joiners (Applegarth), the Shoemakers’ Society (Odger), the Operative Bricklayers’ Society (Coulson) and the Amalgamated Engineers (Allan). The General Council did its best to draw into the International the broad mass of British workers and endeavoured, on the one hand, to get the local trade-union organisations affiliated to it and, on the other, to induce the London Trades Council to join the International as a British section. “The London Council of the English Trades Unions (its secretary is our President, Odger) is just discussing whether it should call itself the British section of the International Association. If that is done, then in a certain sense, we shall have control of the working class here, and we can push on the movement very much,” Marx wrote to Ludwig Kugelmann on October 13, 1866.
The report of the General Council deputation that attended a meeting of the London Trades Council was read at the next meeting.
43. The weekly paper Cooperator was published by Henry Pitman in Manchester from 1860 to 1871.
44. See Note 50.
45. Despite this decision of the General Council, the Paris Committee published, at the close of 1866, the Statuts de l'Association Internationale des Travailleurs. They reproduced the text of the first edition issued by the Proudhonist leaders of the Paris section in January 1865 which contained a number of inaccuracies and distortions. In particular, in the third paragraph of the Preamble to the Rules reading: “the economic emancipation of the working classes is therefore the great end to which every political movement ought to be subordinate as a means,” the words “as a means” were omitted. Simultaneously the Paris section published its rules — “Reglement du Bureau de Paris.” Both documents were published in Paris, in the Rouge printing shop.
46. Dupont’s correspondence in Le Courrier Français No. 1, January 6, 1867, states that the United Excavators’ Society which joined the International numbered 28,000 members.
47. See Note 4.
48. The text of the declaration addressed by a group of political emigrants in New York to James Stephens, one of the leaders of the Irish revolutionary Fenians, was also published in La Tribune du Peuple No. 49, December’ 9, 1866. The declaration expressed “full sympathy for the Irish movement admirably led by the republican patriot James Stephens.”
49. The same meeting of the Standing Committee, October 20, 1866, apparently decided to publish the fo llowing statement in the Belgian press:
“In view of the reclamations addressed to the Central Council apropos of the factual errors contained in the different newspaper reports of the Geneva Congress, the Council declares that these reports were drawn up without any knowledge of the original documents handed in to the Council for keeping; to obtain exact information about the proceedings of the Congress, it is necessary to wait for the official publication, the preparation of which is entrusted to the Council.
“On behalf of the Central Council in London,
“P. Lafargue.” The statement was published in La Tribune du Peuple No. 44, November 4, 1866.
50. In addition to membership cards, the local sections of the International used membership books which fully reproduced the text of the Rules and Administrative Regulations and had several pages for registering membership dues and loans received from the mutual aid societies. In France, membership books (carnets de membre) were largely used.
In view of the numerous requests from the French sections of the International, the Standing Committee decided to publish in London, in French. the Rules approved by the Geneva Congress in the form of carnets. Since the Congress documents were confiscated by the French police and were unavailable at the time, it was necessary to prepare anew the Rules and Regulations in French. The job was done by Marx and Lafargue. The manuscript begun by Marx and continued by Lafargue is extant, and it coincides with the text of the pamphlet Association Internationale des Travailleurs. Statuts et Reglements that appeared in London in November 1866. Of the 1,000 copies printed, 800 copies sent to France were confiscated at the French frontier, and the edition was not circulated.
51. The report of the Trades Council meeting held on October 17, 1866 and attended by the General Council’s deputation was published on October 26. 1866 in The Commonwealth No. 189 and in The Bee-Hive No. 262.
“A deputation,” the report stated, waited upon the Council for the purpose of showing to the Council the mutual advantages likely to accrue from an amalgamation of the Trades Council with the International Association. Many forcible arguments were brought forward in support of the suggestion, and were ordered to be in the report for the consideration and determination of the said delegates.”
52. The National Reform League was founded in London in 1849 by a group of Chartists headed by Bronterre O'Brien. Its programme contained the demand for universal suffrage and a number of social measures, including nationalisation of land, currency reform, educational reform, etc. In the mid-sixties the League still united many former Chartists (Milner, Harris, the Murray brothers, and others). Alfred Walton, President of the National Reform League, established contacts with the General Council as far back as 1865. The question of the League joining the International was discussed at the meetings of October 30 and November 6, 1866 and February 5, 1867, and was decided in favour of affiliation.
53. See Note 29.
54. La Tribune du Peuple No. 44, November 4, 1866, carried the following note:
“London, Golden Square, November 2, 1866.
“Citizens, the London basket-makers are in dispute with their employers. The latter want to smash the workers’ society so as to exploit them more. With this aim in view, a certain Mr. Packer is to leave any day now for Belgium to hire Belgian basketmakers so as to make the British workers capitulate. Plans of this sort must be defeated by the strength of our organisation and by our solidarity. The Belgian workers should do their duty and reject this agent’s offers, thereby making it possible for their British brothers to advocate their just demands. That will be a small victory in awaiting the great triumph. Greetings and fraternity.
“A. Besson, member of the Central Council, Corresponding Secretary for Belgium.”
Der Vorbote No. 11, November 1866, published the following:
“The General Council in London informs us that the journeyman hairdressers and basket-makers are on strike.. .. There is no need to warn the German and Swiss workers engaged in these industries not to let themselves be hired for work in London since they do not want to betray the interests of their comrades in England!’
55. Until the end of October 1866, The Commonwealth regularly published the General Council’s advertisements reminding the International Association members of the expiration of payment of membership dues for 1866 and inviting them to attend the Council’s meetings held every Tuesday. In November 1866 the text relating to membership dues was replaced by an appeal for voluntary contributions to defray the expenses connected with the publication of the Geneva Congresses (1866) Minutes.
56. See Note 52.
57. The report of the deputation that visited the Elastic Web-Weavers’ Society was read at the next meeting of the General Council.
58. Reference is to the special committee, appointed at the Council meeting of October 23, 1866, to arrange the visit of British workers to the Paris World Exhibition of 1867 (see Note 29).
59. The detailed report of the Geneva Congress was published in Der Vorbote Nos. 9, 10 and 11, September, October and November, 1866.
60. See Note 36.
61. The French translation of the appeal of the English journeyman hairdressers to their Continental fellow-workmen (see Note 34) was published in La Tribune du Peuple No. 43, October 28, 1866.
62. The French newspaper La Cooperation, the organ of workers’ co-operatives, was under the influence of the bourgeois republicans; it was published in Paris, twice monthly, between the summer of 1866 and the end of 1868. The newspaper was sub-titled “Journal du Progres Social.” It was the continuation of the journal L'Association (Paris-Brussels, 1865-66) and was succeeded by the weekly La Reforme (Paris, 1869), which very soon ceased publication.
63. In connection with Weston’s objection, The Commonwealth No. 192, November 10, 1866, carried the following announcement:
“The International Working Men’s Association.
“The General Council have under consideration a resolution for striking off from their roll of members inveterate absentees. Notice is hereby given that the aforesaid question will be discussed and probably decided at the next Tuesdays meeting of the General Council.”
64. On September 23, 1866, a meeting of delegates to the Geneva Congress was held in La Chaux-de-Fonds which was attended by representatives of the Neuchatel, Sonvillier, and St. Imier sections. Coullery made a report on the proceedings of the Congress.
65. This refers to the form of application for working men’s societies wishing to join the International Association which was adopted by the General Council in 1865 (see The General Council. 1864-1866, the illustration between pp. 292-93). Apart from this form of application — the size was 16x8.5 cm. — there was another form, somewhat larger. The printed text of the application and the name of the society, its address, and the date — all given in handwriting were on a large card to be hung on a wall. There still exists a card confirming the admission, on February 21, 1865, of the Operative Bricklayers’ Society as an affiliated branch of the International.
66. At the end of 1866 Cremer made a tour of the east coast of England (Norwich, Durham, Yarmouth, etc.) as the Reform League’s representative. His report of the tour was published in The Commonwealth No. 202, January 19, 1867.
67. At the height of its activities the Reform League (see Note 200) had numerous branches in London and other English towns; the whole organisation was headed by the Council and the more narrow Executive Committee.
John Hales’s proposal, rejected by the General Council, boiled down to the establishment in England — on a territorial basis — of independent sections of the International united on a national scale with the Federal Council existing separately from the General Council. Meanwhile, it was the form of organisation adopted for Britain in 1864 — collective affiliation of working men’s societies and whole trade unions directly connected to the General Council — that at the time provided the International with the widest possible basis among the English proletariat. Fulfilling the functions of the Federal Council for Britain until the autumn of 1871, the General Council, on which various British workers’ organisations were widely represented, could more effectively influence the workers in Britain by drawing them into joint action with the workers of other countries and educating them in the spirit of proletarian internationalism.
68. The Universal Tourist Company placed special advertisements in The Commonwealth and other workers’ papers about arrangements for workers’ collective excursions, at reduced prices, to the Paris World Exhibition of 1867.
69. Joseph Collet, the editor of The International Courier, headed the International Co-operative Printing Office in London which published, by order of the General Council, the Rules and Administrative Regulations in French (see Note 50).
70. On November 28, 1866 a general delegate meeting of the London trade unions was to be held to discuss the question of the London Trades Council joining the International (see Note 42); the meeting attended by 40 delegates was held only on December 12, 1866 in the Bell Inn, the Old Bailey. Due to lack of time the General Council deputation was not heard. The next delegate meeting, December 19, was attended by Jung, Lessner, and Hales. After their speeches the following resolution was adopted: “That the Trades Council he empowered to consult with the Council of the International Working Men’s Association, and to draw up a constitution to form a basis for co-operation, the same to be laid before a future delegate meeting of the trades of London called for that purpose.” Detailed reports of these meetings appeared in The Commonwealth Nos. 197 and 198, December 15 and 22, 1866.
71. Le Travailleur Associe, a small paper concerned with questions of workers’ co-operation, began to appear in Ghent (Belgium) at the close of 1866.
72. For details see pp. 271-76 of the present volume.
73. Michaelmas Day — September 29 — a quarter day in England on which a payment of the third quarter’s rent falls due.
74. Announcement about the evening arranged by the United Excavators’ Society and the presence of the General Council members, Jung and Carter, at it was published in The Commonwealth No. 197, December 15, 1866.
75. The letter was apparently from Canessa, one of the leaders of the federation of Genoa working men’s co-operative associations. The annual congress of the working men’s associations of Northern Italy, which was planned to be held first in Palermo and then in Venice, did not take place either in 1866 or in 1867.
76. It is not evident from the General Council’s Minute Books that Cesare Orsini was ever elected to the Council, and his name does not occur in any of the lists of the General Council members.
77. The following note written by Dupont to Marx on December 1, 1867 shows that preparations for printing the Minutes of the Geneva Congress were made by the Standing Committee even earlier:
“Dear Marx, I have read the Minutes, and it seems to me they contain some errors. If you are unable to attend the, Sub-Committee meeting this evening, be so kind as to forward the Minutes by a messenger, for we cannot do anything without them.
“My respects to your good family. Sincerely yours,
78. Reference is to the “Inaugural Address of the Working Men’s International Association” written by Marx in October 1864 (see The General Council. 1864-1866, pp. 277-87).
79. The report of the General Council deputation that visited the Coach-Trimmers and Harness-Makers’ Society was delivered at the Council meeting of February 26, 1867.
80. After the repeated deferment of the question of the London Trades Council’s affiliation to the International, which was due to the struggle between the reformist leaders of the Council who opposed affiliation and local trade-union representatives — participants in the general delegate meeting of December 12, 1866 (see Note 70) — it was finally decided against at the London Trades Council meetings of January 9 and 14, 1867.
81. See Note 50.
82. Le Courrier Français — newspaper of the Left republicans, published in Paris from 1861 to 1868, at first as a weekly and from June 1867 onwards as a daily. 0. Vermorel, a Proudhonist, was editor from May 20, 1866. From that time the newspaper became in fact the International’s organ in France. As such it published the documents of the International and Dupont’s reports from England. It also published Marx’s Preface to the first German edition of Capital, Vol. I, translated by Paul and Laura Lafargue.
83. Reference is to the articles by bourgeois publicists L. Reybaud, “L'Economie politique des ouvriers,” in Revue des deux mondes of November 1, 1866, and Y. E. Alaux, “Une forme nouvelle du socialisme,” in Revue contemporaine of October 15, 1866, as well as to the leading article in Fortnightly Review No. 37, December 1866.
84. The London weekly Reynolds’s Newspaper was founded in 1850 by Reynolds, a radical and one of the leaders of the Right wing of the Chartist movement. While regularly publishing articles on workers’ life, the newspaper pursued the policy of the bourgeois radicals who sought to bring the labour movement under their influence.
85. See Note 36,
86. Reference is to the report of the Geneva Congress drawn up by a member of the Geneva section, Czwlerzakiewicz, a Pole known by the pseudonym Card. His pamphlet, Congrès ouvrier de l'Association Internationale des Travailleurs, tenu à Geneve du 3 au 8 septembre 1866, came out in Geneva in September 1866.
87. Reference is to the General Council’s balance-sheet up to September 1, 1866.
88. The announcement about the Polish meeting of January 22, 1867 was published as a leaflet.
89. Reference is to the London Pattern-Drawers and Print-Cutters’ Protection Society founded early in 1866.
90. Reference is to the French branch in London founded in the autumn of 1865. Besides revolutionary-proletarian members (Dupont, Jung, Lafargue), it included petty-bourgeois emigrés (Victor Le Lubez and later Felix Pyat).
91. The report of the deputation that visited the Coach-Makers’ Friendly Society was presented at the Council meeting of January 15, 1867.
92. The English translation of the report of the Geneva Congress, published in Der Vorbote Nos. 9, 10 and 11, September, October and November 1866, appeared in The Commonwealth Nos. 198, 199, 200, 203, 204 and 210, of December 22 and 29, 1866, January 5 and 26, February 2 and March 16, 1867.
93. The first annual general meeting of the Excavators’ Society, held on January 21, 1867 at the Lambeth Baths under the chairmanship of G. M. Murphy, heard the secretary’s report in which it was stated that the society had 14 branches numbering about 800 members. The report of the meeting was published in The Bee-Hive No. 276, January 26, 1867.
94. Reference is to the mass demonstration being prepared by the Reform League (see Note 106).
Concerning the Reform League see Note 200.
95. An invitation for the General Council’s delegation to attend the London Trades Council meeting on Wednesday, January 9, 1867, was sent by Odger as the Secretary of the London Council.
96. Reference is to the law of February 19, 1858 which provided the government and the emperor with unlimited powers to exile to various parts of France and Algeria or to deport from French territory altogether all persons suspected of a hostile attitude towards the Second Empire.
97. See Note 7.
98. On January 16, 1867, delegates of the Reform League branches and representatives of friendly organisations met in the Cambridge Hall, Newman Street, London, to discuss joint preparations for a mass demonstration (see Note 106). Among the organisations, represented at the meeting, The Bee-Hive No. 275, January 19, 1867, mentioned. the International Working Men’s Association.
99. The delegation from the Block-Cutters’ Society appeared at the next General Council meeting.
100. The meeting, organised by the General Council jointly with the Central London Section of the United Polish Exiles, to celebrate the fourth anniversary of the Polish Insurrection of 1863, was held in the Cambridge Hall, London, on January 22, 1867. As is evident from the General Council Minutes and the reports of the meeting that appeared in the London papers, in Der Vorbote No. 2, February 1867, and in the Polish paper Glos Wolny Nos. 129 and 130, of January 31 and February 10, 1867, Marx took an active part in the organisation and proceedings of the meeting: the rough copy of Marx’s speech at the meeting survived. The text of the four resolutions to be submitted to the meeting was reproduced in a leaflet specially issued for the meeting.
101. Reference is apparently to the Coventry Ribbon-Weavers’ Association mentioned in the General Council report to the Lausanne Congress of 1867.
102. The report of a deputation to the Bookbinders’ Society was presented by Jung to the General Council meeting of February 5, 1867.
103. A letter from Beniere, of Fleurieux-sur-Saône, dated January 19, 1867, was addressed to Dupont and published in La Voix de l'Avenir No. 9, March 3; the letter informed the Council that a consumers’ co-operative society was founded there, its name being Coal Shop of the International Working Men’s Association.
104. As is evident from the General Council report to the Lausanne Congress, the Coach-Trimmers’ Society that met at The Crown did join the International.
105. See Note 52.
106. The mass reform demonstration, held in London on February 11, 1867, was organised by the Reform League jointly with the London Trades Council and other London workers’ organisations. Nearly 25,000 people took part in the demonstration, most of them workers. The demonstration ended with a number of meetings which adopted resolutions protesting against the partial reform bill moved by the Conservative Government.
107. In his letter to Jung, dated January 23, 1867, Card, a member of the Geneva section committee, urgently requested the General Council to speed up the publication of the Minutes of the Geneva Congress. Card also recommended the Council to discuss the question of insurance offices and emphasised that the workers must organise their own insurance offices free of the employers’ tutelage.
108. Early in February 1867, the miners of Marchienne (near Charleroi, Belgium) went on strike, protesting against the 10 per cent fall in wages and the transition to a shorter working week. The number of strikers rapidly increased; the regular troops which were set on the strikers dispersed them.
In connection with the shooting of the Belgian miners and iron-workers, the General Council addressed an appeal “To the Miners and Iron-Workers of Great Britain” calling on them to support the victims of the police actions. The appeal was drawn up by Eccarius and published in The International Courier on March 13, 1867. As a result of this appeal, the bereaved families received assistance in cash.
109. The Paris delegation to the Geneva Congress consisted of eleven workers: Bourdon, Varlin, Guyard, Camelinat, Cultin, Fribourg, Malon, Murat, Perrachon, Tolain and Chemale, all of whom were elected to a new committee. Informing the Council of this, the Paris Committee emphasised that the leadership remained in the hands of the Proudhonist workers.
Anticipating the General Council, one of the duties of which was to prepare the annual Congress, the Paris Committee, as far back as February 1867, proposed the following items for the Lausanne Congress agenda: 1) Mutualism. as the basis of social relations. 2) Capital and labour. 3) Equality of men and women in social functions. 4) Definition and role of the state.
110. Le Courrier International No. 7, February 16, 1867, started publication of the Minutes of the 1866 Geneva Congress. In view of the great demand, the first part of the Congress Minutes was reprinted in a triple issue (Nos. 8, 9, and 10) that appeared on March 9, 1867.
111. In February 1867, the bronze-workers of Barbedienne’s works in Paris went on strike demanding revision of existing rates. On January 25, the Paris Bronze-Workers’ Credit Society (Société de credit et de solidarite des ouvriers du bronze) sent a circular to its members calling on them to prepare for a general solidarity strike. In reply to this, the owners of 120 enterprises adopted, at their meeting of February 14, a resolution threatening a lock-out if the society were not dissolved by February 25. At their general meeting, held on February 24 and attended by nearly 3,000 people, the bronze-workers resolved to fight the employers. The General Council was immediately informed of this through a delegation of bronze-workers specially sent to London, the delegation consisting of Camelinat, Kin, and Valdun joined by Tolain and Fribourg. Without waiting for the regular Council meeting, Jung, Dupont, and other members of the Standing Committee began to collect funds to aid the Paris workers and sent to the London papers the following appeal that included part of Fribourg’s letter. The appeal was published in The Working Man No. 4, April 6, 1867.
“Sir, — I have received a letter from the Executive Committee of the International Working Men’s Association relative to the pending lock-out of 1,500 bronze-workers in Paris, from which I sent you the following extracts.
Eugene Dupont, Secretary for France to the International Working Men’s Association. Paris, February 27.
“We invite you in the name of the Association to make a great effort on behalf of a large number of Parisian working men, who make application to their London brethren, through the medium of the International Association.
“The bronze-workers, to the number of 5,000, formed about a year ago a trade union after the model of and to serve the same uses as an English trade union.
“You can easily imagine that such a society was from the first regarded with an evil eye by the masters; they therefore resolved to destroy it on the first occasion, and they found a pretext for declaring war against it in a demand recently made upon five masters by the society. A coalition of capitalists was formed on the principle of demanding that the working men should abandon
their society or leave the working shops. As soon as this compact was, made 87 houses in bronze-work forthwith proceeded to lock out 1,500 working men. Ought the latter to give in? Manifestly not. We cannot but applaud their spirit.
“The society is paying to every locked-out Working man 20 francs (16 s.) per week, and ‘there’s the rub’. When the lock-out commenced it had in its treasury about 35,000 francs (£ 1,400), but this sum is now reduced to about 20,000 francs (£ 800).
“It is necessary that they be aided by a loan, and if your colleagues can procure them a loan of from 10,000 to 15,000 francs (£ 400 to £ 600), the issue of the lock-out will not be doubtful, and Messrs. Barbedienne and Victor Paillard, who are the leaders of the coalition of masters, would immediately find themselves isolated and compelled to cave in.
“The society would be able to repay about 5,000 francs per month to the trade union which would make the advance.
“The trade unions of Paris are preparing to sustain the workers in bronze with all their might, but aid from abroad would be invaluable from every point of view.
“Bear in mind that the masters cannot hold out for long, and if you are successful, and at the same time prompt in your application, we shall have an immense success.
“The said society has already been the means of increasing the wages of the trade. The combat which the masters are waging with them is one of life or death. If the masters come off victors it is all over with the society, and, at the same time, with all the ameliorations that it has been able to effect; if, on the other hand, it triumphs, the results are incalculable.
“Prithee, lose no time, and ask the English working men to dispense with their formalities and act with Gallic impetuosity, such is our prayer to them. F.
“We hear that upon the receipt of this appeal, the Central Council of the International Association of Working Men appointed delegates to wait upon the different trades societies, and that the Trades Council at their last meeting have given credentials to the same delegates for the same object!”
112. Dupont’s correspondence placed in Le Courrier Français No. 10, March 10, 1867, stated that the London Day Working Bookbinders’ Society, numbering 400 members, decided to give the Paris bronze-workers 125 francs and to lend them 250 francs.
113. The London Trades Council meeting, specially convened on the General Council’s initiative on Monday, March 4, heard the report of three delegates from the Paris bronze-workers and unanimously adopted the following resolution:
“That credentials be granted to the International Association’ to appeal to the trades’ societies for assistance for the bronze workers of Paris.” The resolution was published on March 9 in, The Bee-Hive No. 282 and The Commonwealth No. 209.
114. This resolution was adopted by the Standing Committee in connection with the attacks (renewed after the Geneva Congress) made by Vésinier a petty-bourgeois publicist, and Le Lubez, connected with ier, upon the leaders of the Paris section whom they accused of collaborating with the Bonapartists.
115. This meeting of the French branch of the International in London (see Note 90) was held at a time when a delegation from the Paris section was in London in connection with the bronze-workers’ strike early in March 1867.
116. The question of the General Council’s representatives visiting the Curriers’ Society was again raised at the Council meetings of April 2 and July 30, 1867.
117. Reference is apparently to the German Workers’ Educational Association (Deutscher-Arbeiter-Bildungs-Verein), founded in London in February 1840 by Karl Schapper, Joseph Moll, and other leaders of the League of the Just. In the early years of its existence the Association was strongly influenced by the utopian, egalitarian communism of Wilhelm Weitling. With the organisation of the Communist League, leadership of the Association passed entirely to the League’s local sections. The Educational Association was in close contact with the English Socialists and Chartists, with the organisations of the Fraternal Democrats and the French Social-Democrats. Marx and Engels actively participated in its work in 1847 and 1849-50. From November 1849 to September 1850, Marx read a series of lectures there on political economy and on the basic ideas of the Manifesto of the Communist Party.
On September 17, 1850, Marx and Engels and several of their followers withdrew from the Association when it came out in support of the minority in the dispute between the majority of the Communist League’s Central Committee, led by Marx and Engels, and the sectarian adventurist minority (the Willich-Schapper faction). At the close of the fifties, Marx again took an active part in the work of the Association.
Besides its headquarters at 2, Nassau Street, Soho, in the tavern of Heinrich Bolleter, a member of the Association, the Association, in the sixties, had two branches in East and South London, the Eintracht and the Teutonia. After the founding of the International, many of the Association’s members-Eccarius, Kaub, Lessner, Bolleter, Lochner, and others — were elected to the General Council where they played a notable role. On January 10, 1865 the German Workers’ Educational Association joined, in its corporate capacity, the International as a German section in London (The General Council. 1864-1866, pp. 62-64).
118. The report of a deputation to a meeting of tin plate-workers on April 10 was made at the Council meeting held on April 16, 1867.
119. The Lausanne section, having begun to organise the second congress of the International, to be held in Lausanne in September 1867, drew up a draft appeal in an utterly Proudhonist spirit. It rejected communism and asserted mutualism to be the basic principle of the International. In a covering letter to Jung, dated March 12, 1867, Graf, the Secretary of the Lausanne section, wrote that the section had no intention of infringing upon the General Council’s right to draw up the agenda of the congresses and therefore it sent its draft for the Council’s approval. The letter enclosed the proof sheets of the appeal. Despite its rejection by the General Council, which did its best to prevent the Proudhonists from taking the preparation of the congress in their hands, the appeal was published in the March issue of Bulletin de la Section de Lausanne and reprinted in La Voix de l'Avenir No, 12, March 24, 1867.
120. The Memoire of the French sections to the Geneva Congress (see Note 36) was published in Le Courrier International Nos. 20 and 21, May 18 and 25, 1867.
121. The Working Man No. 3, March 1, 1867, began publication of Marx’s “Instructions for the Delegates of the Provisional General Council” (see Note 5). It ceased publication on April 6, 1867 (No. 4).
122. The Manchester Trades Council was founded in August 1866 and united the trades societies in Manchester and Salford.
123. The broad movement of solidarity with the Paris bronze-workers, organised by the General Council, had greatly raised the strikers’ spirits and undermined the employers’ position. Of particular interest was the report of Camelinat and others about their visit to London made at a weekly general meeting on March 17, 1867. Following this meeting, negotiations between employers and workers started at individual enterprises, and on March 24 the representatives of the employers’ coalition agreed to introduce fixed rates for separate jobs.
124. The article about the Paris bronze-workers, strike was printed in La Voix de l'Avenir No. 10, March 10, 1867.
125. The strike of 20,000 London engine-drivers began on March 25, 1867. On March 26 Dupont sent a letter to Paris in the name of the General Council, requesting to place in the papers the announce. ment about the strike and to warn the French workers against attempts to hire them for work in England: “Whatever lucrative offers may be made to engine-drivers on the Continent,” Dupont wrote, “they must reject them in the name of international working-class solidarity.” Le Courrier Français Nos. 13 and 14, March 31 and April 7, 1867, and other French papers published announcements, signed by the Paris Committee members, containing the General Council’s warning.
126. Reference is to the French delegates’ Memoire written for the Geneva Congress (see Note 36); its text was reproduced in Le Courrier International Nos. 20 and 21, dated May 18 and 25, 1867, and, apparently, in English, in the respective issues of The International Courier.
127. The Brussels paper La Tribune du Peuple No. 4, April 30, 1867, published a letter by Alphonse Vandenhouten, the General Council’s correspondent in the Brussels Federal Council, saying: “The cigar-makers’ delegate to the General Council of the International Working Men’s Association in London reports that only 600 out of 700 workers affiliated to the Association are employed.... The request for the Belgian press is to give this information as wide publicity as possible!’
128. In March 1867 the Paris journeyman tailors began their struggle for higher wages. On March 24 nearly 5,000 tailors held a meeting at which they elected a committee for organising a resistance society. Deciding to call a strike on April 1, the committee enlisted the support of the Operative Tailors’ Protective Association in London whose President Matthew Lawrence wired on March 31: “Firmly confident in your success. Promise you all material and moral assistance.” The telegram received in reply stated: “The Paris tailors stopped work today at 4 o'clock. Express gratitude to our comrades — London workers — in the name of humanity and fraternity.” Both telegrams were immediately communicated to Marx. On April 11, Lawrence and Druitt, the other representative of the London Tailors’ Association, attended a meeting of the strike committee in Paris.
129. The report of the tailors’ meeting at the Alhambra Palace held on April 22 was published in The Commonwealth No. 216, April 27, 1867. Jung and Collet, members of the General Council, spoke to the meeting and informed it that the Brussels tailors had also called a strike for higher wages.
130. On April 3, 1867, the joint meeting of the Reform League Council and delegates from the League branches adopted a resolution moved by Odger congratulating the people of North Germany on their achievement of full representation in the elections to the North-German Reichstag. The resolution also tendered its thanks and gratitude to Count Bismarck “for the frank, manly, and noble expressions made by him as Prime Minister of Prussia on the happiness and general prosperity which must accrue to a nation governed on the principle of manhood suffrage.”
Marx was not present at this meeting of the General Council (April 16) because on April 10 he left for Germany where Volume I of Capital was being published at the time. He returned to London on May 19.
131. This resolution was reproduced in the leading article of The International Courier on April 24, 1867.
132. This resolution proposed on Marx’s instructions was printed in The International Courier No. 17, May 1, 1867.
133. See Note 50.
134. Bulletin de la Section de Lausanne — monthly bulletin, published by the Lausanne section of the International during the preparations for the Lausanne Congress. Only three issues appeared, March, April, and May 1867.
135. Der Vorbote No. 3, March 1867, published part of the election programme of the Saxon People’s Party (Volkspartei) drawn up for elections to the North-German Reichstag.
136. The American began publication in London early in 1867.
137. The Postmaster-General’s reply was read at the General Council meeting of May 14, 1867.
138. The question of the Amalgamated Bakers’ Union affiliating to the International was again raised at the General Council meeting on June 25.
The Bakers’ Union is not mentioned in the list of affiliated British trade unions presented to the Lausanne Congress of 1867.
139. In his letter to Jung, dated May 3, 1867, Dupleix wrote that a new committee of Geneva sections had been elected; this letter incorporated the above-mentioned letter from Basle. Dupleix’s letter also contained the Geneva Committee’s request to put on the agenda of the Lausanne Congress the following subject: “Slackness of Trade. Its Causes and Remedies.”
140. The address to the workers of Berlin and Germany in connection with the threat of war was signed by the leaders of the Lyons section (A. Richard, A. Schettel, L. Palix, and others), of the Vienne section (Marcheval), and of the Neuville-sur-Saône section (E. Beniere, L. Baudrand). It was published in La Voix de l'Avenir No. 18, May 5, 1867 and in Der Vorbote No. 6, June 1867.
141. As a result of the strike that lasted from April 8 to April 29, 1867, the Brussels Fraternal Society of Journeyman Tailors (Société fraternelle des ouvriers tailleurs) gained a 10 per cent increase in wages. This was largely due to pressure brought to bear on the owners of tailors’ establishments by manifestations of international proletarian solidarity during the strikes of the London and Paris tailors.
142. Napoleon III’s Government instituted proceedings against the leaders of the Fraternal Solidarity and Mutual Credit Association of Journeyman Tailors (Association fraternelle de solidarite et de credit mutuel des ouvriers tailleurs) that came into being during the Paris tailors’ strike and numbered over 2,000 members, charging them with founding an organisation without preliminary authorisation. The Association was disbanded and its leaders had to pay large fines.
143. The Marseilles section was organised in May 1867 by Jean Vasseur, a tin-plate worker. Its rules laid down that the international’s Central Council should sit in London, and envisaged the following tasks: providing work for the unemployed, organisation of credit, and labour statistics.
144. La Tribune du Peuple No. 4, April 30, 1867, carried an article about the curriers’ strike. “Had it not been for fraternal assistance from their Brussels comrades and particularly from their Paris comrades,” the article stated, “their efforts would have come to nought.”
145. The Algiers branch of the International was headed by Feuillet. It did not exist for long.
146. On March 13. 1867, the International’s section in La Chaux-de-Fonds heard James Guillaume’s report about simplified, phonetic spelling and admitted that orthographic reform would, to a considerable extent, make it easier for the workers to acquire knowledge. The section declared itself to be a branch of the Phonographic League that campaigned for reforms in the sphere of phonography. The subject of phonography was included in the agenda of the Lausanne Congress and Guillaume reported on it.
147. In April 1 867, the London tailors stopped work, demanding the introduction of common rates in all the big English cities. The strike lasted several months and involved over 7,000 tailors.
148. Reference is to Article 1 of the Administrative Regulations adopted by the Geneva Congress of 1866.
The question of the General Council’s prerogatives to organise the International’s general congress was again raised because of the continuous attempts made by the Lausanne section to take the congress preparations entirely into its own hands. Strongly influenced by the Proudhonists. this section acted in concert with the Paris Committee that did its best to limit the influence of the General Council and its proletarian revolutionary nucleus. On June 2, after this meeting of the General Council, the said Committee held its meeting in Paris attended by Graf, Secretary of the Lausanne section. The Paris Committee decided to demand that the Central Council in London immediately publish the final programme of the Lausanne Congress. An extract from the Minutes of the Paris meeting signed by the Committee members, was printed in the International’s newspapers La Voix de l'Avenir No. 24, June 16 1867, and La Tribune du Peuple No. 6, June 30, 1867.
149. As is evident from reports of the London Trades Council meetings of May 24 and 29, published in The Commonwealth No. 221, June 1, 1867, the meetings discussed the question of organising debates on the role and tasks of the trade unions. This idea was put forward by Odger who emphasised that the International’s participation in the debates would make it possible to discuss the question in all aspects, not only in connection with English conditions, but also in connection with conditions prevailing. on the Continent and in America. He also recommended that John Stuart Mill, Fawcett, Beesly, Harrison, Ludlow, and other bourgeois-radical publicists and economists should be invited to take part in the debates. Edgar, member of the Trades Council, said he believed the discussion was timely and would give “a right direction to the conflicting opinions which existed with respect to trade unions, their objects, means of action, and mode of working.”
150. The bourgeois-pacifist Peace Society was founded in London in 1816 by the Quakers with the active support of the Free Traders. Henry Richard, mentioned below, was Secretary of the Society and an organiser of the first international peace congresses in 1848-51. Later, Peace Society members took part in the activities of the League of Peace and Freedom (see Note 163).
151. La Voix de l'Avenir No. 22, June 2, 1867, carried an article entitled “Electoral Law” that dealt with electoral reform in England. “Soon the English workers will be like us, the Swiss and the French, they will have the right to vote,” the article stated. “Then they will see that this right has not changed anything at all in their position. When they are to exercise this right, they, like we, will understand that liberty does not exist on voting day. The state, political parties, the law crush the Liberty of the individual and the liberty of minorities.”
152. La Voix de l'Avenir No. 24, June 16, 1867, published Jung’s letter. dated June 5, which said in part: “The tailors are still on strike, the masters refuse any form of conciliation and have vowed to destroy the society (Operative Tailors’ Protective Association.). In view of this and in response to the tailors’ demand, the Central Council adopted the following resolution: ‘The sections of the different countries are requested to call on all working men for assistance to the London tailors.’ You will appreciate that we cannot allow the death of a society that was one of the first to join the International Association and on more than one occasion provided excellent examples of international solidarity.”
Information about the London tailors’ strike was also placed in Der Vorbote No. 6, June 1867.
153. As Corresponding Secretary for America Fox was to write there about the London tailors’ strike. He did so on June 11 in his letter to Sylvis.
154. Engaged in reading proofs of Volume I of Capital, Marx wa’s unable to take a direct part in the work of the committee to draw up the English text of the General Council’s address in connection with the Lausanne Congress, approved by the Council at its meeting on July 9, 1867. Marx edited the French text of the address drafted by
Lafargue; it greatly differs from the English text. The address in English and French was published in leaflet form:
Address of the General Council of the International Working Men’s Association. To the Members and Affiliated Societies.
Adresse du Conseil general de l'Association internationale. Aux membres et aux societies affiliees et a tous les travailleurs.
The German translation of the French text was included in the leaflet Einladung zum zweiten Kongress der Internationalen Arbeiter Assoziation, am 2-8 September, in Lausanne.
155. Reference is to the German weekly newspaper Hermann. Deutsches Wochenblatt aus London that began publication in London in 1859.
156. La Voix de l'Avenir No. 24, June 16, 1867, announced the affiliation to the International of the Carpenters’ Society, one of the oldest Geneva societies, founded in 1834. It also reported on the formation of two consumers’ co-operatives by the Geneva section and by the Geneva Engravers and Jewellers’ Society. The same issue wrote about the plan to found a co-operative society in Sonvillier that would combine production functions with supplying its members with raw materials and consumer goods; it would also act as a savings-bank and mutual aid society. The plan was put forward by the Sonvillier section of the International.
157. The question of a deputation to the engineers was again raised at the General Council meetings on June 25 and July 9 and 16, 1867.
158. During Tsar Alexander II’s visit to Paris in the first half of June 1867, the Paris workers and Blanquist students, supported by opposition-minded barristers, organised several political demonstrations of sympathy with the Polish people. On June 4 demonstrators in the Latin Quarter (the University district) met the Tsar with shouts of “Long Live Poland!” Because of the big crowds Alexander II had to abandon his visit to the Palais de Justice. That same night the demonstration was repeated, and the police made arrests.
159. These resolutions were published in The Commonwealth No. 297, June 22, 1867.
160. See Note 138.
161. The shortened Minutes of this Council meeting, reproducing the Lausanne Congress programme adopted by the General Council, were published in The Working Man No. 16, July 13, 1867.
162. Information about the London tailors’ strike in April-June 1867 was given by Der Vorbote No. 6, June 1867, and La Tribune du Peuple No. 6, June 30, 1867.
163. The first congress of the bourgeois-democratic League of Peace and Freedom to be held in Geneva was scheduled for September 5, 1867. The formation of this League at a time when war threat ened Western Europe in the latter part of the sixties accorded with the mood of broad sections of the petty bourgeoisie and bourgeois intellectuals. The League’s Organising Committee, which enlisted the support of bourgeois-radical and democratic leaders such as John Stuart Mill , Victor Hugo , the Reclus brothers, and others, realised, however, that the League’s success would depend on support from the European workers and, above all, from their international organization. That is why the Committee invited the sections of the International and its leaders, Marx included, to attend the congress. Simultaneously, it was decided to postpone the opening of the congress to September 9, so as to enable the delegates to the Lausanne Congress of the International to take part in the proceedings of the League’s Congrès as well.
The International ‘s attitude towards the League of Peace and Freedom was discussed both by the General Council and by, the local sections. Marx’s speech at the Council meeting on August 13 clearly revealed the attitude of the International to the League and provided a model for the tactics of the proletarian organisation in the democratic movement.
For the Lausanne Congress decision concerning the attitude towards the League of Peace and Freedom see Note 198.
164. The Vienne section sent only one delegate to the Lausanne Congress-Ailloux.
165. Fox’s letter to Marx. dated July 3, 1867, shows that at this meeting Harriet Law spoke of her intention to found a National Working Women’s Association in London, to be affiliated with the International. “Eccarius referred her to Miss Carroll, the leader of the tailoresses of London and occupant of seat at the Tailors’ Executive,” Fox wrote.
166. The international Ironmoulders’ Union — a big labour union in the United States — was founded in 1859 and finally shaped in 1863 under the leadership of Sylvis who became its President. The Union combined, on a national scale, local ironmoulders’ associations and had its organisations in British Colombia and Canada., it fought for central ised actions on the part of local associations, led the strike movement, and did much to strengthen trade unions on a national scale.
167. The official report of the Geneva Congress of the International was published in The International Courier Nos. 7-15, February 20, March 13, 20, 27, and April 3, 10, 17; in Le Courrier International Nos. 8-16, March 9, 16, 23, 30, and April 6, 13, 20, 1867; and in The Working Man, March-August 1867. The same papers announced that preparations were under way to publish the Minutes in pamphlet form. But they were not published as a pamphlet for lack of money.
168. Fox’s memorial on cheaper international postal rates, addressed to the British Postmaster-General, the Duke of Montrose, was published in The Working Man No. 20, August 10, 1867, and signed by the General Council officers Odger, Eccarius, Carter, Jung, Dupont, Zabicki, Fox, and Besson. In view of Marx being absent, Lessner signed the document as the Corresponding Secretary pro. tem. for Germany. Referring to the Geneva Congress decision instructing the General Council to raise the question before different governments. Fox explained that the demand for cheaper postal rates was necessitated by the growth of international ties and frequent emigration of workers from one country to another in search of work.
169. Reference is to the excesses committed in the autumn of 1866 in Sheffield by some trade unionists against strike-breakers. A special government commission was set up to investigate the matter; the commission worked for several months in 1867, and the results of its investigations were widely used by the bourgeois press to discredit the trade unions and the labour movement in general.
In his letter to Jung, dated July 6, 1867, Charles Perron, the Secretary of the Geneva section, enclosed three cuttings from the Swiss bourgeois papers and requested him to send a reply in the form of an article that could be published in a newspaper.
170. Reference is to the article printed in La Voix de l'Avenir No. 28, July 14, 1867.
171. The Executive of the Lyons branch of the International (A. Richard, Blanc, Schettel, Palix, and others) published, in the spring of 1867, a draft of the Rules of the Industrial and Commercial Society of the Lyons Workers, Members of the International Société industrielle et commerciale des travailleurs lyonnais adherents à l'Internationale Projet de Statuts. The society was to embrace consumers’ and producers’ co-operatives and a loanbank in a single system. The project did not materialise. The existence of an organisation registered as a joint-stock commercial society made it possible for the branch to hold periodic meetings unhindered.
172. Chassin was the delegate to the Lausanne Congress from the Villefranche section.
173. The report of this meeting, published in The Bee-Hive No. 301, July 20, 1867, contains the following communication from France not recorded in the Minute Book:
“An extensive lock-out in the stuff-printing trade was also reported. The firm of Yautmann, at Puteaux, discharged four workmen for being members of a mutual credit society. When their fellow-labourers in the factory became aware of the reason of the discharge, they, with one accord, demanded the return of the discharged. Upon this being refused they struck work, and the proprietors of the stuff-printing establishments of Paris, Puteaux, Saint-Denis, Sevres, Saint-Germain, and Le Peiq — with the exception of the house of Malsis and Choquel — have locked their work-people out until Yautmann’s work-people resume work minus the four.”
The report of this General Council meeting, published in The Commonwealth No. 228, July 20, 1867, apparently written by Eccarius, contains the following communication from Germany which is not recorded in the Minute Book:
“A letter from the tailors of Berlin was read, stating that the cigar-makers had raised a levy, and some cabinet-makers had joined to get money for the London tailors. The proceeds of a concert, together with the subscriptions, amount in all to £22, for which a cheque was received. The following extract from the appeals published in the Berlin papers was read:
‘The Council of the International Working Men’s Association has appealed to the Berlin tailors for the pecuniary aid. The case of the London tailors is not a matter of charity; it is a matter of duty. They have conscientiously entered upon a giant struggle against capital, well knowing that if they are defeated theirs will be a sorry lot for years to come, and it will re-act upon the whole labouring population, at least in England, since it is not simply a contest between operative and master tailors, but a struggle of labour against the domination of capital. May the working men of Berlin show that they understand the importance of the solidarity of the working men as well as their English compeers, who prove it by their continuous contributions. The working men’s interests are everywhere the same.”
174. The report of the annual meeting of the London Trades Council held on July 24, 1867 was published in The Bee-Hive No. 302, July 27, 1867. Marx, apparently, was unable to attend this meeting because on July 25 he was still working on the Preface to Volume I of Capital which he finished the same day and sent to the Hamburg publisher.
175. The information about the German Communist Club in New York was given in Friedrich A. Sorge’s letter to Marx, July 10, 1867. The club was founded in 1857 by German revolutionary emigrants; a considerable role in it was played by a group of former members of the Communist League and Marx’s associates (Weydemeyer and others). Sorge informed Marx of the successes of the International in the U.S.A. and wrote that so far propaganda was being conducted only among the German worker emigrants but soon it would be carried on among the native population, for which Sorge asked Marx to send him documents in English.
176. “Reports by her Majesty’s Secretaries of Embassy and Legation, on the Manufactures, Commerce, etc., of the Countries in Which They Reside.” London, 1867, No. 5, pp. 594-95.
The mistakes in figures made in the source itself are left intact while the errors in the newspaper are corrected in accordance with the source.
177. On July 9, the general meeting of the Geneva section decided to subscribe to the programme of the League of Peace and Freedom (see Note 163) and expressed full confidence in its organisers. Several members of the Geneva section, including Becker and Dupleix, joined the League’s Organising Committee.
178. The address of the bourgeois radicals’ meeting, held on July 14 in Fleurier, Switzerland, was published in La Voix de l'Avenir No. 29, July 21, 1967.
179. Reference is to the delegate meeting of workers in St. Imier on July 21, 1867 held on the initiative of members of the International. The meeting was to discuss the following questions concerning the organisation of payment to the workers in the watchmaking industry which was of a domestic character: 1) Payment in cash, without deductions; 2) Payment in instalments and competition between the contractors without capital, and the big firms; 3) Co-operation. The announcement about this meeting was given in La Voix de l'Avenir No. 29, July 21, 1867.
180. Reference is to the appeal of the Executive Committee of the National Labour Union to the American workers issued in connection with a Labour Congress to be held in Chicago on August 19, 1867.
181. Marx proposed this in view of the publication, in Le Courrier Français No. 25, July 20, 1867, of the Paris section appeal to all the working men’s societies in connection with the Lausanne Congress. The appeal included the Congress agenda as proposed by the Paris section in February 1867 (see Note 109). Imbued with Proudhonist ideas, this agenda led the Congress away from discussing the urgent questions of labour organisation.
182. The General Council’s balance-sheet for the financial year ending August 31, 1867 was published in The Bee-Hive No. 310, September 21, 1867.
183. See Note 167.
184. Eintracht was a branch of the German Workers’ Educational Association in London (see Note 117).
185. The list of delegates to the Lausanne Congress of 1867 does not include a delegate from the Polish section.
186. Caen and Conde-sur-Noireau sent Charles Longuet as their delegate to the Lausanne Congress.
187. The Neuville-sur-Saône section was represented at the Lausanne Congress by Rubaud, a print-shop worker. The report of this meeting, published in The Bee-Hive No. 303, August 3, 1867, says that “the section of Neuville-sur-Saône is spreading amongst the agricultural labourers of the neighbourhood, who the correspondent remarks, are greatly in want of instruction, and require encouragement to unite for their common interests.”
188. At an annual general delegate meeting of various trade unions convened by the London Trades Council and held on July 24, 1867, a conflict arose between the Executive Committee of the Amalgamated Society of Carpenters and Joiners and representatives of a local branch of that society. The branch representatives, referring to the second article in the rules of the Council, demanded that they should be given the right to directly elect delegates to general meetings instead of such delegates being merely appointed by the Executive Committee from among a few persons close to the society’s leadership. This demand, met with indignation from the reformist leaders of the Council, found supPort among local organisations. It was explained by a worker named Davison in a letter published in The Bee-Hive No. 302, July 27, 1867.
189. The Coventry ribbon-weavers’ delegate to the Lausanne. Congress of 1867 was Daniel Swan.
190. The report of this meeting, published in The Bee-Hive No. 304, August 10, 1867, includes the text of the resolution sent to the General Council by the Secretary of the Amalgamated Society of Carpenters and Joiners:
“That the Executive Council, sincerely appreciating the efforts of the Council of the International Association to bring together the workmen of every nationality into one bond of fraternity, and being desirous of assisting, as far as circumstances will at present permit, in such laudable endeavours, beg to assure the Council of that Association of our hearty sympathy, and our desire to subscribe, on behalf of our society, the sum of £ 2 per annum towards the funds of the International Association.”
191. The Vienne section’s delegate to the Lausanne Congress of 1867 was Ailloux, a tailor.
192. The international co-operative congress to be held in Paris on August 16-18, 1867 was banned by the French Government. Reporting on this, Der Vorbote, in issue No. 8, August 1867, invited congress delegates to attend the International’s Congress in Lausanne.
193. Reference is to the National Labour Union congress to be held in Chicago in August 1867. The Union was founded in the U.S.A., at a congress in Baltimore, in August 1866. Sylvis, a prominent leader in the American labour movement, took an active part in founding it. In October 1866 the Labour Union established contacts with the International Working Men’s Association. At the Chicago Congress of the Union Trevellick was elected delegate to the next International’s congress but he was unable to attend.
The Workingman’s Advocate was published weekly in Chicago between the summer of 1864 and October 1877. Sylvis, Cameron, and other leaders of the American labour movement were on its editorial board. The newspaper regularly published reports about the activities of the International and its chief documents.
194. The list of delegates to the Lausanne Congress does not include the representative of the London Basket-Makers’ Society.
195. Lessner was the delegate to the Lausanne Congress from the German Workers’ Educational Association in London (Deutscher Arbeiter-Bildungs-Verein).
196. See Note 163.
197. The brief record of the Minutes does not fully express the views of the founders of Marxism on the role of regular standing armies in the nineteenth century. Their views are expounded in Engels’s work “The War Question in Prussia and the German Workers’ Party” and in a series of his articles “Notes on War.”
198. The question of the attitude towards the Congress of the League of Peace and Freedom was discussed by the Lausanne Congress at its meeting on September 4, 1867. The General Council’s stand on this question, as expounded by Eccarius, found no support. Nor did the Congress adopt the proposal of the commission, headed by Swiss journalist Hafner, that they should fully and unconditionally support the League’s Congress and take part in all its measures. After a lengthy debate the Congress adopted the following amendment moved by Tolain and De Paepe:
“Considering that the prime and principal cause of war is pauperism and lack of economic balance, that to eliminate wars it is not sufficient to disband standing armies, but it is also necessary to change the organisation of society to bring about a more just distribution of products, this Congress adheres to the League Congress provided the latter accept the above principles.”
The following General Council members attended the League Congress, held in Geneva, in an individual capacity: Dupont, Eccarius, Odger, Cremer, Longuet, and Walton; in addition, Becker, Tolain, Fribourg, Vasseur, Murat, Coullery, Guillaume, and other members of the French and Swiss sections were present. The stand taken by the proletarian nucleus of the General Council on the working-class attitude towards wars was expressed by Dupont, who said:
“Citizens, the worker is unquestionably the most ardent partisan of perpetual peace. He supplies the field of battle with cannon-fodder, and it is he who must feed the war budget with his labour and sleepless nights. Thus, from this point of view he wants peace. But peace is not a principle, it can only be a re ult. Do you think, Citizens, you can secure it by the means you roposed to us here yesterday?... Of course not. To establish perpetual peace, it is necessary to do away with laws that oppress labour, with all privileges, and to turn all citizens into a single
class of working people; in a word, to accept the social revolution with all its consequences.”
Dupont’s speech was included in the report of the Geneva Congress of the League published in the Swiss newspaper Diogene, November-December 1867.
199. This refers to the election of delegates to the Lausanne Congress. Harriet Law is not mentioned in the Congress list.
200. In the spring of 1865, a Reform League was founded in London on the initiative and with the active participation of the International’s General Council. It was to be a political centre for guiding the mass reform movement of the British workers. The League’s leading bodies — the Council and the Executive Committee — included six General Council members: Cremer, Odger, Howell, Eccarius, Leno, and Nieass. The reform movement programme and tactics as regards bourgeois parties were elaborated under the direct influence of Marx who struggled for a British labour policy independent of the governing parties. In contrast to the bourgeoisie’s demand for household suffrage, the Reform League, on Marx’s insistence, put forward the demand for universal manhood suffrage throughout the country. This Chartist slogan restored to life by the International found wide response among the British workers and secured for the League the support of the trade unions. The League had its branches in all the big industrial towns of England. However, the League failed to carry out the line worked out by the General Council owing to the waverings of the bourgeois radicals among the League’s leaders, who became afraid of the mass movement, and to the conciliatory policy pursued by the opportunist trade-union leaders. The British bourgeoisie managed to split the movement, and — in the summer of 1867 a curtailed reform was carried out which granted suffrage only to the petty bourgeoisie and to top sections of the working class, leaving the bulk of the population disfranchised as before.
201. In the summer of 1867, a Workers’ Union was formed at Berne which declared itself to be a branch of the International. The Union sent its delegate, Alleman, a printer, to the Lausanne Congress.
202. The Working Men’s Union of New York — association of New York, trade unions — was founded in 1863 and aimed at uniting New York workers in their struggle against the employers, supporting the strikers, and helping to settle conflicts between the workers and employers.
203. The Postmaster-General’s letter to the International Working Men’s Association, dated August 24, 1867, was published in full in The Bee-Hive No. 307, August 31, 1867. The letter was signed by F. J. Scudamore.
204. The manuscript of Fox’s annual report of his activities as Corresponding Secretary for America is inserted in the Minute Book after the General Council Minutes of August 29, 1867.
205. The balance-sheet up to August 31, 1867, audited by Hales and Maurice, was submitted for the approval by the Lausanne Congress.
206. La Liberté — bourgeois-democratic weekly close to the Proudhonists, published in Brussels from 1865 to 1873; from 1867 onwards it regularly printed reports about the International’s activities.
207. The report of the General Council meeting of August 20, published in The Bee-Hive No. 306, August 24, 1867, omitted part of the information about the American labour movement. Fox, who was a contributor to The Bee-Hive and the author of that report, put his information about the Chicago Congress of the National Labour Union, which he made to the Council, in a leading article in the same issue. In his comments on this article he said nothing about the International Working Men’s Association, its relations with the National Union, and the forthcoming Lausanne Congress, at which a delegate from America was also to be present.
208. The Bee-Hive Nos. 309 and 310, September 14 and 21, 1867, published the abridged English text of the General Council’s report to the Lausanne Congress and the balance-sheet up to August 31, 1867.
209. In the report of this meeting, published in The Bee-Hive No. 311, September 28, 1867, Eccarius’s information was given as follows: “Citizen Eccarius gave an account of the proceedings of the late Congress, stating some particulars not included in the reports that have appeared in The Bee-Hive. There had been open-air meetings every other night, during the Congress week, at which the various delegates had addressed the outside public. Mr. Hugentobbler, of Neuchatel, had presented twenty copies of his work, entitled ‘The Abolition of Pauperism’, which had been distributed amongst the delegates of the various sections. Mr. Hugentobbler proposes the abolition of private property in land as a remedy against pauperism.”
210. In accordance with the decision adopted, on Marx’s proposal, by the General Council on November 22, 1864, the British working men’s societies joining the International could themselves determine the amount of their contributions depending on their means. The printed form of application adopted in June 1865 emphasised that “no contributions are demanded from societies joining”; it was left to their discretion “to contribute or not, or as they may from time to time deem the efforts of the Association worthy of support.” This application (varnished and mounted on canvas and roller) cost 5s. regarded as an entrance fee.
211. Eccarius’s reports of the Lausanne Congress, published in The Times on September 6-11, 1867, contained several ironical remarks on the verbosity of the French Proudhonist delegates and the confusion of their views. As Engels wrote to Marx on September 11, Eccarius did. not take into account the fact that “his humour can be used by the bourgeoisie who edit him to ridicule the whole cause and not only a few Frenchmen.” In his reply to Engels, dated September 12, Marx agreed that Eccarius “lacks diplomatic talent. He writes to The Times as if he were writing for the Neue Rheinische Zeitungs-Revue.”
Eccarius’s articles in The Times met. with objection on the part of some Council, members. In this connection, Marx wrote to Engels on October 4: “Fox, who after Eccarius’s return did not miss a single opportunity to exhibit his great hatred for Eccarius, gave notice that at the next meeting (Tuesday) he would speak about Eccarius’s articles in The Times so that the Council could be their censor. After this, to Fox’s great surprise, I also gave notice that next Tuesday I would interpellate Fox regarding a certain secret letter in which he called on Becker to do all in his power to remove the seat of the Central Council from London.”
The letter mentioned by Marx was sent by Fox to Becker in Geneva on the eve of the Lausanne Congress, on August 29, 1867, and bore the words “Private and confidential.” Fox wrote:
“Dear chief, please try to change the General Council’s seat to Geneva,. at least for next year. Leave us free to carry on propaganda in London and other big centres of the country. The Council has made a big mistake in taking Odger’s side in his conflict with Potter and The Bee-Hive. Only five weeks ago the Council changed course and made peace with The Bee-Hive and Potter, who dominates the most powerful organisation of London’s trade unions. Now that this stupid mistake is rectified, our prospects have improved. We all agree that the Congress must leave in London a correspondent for America. In this respect our hopes are also encouraging. But above all change the General Council’s seat. We should have quite enough to do as a British section. Faithfully yours, Peter Fox.”
212. As is evident from Marx’s letter to Engels, dated October 4, 1867, the proposal to abolish the office of the General Council’s President was moved on Marx’s initiative. In its special resolution the Basle Congress of the International held in 1869 proposed that all local sections should abolish the post of president in their sections.
213. Besson remained the nominal Secretary for Belgium until the end of 1868 but did not fulfil his functions. In his letter to De Paepe in Brussels, Dupont wrote on May 12, 1868: “Besson often attends the meetings of the French branch but never the General Council meetings. He has only come four times in two years. That is why I often write in his place and why the General Council practically always charges me with writing to you.”
214. Reference is to an editorial in The Times, September 10, 1867, which examined the results of the Congress of the National Labour Union held in Chicago.
215. In the report of this meeting, published in The Bee-Hive No. 311, September 28, 1867, the concluding part of Hinton’s speech is given as follows: “Mr. Hinton (citizen of America) stated that The Times had misrepresented the intentions of the National Labour Congress of America respecting immigration from Europe. There were no less than 11,000,000 of the population of the United States who were of European birth, and they at all events could have no desire to prevent others coming. Nor were the native Americans against immigration from Europe. There was room for all who were willing to work for their living. What they objected to was that European working men should come at the bidding of American capitalists to be used against the resident workmen of America. This they were determined to put a stop to if possible. A close union, not only between the trades societies, but of the leading social and political spirits of the two countries, was necessary, and he would do all in his power on his return to bring about such a union.”
The report of this meeting, published in The Bee-Hive No. 312, October 5, 1867, cites a letter from the Tailors’ Society of Cologne founded on the initiative of the Cologne section of the International. The letter says: “The preliminary programme which we have issued is as follows: 1. The establishment of sick benefit clubs, and their consolidation into a general assurance union. 2. A relief fund for members out of work and travelling. 3. The establishment of offices affording information respecting the demand for labour. We consider these three points as a, means to rally the tailors to unite, and to give the Association to be formed a legal status within the Prussian dominion. Our ultimate aim is the foundation of productive associations.” The letter was addressed to Eccarius.
216. See Notes 211 and 221.
217. See Note 208.
218. Reference is to the pamphlet published in August 1866 under the title Address and Provisional Rules of the Working Men’s International Association. Established September 28, 1864, at a public meeting held at St. Martin’s Hall, Long Acre, London.
219. The text of the propositions, made by Isard and Drury at a meeting of the National Labour Union of the United States, was included in the report on the present Council meeting published in The Bee-Hive No. 313, October 12, 1867. Drawn up in a pettybourgeois, reformist spirit, the propositions dealt with the establishment of a world mutual credit society, the organisation of co-operatives and school reforms, and ended With the following slogan: “Abolition of wages, labour, extinction of pauperism, a just distribution of wealth; in a word, liberty, morality and justice.”
220. Wilhelm Liebknecht was elected to the North-German Reichstag by one of the Saxon electoral districts. The results of the elections became known on September 20, 1867.
221. Informing Engels on the further course of the trouble between Fox and Eccarius (see Note 211), Marx wrote on October 9, 1867: “So, yesterday Fox was to behead Eccarius. He took over an hour to pronounce his indictment. He very insidiously compared the worst places and used all the craft of a barrister from the Old Bailey, attacking me as well. In opposing him I gave him such rough time that in his reply he lost all control of himself. Everybody took part in the discussion. Result: my motion (rather amendment) to ‘go over to the order of the day’ was carried by an overwhelming majority. However, during the debate Eccarius got a good dressing down.”
222. In its letter of October 10, 1867 the Lausanne section informed the General Council that it owed 3,000 francs which it had spent in the winter of 1865-66 trying to organise a co-operative work shop to provide 80 people with work.
223. Liebknecht’s speech in the North-German Reichstag, delivered on October 17, 1867, was included in the report of this Council meeting published in The Bee-Hive No. 315, October 26, 1867. Marx attached great importance to Liebknecht’s speech and instructed Lafargue to prepare the French text of this speech and send it to Vermorel for publication in Le Courrier Français.
224. In accordance with the General Council’s resolution of January 24, 1865, only a member of the International Association could be elected to the General Council. This applied also to those Council members who were representatives of workers’ organisations that joined the International in their corporate capacity.
225. Industrial Partnership Record-monthly on issues concerning the co-operative movement, published by Greening in London from 1867 to 1868. Between March 1868 and August 1869 it came out under the title Social-Economist, George Holyoake participating in it.
226. The Reform League’s (see Note 200) stand on the Irish question in general and on the Fenians in particular (see Note 229) is presented here in a false light. On October 23, 1867 the Council of the Reform League discussed the letter of the bourgeois radical Beales, the League’s President, in which he sharply condemned the Fenian movement. Odger and Lucraft, who were present at this meeting, objected to this letter being published and expressed sympathy for the Irish liberation movement and the Fenians’ revolutionary methods of struggle. This action by two prominent trade-union leaders, which could have acquired great importance in determining the British proletariat’s position in regard to the national-colonial question, resulted from the work Marx and his followers had carried on in the General Council. On November 2, 1867 Marx wrote to Engels: “You will have seen what a row ‘our people’ kicked up in the Reform League. I have sought in every way to provoke this manifestation of the English workers in support of Fenianism.”
The discussion in the Reform League, the. report of which was published in The Bee-Hive No. 315, October 26, 1867, caused alarm among the League’s bou rgeois-radical leaders. Under their pressure Odger and Lucraft, at the next meeting of the League’s Council, took back their words in favour of the Fenians and tried to assure those present at the meeting that they were misunderstood. The chauvinist elements on the editorial board of The Bee-Hive did all they could to publish the detailed report of this meeting in the next issue of the paper, No. 316, November 2, 1867.
227. As is known from Jung’s letter to Marx written on November 16, 1867. Fox accused Jung of intending to remove the British members from the Council and alluded to the incident with Carter after the Geneva Congress. Marx, apparently, addressed a letter to Fox persuading him to continue his work in the Council and stating, in particular, the need for dealing actively with the Irish question in the nearest future. Fox’s reply to Marx dated November 23, 1867 has survived. Fox wrote: “I see the importance of attending on the Irish question and making a speech. I will attend, as you say, as a simple member of the Association. As to retracting my resignation — that is not likely. I agree that I am responsible to the yearly Congress and I will not fail to lay my conduct before them...
“My grievance is not with one man, but with the Council and its Chairman for the licence given to that man.”
228. The Geneva workers’ address to the Italian people, dated October 30 and approved by a mass meetin g specially called for the purpose on November 3, was published in Der Vorbote No. 11, November 1867. The same number of the journal reproduced the text of a poster, issued by the Geneva section on October 30, calling upon the Italians to take part in a meeting and demonstration on November 3.
229. In the late fifties of the nineteenth century a secret Fenian organisation, known as the Irish Revolutionary (or Republican) Brotherhood, was founded among the Irish immigrants in America and later extended to Ireland. The Fenians who objectively voiced the interests of the Irish peasants came mainly from the urban petty bourgeoisie and intellectuals. Because of their conspiratorial tactics and their sectarian and bourgeois-nationalistic outlook the Fenians were out of touch with the mass of the Irish people and did not link up their activities with the general democratic movement that was developing in England, in particular with the reform movement. Marx and Engels more than once pointed to the weakness of the Fenian movement; still they highly appreciated its revolutionary character and sought to guide it along the path of mass struggle and joint action with the English working class. In February-March 1867, the armed uprising. for which the Fenians had long prepared, suffered defeat; isolated actions in individual counties were suppressed, and many leaders were arrested and put on trial. On September 18, in Manchester, an armed attack on a police van was organised to release the two Fenian leaders Colonel Kelley and Captain Deasy. Their escape was a success but during the clash a police officer was killed. Five people seized at the place of the incident and accused of murder were sentenced to death. This death sentence aroused a wave of protest in Ireland and England. General Council members, including Dupont, the Corresponding Secretary for France, joined the protest movement. On October 14, 1867 Dupont published an article on the Fenian movement in the Paris newspaper Le Courrier Français. However, the movement in defence of the Fenians got no effective backing from British General Council members because of their bourgeois-chauvinist views. The stand taken by Odger and Lucraft in the Council of the Reform League attested to this (see Note 226).
In order to elaborate common tactics for the workers on the national question and to spread the ideas of proletarian internationalism among the British workers, Marx insisted on holding a discussion on the Irish question in the General Council jointly with Irish and British press officials.
The report of this General Council meeting, published in The Bee-Hive No. 318, November 16, 1867, states: “The home affairs that came under the notice of the Council were simply routine business with the exception of one proposition, which was unanimously carried. The proposition in question is a discussion on ‘Fenianism’, next Tuesday evening, at the ordinary meeting place.
Members of the Council, as well as members of the Association, are invited to attend, and bring friends who Are not indifferent to public affairs with them.” The discussion took place on November 19 and 26, 1867.
230. Reference is to the following publication of the ‘Minutes of the Lausanne Congress: “Proces verbaux du Congrès de l'Association internationale des travailleurs reuni A Lausanne du 2 au 8 Septembre 1867.” La Chaux-de-Fonds, impr. Voix de l'Avenir, 1867.
231. This refers to the mass meetings held in Hyde Park on June 27, July 2, and July 23-25, 1866, at the time of the most active struggle for electoral reform in England.
232. In 1866 a campaign of protest developed in England against the severe treatment of Irish political prisoners, whom the government regarded as common criminals. The General Council took an active part in this campaign (see The General Council. 1864-1866, pp. 151, 166-69, 211-12, 327-34).
In speaking of the “would-be liberators” Dupont alluded to the British Liberals, and above all to Gladstone, who in his time exposed in the press the Government of Ferdinand II, of Naples, which maltreated political prisoners, participants in the Italian national liberation movement.
233. The arrest by Negus Theodore II of the British consul Cameron and a group of Europeans who intrigued against the Negus led to the war between Britain and Abyssinia (1867-68). In April 1867 the British Government began preparations for a military expedition to Abyssinia, and on November 19, 1867 Queen Victoria officially declared war.
234. The text of this memorial drawn up by Marx in English was not reproduced in the English press. It was recorded in the General Council’s Minute Book. There also survived a copy of it made by Marx’s wife in the form of an article to be published in the press. The French translation of this article appeared in Le Courrier Français on November 24, 1867.
235. The text of the resolution moved by Fox can also be found in his letter to Marx written on November 23, 1867. In a letter to Engels, dated November 30, 1867, Marx described the resolution as “absurd and meaningless.”
236. A detailed report of this meeting can be found in Marx’s letter to Engels, dated November 30, 1867:
“... If you read the papers you will have seen that 1) the Memorial of the International Council for the Fenians was sent to Hardy, and that 2) the debate on Fenianism was public (last Tuesday a week) and reported in The Times Reporters of the Dublin Irishman and Nation were among those present. I came very late (I ran a temperature for about a fortnight and the fever passed only two days ago) and really did not intend to speak, firstly because of my troublesome physical condition, and secondly because of the ticklish situation. However, Weston, who was in the chair, tried to force me to, so I moved to adjourn, which obligated me to speak last Tuesday. As a matter of fact what I had prepared for Tuesday last was not a speech but the points of a speech. But the Irish reporters failed to come, and we waited until 9 o'clock whereas the premises were put at our disposal only up to half past ten. On my proposal, Fox had prepared a long speech (because of the quarrel in the Council he had not made an appearance for a fortnight; besides he had sent in his resignation as member of the Council, containing gross attacks on Jung). After the opening of the sitting I therefore stated I would yield the floor to Fox on account of the belated hour. Actually — because of the Manchester executions that had taken place in the meantime — our subject, Fenianism, was liable to inflame the passions to such heat that I (but not the abstract Fox) would have been forced to hurl revolutionary thunderbolts instead of soberly analysing the state of affairs and the movement as I had intended. The Irish reporters therefore, by staying away and delaying the opening of the meeting, did signal service for me. I don’t like to mix with a crowd like Roberts, Stephens, and the rest. Fox’s speech was good, for one thing because it was delivered by an Englishman and for another because it concerned only the political and international aspects. For that very reason he just skimmed along the surface of things!’
Notes for Marx’s undelivered speech on Ireland which he had prepared for this Council meeting are extant .
237. The Minutes of the General Council meeting of December 3 are not recorded in the Minute Book while The Bee-Hive Newspaper No. 321, December 7, 1867, published the following report of it:
“On account of a meeting convened by the French democrats, resident in London, to protest against the French occupation of Rome, the Council of the International Working Men’s Association had but a short meeting to transact some administrative business. Letters were handed to the General Secretary announcing the formation of a new section of the Association at Digne (Basses-Alpes) in Franco, and a cordial vote of thanks, passed by the Marseilles section, to the Council for the memorial addressed to the British Government on behalf of the (alas now executed) Fenians, at Manchester. The corresponding secretary states that the Marseilles section bids fair to assume gigantic proportions. At Leipzig arrangements have been made to publish a weekly working men’s paper, under the auspices of the Association. A preliminary number, containing prospectus, platform, etc., will be issued in the course of the present month; the regular weekly publication is to commence in the first week of the ensuing year.”
238. Reference is to the publication in English in pamphlet form of the Rules approved by the Geneva Congress of 1866 . The pamphlet appeared in London at the end of 1867 under the title Rules of the International Working Men’s Association.
239. The report of this meeting in The Bee-Hive No. 325, January 4, 1868, adds the following to Lawrence’s speech: “He observed that The Times had found fault with the amount set down in the balance-sheet as expenditure of the Executive, but, as far as he was aware, no strike had ever been carried on cheaper. The expenses of the committee, delegations, and deputations hardly amounted to five per cent of the whole expenditure, and this included the deductions for post-office orders, loss on stamps converted into cash, and changing foreign money. According to the report of the Social Science Association, the expense of the general committee of the Preston cotton spinners’ strike had been 15 per cent!”
240. Pursuing demagogical ends, the Government of Napoleon III was at first fairly tolerant to the International’s activities in France though it did not give its sanction to the formation of sections of the International in the country. But as time went on and the revolutionary proletarian character of the first working-class international organisation became manifest, the position of the French sections was changing. The police began to keep an eye on them; the government’s first hostile act was the confiscation of the Geneva Congress documents at the French frontier.
At the close of 1867 the prosecutor gave orders to make searches at the houses of the Paris Committee members, counting on finding proofs that the International was a secret society. Such proofs were not found. however, and the Paris Committee members were charged with forming a society without the sanction of the authorities. The case was heard in the Paris Criminal Court on March 6 and 20, 1868. While under examination, the fifteen members of the Committee (Chemale, Tolain, Heligon, Camelinat, Murat, Perrachon, Fournoise, Gauthier, Dauthier, Bellamy, Gerardin, Bastion, Guyard, Delahaye, Delorme) declared the existing Committee to be dissolved and appointed new elections. On March 8, 1868, a second Paris Committee was formed consisting of Bourdon, Varlin, Malon, Combault, Mollin, Landrin, Humbert, Granjon, and Charboneau. This gave rise to the instigation of a new case, the so-called “Second Committee” case, which was heard on May 22, 1868. At these two trials and during the examination of the cases in the Court of Appeal, the accused, almost all of whom refused counsel, made speeches in defence of the Committee in which they brilliantly expounded the ideas of the International. Of particular interest is Varlin’s speech describing the International’s history from 1864 to 1868. The court declared the Paris section to be dissolved and fined the members of the first Paris Committee. The members of the second Committee came off rather worse: the accused were condemned to three months’ imprisonment and fined.
241. As is seen from Eccarius’s letter to Marx, dated January 12, 1868, on January 8 the General Council could not meet in the Cleveland Hall because they could not afford to pay the rent for the premises. It was decided temporarily to use Maurice’s office in Castle Street where the Council held its meetings in the summer of 1867.
242. Following discussion of these questions by the affiliated societies, they were to be included in the agenda of the next congress of the International which was to be held in Brussels in 1868. The question of the public ownership of land, mines and means of communication directed the International’s sections to a widespread discussion of the socialist principles of the programme.
243. A meeting to celebrate the anniversary of the February 1848 Revolution in France was convened by the French branch in London and held in the Cleveland Hall on February 24, 1868 under the chairmanship of Jung. It was attended by more than 500 people, mainly representatives of the working-class and pettybourgeois revolutionary emigrés from France and other countries. Greetings from Victor Hugo and Mazzini were announced. Then Felix Pyat made a speech. The report of this meeting appeared in The Bee-Hive No. 333, February 29, 1868.
244. The Bye-Laws of the British sections, published together with the Rules of the International approved by the Geneva Congress of 1866, were signed by Robert Shaw as chairman and John George Eccarius as honorary general secretary. The 1864 and 1866 London editions of the Inaugural Address and Provisional Rules gave the full list of General Council members.
245. The circular on collecting statistics for the General Council’s report and the appeal to the members of the International concerning preparations for the Brussels Congress, both approved by this meeting, were published in The Bee-Hive No. 331, February 15; La Tribune du People No. 3, March 29; La Voix de l'Avenir No. 12, March 22; Der Vorbote No. 3, March; Democratisches Wochenblatt No. 9, February 29, 1868.
246. Jung read Dupleix’s letter to him dated February 4, 1868.
247. This refers to the publication of the Lausanne Congress Minutes (see Note 230) stitched together with the reports submitted to the Congress: Rapports lus au Congrès ouvrier reuni du 2 au 8 septembre 1867 a Lausanne La Chaux-de-Fonds, impr. Voix de I'Avenir, 1867, 132 p. (Prix-80 centimes.) From the announcement in La Voix de l'Avenir No. 29, July 19, 1868, it appears that this pamphlet was sold at 1 franc 50 centimes.
248. The entry made in the Minute Book is not exact. In the report of this meeting published in The Bee-Hive No. 331, February 15, 1868, this information from Paris is given as follows:
“The inquiry into the conduct of the members of the Paris Committee is still going on. M. Gonet, the juge d'instruction, does not know what to make of it. He is morally certain that the accused are no friends of the present regime, nor much in favour of the existing state of things generally, but the domiciliary visits, made at six o'clock one morning between Christmas and New Year’s day, have, instead of Fenian plots and plans, only yielded a few French copies of an address that has freely circulated, in different languages, for more than three years throughout the civilised world; and some letters from London containing strong expressions of opinions on various subjects. M. Gonet has come to the conclusion that there must be something behind the screen that the vigilance of the imperial spies cannot lay hold of. He maintains that the International Working Men’s Association in France is only a device to deceive the authorities, that n ames on the London Council are men of straw, the English am and that it is only the French revolutionists in London with whom the Paris sympathisers are in correspondence, and from whom they receive the secret instructions which the police cannot get at. In default of incriminating documents and indictable offences the men expect to be punished for their sentiments, and for what the imperial authorities may consider them capable of, if they had a chance of doing it.”
249. See Note 245.
250. In the report of this meeting published in The Bee-Hive No. 331, February 15, the last two paragraphs are replaced by the following text: Secretary reported that all the circular letters had been sent cut, and that the Secretary of the London CigarMakers’ Association had already replied to the questions.”
251. The Bee-Hive No. 331, February 15, 1868, presents Lawrence’s information as follows: “He said the wealthy classes had banks to carry on own business, which enabled business men to use the money of those who did not carry on any business themselves. To make co-operative production successful the working classes must have banks of their own. At the very lowest estimate, the working class had £15,000,000 sterling in the banks, which a: present was used by the wealthy for a nominal interest, and was in reality used against the working class.”
252. Rochdale Society of Equitable Pioneers — one of the oldest cooperative societies in England founded early in 1844 under the direct influence c.’ Robert Owen.
253. The quarterly meeting of the Operative Tailors’ Protective Association, held on February 25, 1868 in Cleveland Hall, Fitzroy Street, approved the new rules drawn up by the Executive; according to these rules the association was reorganised on the pattern of the Amalgamated Engineers’ Society. the Amalgamated Society of Carpenters and Joiners, and similar big trade unions.
254. This refers to the questions on labour statistics.
255. The letter of Tacker, the Secretary of the Amalgamated Tailors’ Society of the U.S.A. and Canada, was read by Lawrence at a general meeting of the Operative Tailors’ Protective Association held on February 25, 1868 (see Note 253).
256. The report of this meeting in The Bee-Hive No. 334, March 7, 1868, says that the Lynn branch of the International Working Men’s Association held a meeting at the Albion Hotel, at which the following resolutions were adopted: “1st. ‘That the credit system established on the co-operative principle, facilitated by the use of paper-money, would be beneficial to the working classes.’. 2nd. ‘Under the present system machinery is very detrimental to the labouring classes.’ 3rd. ‘This meeting is of opinion that it is highly expedient to draw up a programme for the technical and a comprehensive secular education of the children of the working classes.’ 4th. ‘This meeting is of opinion that there could be no such thing as private property in land originally, and that the sooner it would be converted again into public property the better it would be for the nation at large.’ 5th. ‘This meeting seeing that the intelligent portion of the working classes view strikes as evils, although under certain circumstances necessary, would be most happy to embrace any means which might be introduced to prevent the same.’
257. La Voix de l'Avenir No. 9, March 1, 1868, carried F. Paillard’s article “Position des ouvriers en batiment A Geneve,” citing figures on the living conditions of the building workers.
258. All these facts on the International’s activities in Belgium are to be found in De Paepe’s letter from Brussels, dated February 6 and published in La Voix de l'Avenir No. 9, March 1, 1868.
259. The Belgian workers’ address to the British workers concerning the Fenians was adopted by the Belgian sections on March 15, 1868 and published in La Tribune du Peuple No. 6, June 14, 1868. The address showed their warm sympathy with the Irish national liberation movement Alongside the views which bear the strong influence of Proudhon’s anarchist and federalist ideas, it stated: “As socialists we are aware that the cause of Ireland is our cause. Is it not the parasitism of the ruling class based on the exploitation of labour that has reduced Ireland to the present degree of misery and, we would even say, abasement? The rulers of England, bankers and landowners, have realised this very well. Were Ireland to demand independence pure and simple, they would not be worried: force is on their side. But why this panic so skilfully spread, these boosted armaments, this enrolment of special constables? It is because they do not only fear the Irish; it is against you, English workmen, that all that is directed. Think where your enemies are: among the Irish people or the English aristocracy? Recall the latter’s stand in your campaign for the electoral reform! Recall the armed soldiers ready to open fire against you during your. meetings in Hyde Park! ... The English aristocracy is out for one thing only: to make you hate the Irish people in order to distract your attention from the great economic and social reforms with which you are preoccupied and to wrest from you the few things you have won.” Judging by the editors’ note prefaced to this text, the address was reproduced in the English press.
260. In March 1868, Pellaton, the secretary of the Geneva section, addressed an appeal to all commercial and government clerks, excluding the police and court officials, urging them to form a trade union and join the International. It was published in La Voix de l'Avenir No. 11, March 15, 1868, and reprinted in La Tribune du Peuple No. 3, March 29.
261. Reference is apparently to the German democratic union in La Chaux-de-Fonds. Der Vorbote No. 3, March 1868, carried an announcement about the union’s intention to declare itself a section of the International.
262. The report of this meeting in The Bee-Hive No. 336, March 21, 1868, has the following text not recorded in the Minute Book: “A letter was read from Pest, in Hungary, announcing the establishing of a working men’s association which numbers already 800 members. The letter was accompanied by a printed manifesto containing a platform of principles equal to similar documents that are occasionally issued by working men’s associations in the most industrially developed countries.”
263. The entry is apparently wrong; the report of this meeting in The Bee-Hive No. 334, March 7, 1868, mentions Birmingham. Compare the General Council’s Minutes for October 8, 1867, which say that some copies of the Inaugural Address and Provisional Rules had been sent to the Birmingham Trades Council.
264. La Voix de l'Avenir No. 12, March 22, 1868, published the report of the Geneva building workers’ Central Committee submitted to a general meeting on January 19.
265. The Rouen section was founded in the summer of 1866 and was represented at the Geneva and Lausanne congresses by its organiser Emile Aubry, a lithographer. The section existed as a circle for studying economic problems.
266. The extracts are from La Voix de l'Avenir No. 13, March 29, 1868, in particular a letter was read from joiner Courtois, whose contractor, Baurngartner, had said that if he wanted to retain his job he had to leave the International.
267. The General Council’s statement on the Geneva building workers’ lock-out, drawn up by Eccarius and endorsed by the Standing Committee on April 4, was published in The Evening Star on April 6, 1868. Detailed information about the causes of the strike, its development and the situation in Geneva was also included by Eccarius in the report of the regular Council meeting published in The Bee-Hive No. 338, April 4, 1868.
268. The report of this meeting published in The Bee-Hive No. 338, given in April 4, 1868, states the following fact which is not a’ the Minute Book: “At Vienne ... a bi-weekly working men’s paper, Wiener Arbeiter Zeitung, has been established advocating social democracy, 30,000 copies of which were sold on the first day of its appearance.
269. Graglia, a member of the Geneva section committee, was sent to Paris and London to arrange for financial aid for the Geneva building workers on strike. He arrived in Paris on April 5; on April 6 he came to London, and in the evening of the same day he attended a meeting of the French branch; the next day Graglia was present at the General Council meeting and then, accompanied by Jung, he visited some more workers’ societies and left for Geneva after April 9.
270. In view of the attempted provocations to incite clashes between the Geneva workers and the police. La Voix de l'Avenir No. 15, April 12, 1868, printed the following announcement: “Recently members of the Association have become the objects of provocations and insults aimed at causing a clash. We hope that the provocateurs will be put in their place and that you will continue, with dignity and firmness, to advocate your just demands. Let public opinion be judge. On behalf of the Central Committee of all sections, the Executive Commission.”
271. The Paris section’s appeal for collecting funds for the Geneva building workers, drawn up and signed by Varlin, was published in the bourgeois-progressive newspaper L'Opinion nationale on April 5, 1868. The appeal set forth the causes of the strike and the workers’ demands.
272. The Social Party of New York and its suburbs, one of whose leaders was Sorge, was formed in January 1868 as a result of the merger of the Communist Club (see Note 175) and the New York General Union of German Workers. Founded in 1865 by a group of German emigrés, followers of Lassalle, the Union gradually began to depart from Lassalle’s dogmas, for which it was criticised by the orthodox Lassalleans in Germany. The formation of the Social Party was an important stage in uniting the German workers in the U.S.A. on the basis of scientific communism and greatly promoted the International’s prestige in America.
273. Apparently a slip of the pen: La Voix de l'Avenir did not publish this notice.
274. Bund Deutscher Manner — one of the German emigré organisations in London, known to exist in 1859.
275. National Sunday League — philanthropic educational organisation that fought for museums, concert halls and similar institutions to be open to workers on Sundays since they could not visit them on week-days. R. M. Morell was its honorary secretary and the bourgeois radical Baxter Langley was a member of the League’s Council. The League met strong opposition from the Church of England and sanctimonious religious organisations which fought for strict observance of the Sabbath.
As co-tenant, the General Council used the League’s office at 256, High Holborn, London, from June 1868 to February 1872.
276. As is evident from the Minutes of the previous meeting, the papers spread the rumours that the Geneva building workers’ strike was a success. The report of this meeting in The Bee-Hive No. 341, April 25, 1868, contained Jung’s refutation of these rumours and his statement that the employers had again launched an offensive, as well as the following announcement: “Under these circumstances the Council continues to solicit aid from the London workmen!’
277. The text of the “Appeal to the Paris Workers of All Trades” was reproduced in La Voix de l'Avenir No. 16, April 19, 1868.
On April 19, 1868, Le Courrier Français published another appeal by the Paris Committee, signed by Malon, Varlin and Landrin, which called-for funds for the Geneva builders.
278. On March 26, 1868, the Charleroi coalfield, Belgium, was the scene of bloody clashes between strikers, who protested against lower wages and reduced production, and the police troops. Twenty-two people, including five women, were arrested and put on trial, charged with attempted murder and damage to the colliery owners’ property. On April 5, the Brussels section set up a special committee to brief lawyers for the defence of the arrested. The lawyers managed to set public opinion in favour of the accused, and on August 15 the Jury acquitted them on the plea that the workers’ actions had been provoked by an unreasonable cut in wages that doomed their families to starvation, and that their preliminary five months’ imprisonment was in itself a severe punishment.
The Address to the Workers of the Charleroi Coalfield, to the Belgian Workers and to the Workers of All Countries, published by the Brussels section in La Tribune du Peuple No. 4, April 19, 1868, stated: “Tell your imprisoned comrades that we shall take the necessary measures to constitute a committee for their defence in court.”
279. The facts quoted by Jung were published in La Tribune du Peuple No. 4, April 19, 1868, in the report of the Brussels section meetings of March 30 and April 5, in the section’s Address to the Workers of the Charleroi Coalfield, to the Belgian Workers and to the Workers of All Countries, as well as in the reviews of political affairs and of the labour movement given in the same issue of La Tribune.
280. Reference is to the pamphlet compiled and published by BeckerDie Internationale Arbeiter Association und die Arbeitseinstellung in Genf in Fruhjahr 1868 — that appeared in Geneva in April 1868. The French translation came out also in Geneva in May 1868 under the title: L'Association Internationale des Travailleurs et la greve genevoise en mars-avril 1868, par J. Ph. Backer. Traduit par Fred. Kohn. The pamphlet was sold towards the Geneva strikers’ fund.
281. Reference is to the loans granted to the Paris bronze-workers during their strike in the spring of 1867.
The report of this meeting published in The Bee-Hive No. 342, May 2, 1868, says that this information from Paris was given by a Council member who had just returned from there.
282. Jung’s explanation at the bookbinders’ meeting concerned the activities of the French branch in London (see Note 90). At the trial of the Paris members of the International the Public Prosecutor tried to depict the French branch in London as the centre of the secret activities allegedly conducted by the International Working Men’s Association. To prove this, he mentioned two letters found during the domiciliary visits of April 17 and May 12, 1867 — in which Dupont, in connection with the Hyde Park demonstrations organised by the Reform League, expressed hopes that a European revolution was near. The documentary evidence also included a poster advertising a meeting organised by the French branch in the Cleveland Hall (see Note 243) to celebrate the anniversary of the February 1848 Revolution. The poster was signed by Dupont, Besson, Le Lubez. and others.
283. The form of the membership card of the International Working Men’s Association was first approved by the Standing Committee in November 1864. The card was meant for persons joining the International in their individual capacities and for members of workers’ societies adhering to the organisation in their corporate capacity, and was given by the General Council upon payment of their annual contributions. However, the British trade unions that joined the International in 1865-68 in large bodies did not, as a rule, receive cards for each member. The International’s sections on the Continent began issuing their own membership cards as they took shape as organisations. The General Council’s cards were used only in those countries where the International’s organisations could not function legally and where individual membership was practised, that is, where there were only individual members connected directly with the General Council. This system was widespread in Germany, Austria, and partly — in different periods — in France, Italy, Spain, and other countries.
On the original card there were the handwritten signatures of the General Council’s President, Treasurer, General Secretary and Corresponding Secretaries., Thus Marx, in his capacity as Corresponding Secretary for Germany, had to sign more than 1,500 cards (see Marx’s letter to Engels of March 13, 1865) in the first months of the International’s existence. Later, on Marx’s initiative, only the General Secretary signed the cards, while the signatures of the other Council officials were included in the cliche and printed. That is why, from time to time, the General Council had to modify the cliche in order to make the signatures conform to Council changes. Originally the cards were numbered by hand. On December 26, 1865 it was decided to number the cards fresh from the printing house by a special machine; copies have survived from the 6,000th series. But the numbering of cards met with objections, mainly because of conspiracy considerations, and in 1868 the cards ceased to be numbered. Further, the name of the card, “member’s annual subscription card,” was replaced by a shorter one, “card of membership.”
284. On May 12, 1868 Dupont, acting for Besson, still the Corresponding Secretary for Belgium, requested De Paepe to inform him of the details concerning the Charleroi events (see Note 278).
285. See Note 275.
286. The letter, dated May 21, 1868, was from Vandenhouten. Cesare De Paepe at the time was preparing for examinations at the medical faculty. He combined studies with his job as a compositor and with extensive publicist and organisational activities in the capacity of a leader of the Belgian labour movement and Belgian sections of the International.
287. See Note 240.
288. The material exposing the French and Belgian governments was used by Marx for drawing up the General Council’s report to the Brussels Congress .
289. On May 29 Marx left for Manchester to visit Engels, and his draft resolution was moved by Jung at the next Council meeting.
290. On May 16, 1868 Jules Bara, the Belgian Minister of Justice, spoke in Parliament urging the deputies to renew the Aliens Law of 1835 under which any foreigner could be expelled from the country as being politically unreliable. Bara said that he would do his best to prevent the International’s congress from meeting in Brussels.
An open letter addressed by the Executive Committee and the Federal Council of the Belgian sections to Minister Bara was published in La Tribune du People No. 5, May 24, 1868. It protested against the Belgian Government’s violation of elementary civil rights and rebuffed the slanderous accusations against the International.
291. A public meeting at Charleroi was held on May 31, 1868 and was one of the mass meetings organised by the Belgian Committee on Sundays, May 24 and 31 and June 7, in various towns to spread the ideas of the International.
292. The Free Workmen (Francs Ouvriers) of Verviers (Belgium) officially joined the International on May 4, 1868.
293. The resolution drawn up by Marx was published in The Bee-Hive No. 347, June 6,1868.
294. Reference is. to the monthly Le Federaliste, the programme of which, drawn up by Right-wing Proudhonists Fribourg and Chemale, was published in Paris in July 1868; it proclaimed the demand to liberate the proletarians “without ever calling on the assistance of authority” and put forward the mutualist principle of political, economic, agricultural, and industrial federation. This programme was to serve as an election platform for Tolain and Fribourg who wanted, to use Dupont’s words, “to come forward in 1869 as workers’ candidates for the Legislative Corps, proceeding from the principle that only workers can represent workers” (see Marx’s letter to Engels dated September 26, 1866).
The publication of Le Federaliste did not materialise.
295. Reference is to the Brussels section’s Address to the Workers of the Charleroi Coalfield, to the Belgian Workers and to the Workers of All Countries (see Note 278).
296. Reference is to the following workers’ publications in Belgium: La Tribune du Peuple — a newspaper that began publication in Brussels in 1861; in 1866 it became the Brussels section’s organ; Le Devoir — a weekly that began publication in Liege in 1865; in 1868 it became the organ of the local section of the International; Le Mirabeau — a monthly founded in December 1867 as the organ of the association of The Free Workmen of Verviers which in the spring of 1868 joined the International; De Werker — a weekly founded in Antwerp in 1868 as the organ of the Flemish section. Further, the Brussels democratic newspapers La Cigale, La Liberté, and Le Peuple Belge regularly published the International’s documents and reports about the activities of its different sections.
297. The announcement about the formation of the Nyon branch was published in La Voix de l'Avenir No. 23, June 7, 1868. Following this announcement the newspaper carried a general list of the 23 sections of the International operating in Geneva at the time.
298. The proposal, which Jung made on Marx’s instructions on June 2, to hold the next congress of the International in London instead of Brussels gave birth to a discussion in the General Council that continued at the meetings of June 9 and 16. The proposal met
with strong opposition from the English Council members headed by Odger, and some members of the French branch in London. The reason for these two groups to adopt this stand was, apparently, the fear that Marx’s presence at the congress would greatly increase the influence of the revolutionary-proletarian elements that rallied around Marx.
Prior to the Council meeting of June 9, Dupont and Jung carried out extensive work; the former, at the monthly meeting of the French branch in London held on June 6; and the latter, among the English Council members. On June 11, Jung wrote to Marx who was in Manchester: “Odger has again made his appearance and it appears with the object of preventing our Congress from taking place in London; so we have had some very hard fighting both last Tuesday and the one before and still our resolutions have not passed yet. I think I have been very successful, so far, for I have got almost the whole of the English members with us: Hales, Lucraft, Milner, Buckley; at first they were opposed to the holding of the Congress in London, that is to say: they endorsed the views of Odger; you must try to be at our meeting next Tuesday, but I should like to see you before that meeting, if you can make it convenient; so that I shall put you ‘au courant de l'affaire’.”
299. In the report of this meeting published in The Bee-Hive No. 349, June 20, 1868, correspondence from Paris is immediately followed by the text of Varlin’s speech in defence, of the condemned which he made in court on May 22.
300. The workers’ society Les Affranchis was founded in Jumet (Charleroi coalfield) on May 24, 1868 as a section of the International.
301. This article of the Paris correspondent of Les États-Unis d'Europe, organ of the bourgeois-pacifist League of Peace and Freedom published in Berne, was reproduced in La Voix de l'Avenir No. 24, June 14, 1868. Describing the International as a reformist organisation campaigning for labour legislation, the author of the article wrote: “This issue is too large and, especially, too complex to be solved otherwise than on a European scale. Any industrial issue is an international issue today.”
302. Upon his return from Manchester about June 15, Marx was able to familiarise himself with the documents received from Belgium during his absence. These were, first, the full text of the statement made by the Minister of Justice Bara and the open letter to him written by the Belgian section (see Note 290), and secondly, private letters from De Paepe and Vandenhouten affirming the section’s intention of not yielding to the government over the
Congress’s location. All this caused Marx to withdraw his resolution moved on May 26. “I do not have to say anything about the vile intrigues of Vésinier who is now here, or of Pyat, etc.,” Marx wrote to Engels on June 20, 1868 about the Council meeting of June 16. “They naturally spread rumours that we are working under Bonaparte’s dictate.
“They counted on a big scandal at this last meeting and had therefore brought many guests to it. They were very much disappointed when, after reading the documents, etc., and relying on them, I withdrew my resolution. I changed the matter in this way: the law against foreigners was not immediately directed against the International. It was general. But the International would have made a concession to the Belgian Government if, under such legislature, it chose Brussels as its meeting place.
Now things are quite the contrary. Now, when the Belgian Government directly threatens and provokes us, we should be making a concession to it if we moved the congress from Brussels, etc. At the same time I made some very cutting remarks about the heroic tone in which the opponents of my resolutions (Odger, etc.) spoke before they were aware of the changed state of circumstances. The only danger that could have been incurred, was that of cheap martyrdom and ridicule. Mrs. Law several times shouted: ‘hear, hear!’ and expressed her approval by tapping on the table. In any case I made it look as if Odger, etc., was the object of ridicule, and the rescinding of the resolutions was not interpreted as their victory.”
303. Reincke’s address to his constituency, signed Berlin, June 19, 1868, was reproduced in the report of this meeting of the General Council in The Bee-Hive No. 350, June 27, 1868.
304. The Leipzig compositors’ letter of April 24, 1868. signed by the lithographer Julius Suss, and the Paris lithographers’ reply to it, dated May 26 and signed by workers’ delegates, were reproduced in La Voix de l'Avenir No. 25, June 21, 1868.
305. The co-operative shoemakers’ workshop in Geneva was founded on the principles set forth by Marx in the “Instructions for the Delegates of the Provisional General Council” approved by the Geneva Congress of 1866 (see The General Council. 1864-1866, pp. 340-51). Unlike the supporters of Proudhon, Lassalle, Owen, and the bourgeois co-operators who regarded one or another cooperative system as a panacea from all social evils, the followers of Marx and Engels argued that the co-operative system could never transform capitalist society unless the workers took state power into their own hands. At the same time, they stressed that participation in the co-operative movement was of great educational importance to the workers for it destroyed the myth about the eternity and stability of the capitalist system, strengthened their faith in the proletariat, and imparted useful organisational and economic habits to them. In his “Instructions” Marx put .forward a number of practical measures for creating workers’ cooperatives, which were embodied in the model co-operative rules published by Becker in Der Vorbote in December 1866-January 1867. According to these rules, the Geneva co-operative shoe makers’ society handed in one-sixth of its profit to the International’s central fund; one-sixth went into the indivisible fund intended for capital investment; one-sixth was allotted for mutual aid funds; one-sixth for the reserve fund; Finally, the last two-sixths were to be shared equally among the co-operative members who, in addition, received weekly wages. The co-operative society could not employ hired labour but was obliged to admit, without restrictions, new members and accord them full rights.
306. The public meeting to celebrate the anniversary of the June 1848 Insurrection of the Paris workers was held on June 29, 1868 in the Cleveland Hall, London. Such meetings were annually convened by the German Workers’ Educational Association in London jointly with other emigré organisations.
Félix Pyat who attended the meeting read an address, which he supposedly received from the secret society called the Paris Revolutionary Commune, and moved a provocative resolution declaring the assassination of Napoleon III the sacred duty of every Frenchman. The text of the resolution was reproduced in The Bee-Hive No. 351, July 4, 1868.
307. This refers to the invitation to the International’s Congress in 1868 of a delegate from the American Labour Reform Association, an organisation founded by Osborne Ward in 1865. The American labour organisations were not represented at the Brussels Congress.
308. The Brussels newspaper La Cigale No. 25, June 21, 1868, published Pierre Vésinier’s correspondence from London which, was signed “member of the International, P. V.” The article distorted the discussion on the question of the removal of the meeting place of the Congress held at the General Council meeting on June 9 and made slanderous attacks on Dupont and Jung. On June 22 the ‘Brussels central section unanimously decided to renounce all responsibility for Vésinier’s article and to express a protest against divulging, in the press, the International’s internal affairs. The letter read at this meeting of the General Council was signed by De Paepe, Maetens, Delessalle, and Rochard on June 23, 1868.
The Belgian section’s protest against the slanderous insinuations contained in Vésinier’s article against Dupont and Jung was published in La Cigale No. 26, June 28. 1868.
309. The report of the General Council meeting of July 7, published in The Bee-Hive No. 352, July 11, 1868, has the following: “The Council has not received any notice of a strike at Geneva.”
310. The Brussels newspaper L'Espiegle No. 25, July 5, 1868, carried a report about the public meeting at the Cleveland Hall on June 29 (see Note 306) which described this meeting as a meeting of the International’s members with Pyat as one of its organisers.
311. The text of the resolution against Felix Pyat, drawn up by Marx, was published in La Liberté No. 55, July 12, and then reproduced in La Cigale No. 29, July 19, and in La Tribune du Peuple No. 7, July 26, 1868.
From Eccarius’s letter to De Paepe, dated August 7, 1868, it is evident that in its official resolution the German Workers’ Educational Association in London, which initiated the meeting in the Cleveland Hall, unreservedly subscribed to the General Council resolution. Pyat’s provocative attacks, especially untimely at the moment when France herself was the scene of increased reprisals against all revolutionaries and even all opposition, met with indignation on the part of Blanqui’s comrades-in-arm and disciples who were in Brussels. Blanquist J. Tridon administered a strong rebuff to Pyat in La Cigale No. 29, July 19, 1868; he directly accused him of provocations and disputed the existence of any secret society connected with Pyat.
312. Le Courrier Français, of May 6, 1868, carried an announcement about the collection of money for publishing the material of the .trial of the International’s members (see Note 240). “The light must find its way to the masses,” the announcement stated. The publication of Proces de l'Association Internationale des Travailleurs. Bureau de Paris. Paris, Chevalier, 1868, was realised late in summer.
313. The leaflet concerning the convocation of the Brussels Congress, published by the Brussels section and the Belgian Federal Council of the International, appeared in Brussels in the summer of 1868 in French and Flemish: Association Internationale des Travailleurs. Avis aux ouvriers de toute profession et de tous pays and Internationale Werkersvereeniging. Bericht aan de werklieden van alle handbedriff en van landen.
The French text of the leaflet was reproduced in La Voix de l'Avenir No. 36, September 6, 1868.
314. This refers to the address to the trade unionists of Great Britain and Ireland in connection with the Brussels Congress . It was published as a leaflet in London early in July 1868 under the title “To the Trades’ Unionists of Great Britain and Ireland” and in The Bee-Hive No. 353, July 25, 1868. The German translation of the address was published in part in Der Vorbote No. 8, August 1868, and in the leaflet concerning the Congress issued by the Central Committee of the Germanspeaking sections in Geneva in August 1868.
In connection with the preparations for the Brussels Congress, the German newspaper Hermann in London, in its issue No. 502, August 15, 1868, published the following “Appeal to the German Workmen in London” drawn up by Lessner and edited by Marx:
Workmen! On September 7 of this year the Third International Working Men’s Congress will assemble in Brussels.
This Congress will discuss the best means for extending, strengthening and organising the joint activities of the international working men’s association; also such questions which most closely deal with the interests of the working class and demand urgent solution. After all, it is necessary to come to a mutual agreement on the means of propaganda.
The questions which ‘the General Council suggests for discussion at the Congress are as follows:
1. Reduction and regulation of the working day;
2. The influence of machinery in the hands of capitalists;
3. The nature of landownership,
4. The education of the working class,
5. The establishment of credit institutions with an end to promoting the social emancipation of the working class;
6. The best means for founding co-operative production societies.
To carry through this initiative presented by time and circumstances, we call upon you, too, to do everything in your power as unions or as individuals. It is necessary, through voluntary contributions, to collect funds to enable the German workmen in London to be represented by one or several delegates. It would be a shame if in these stormy times among the thousands of German workmen in London there could not be found enough people, inspired by the common understanding of their own class interests, to secure their representation at the Brussels Congress.
To get down to business! It is high time that the workmen of all lands should unite and understand that in order to wage a successful struggle against the capitalists’ domination a mighty union of all contingents of the working class is needed.
It should not be forgotten that in the United States of America the eight-hour day has already been proclaimed law for all government institutions.
Let us also recall the historic words, full of profound content, which Karl Marx wrote in the Preface to Capital in 1867: “As in the eighteenth century, the American war of independence sounded the tocsin for the European middle-class, so in the nineteenth century, the American Civil War sounded it for the European working-class.”
Contributions are accepted in the German Workers’ Educational Association on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays from 9 o'clock in the evening by the secretary and the cashier.
In the name of the German Workers’ Educational Association, the German branch of the International Working Men’s Association,
315. The announcement about the suppression, by a court decision, of the Berlin branch of the General Union of German Workers was published in the Demokratische Wochenblatt No. 28, July 11, 1868.
For the annual meeting of the General Union of German Workers in Hamburg see Note 340.
316. The address entitled “The International Working Men’s Association to Its Fellow Working Men,” published in Der Vorbote No. 7, July 1868 and signed by Becker and Munch in the name of the Central Committee of the German-speaking sections, was simultaneously printed in French in La Voix de l'Avenir No. 28, July 12, 1868, and signed by Perret and Graglia in the name of the Central Committee of the sections in the Romance part of Switzerland.
317. In 1867-68 the tsarist government took a number of administrative measures in Poland to abolish the Polish institutions and realise forcible Russification. The General Council’s declaration proposed by Marx was published in the report of this meeting in The Bee-Hive No. 352, July 18,1868.
318. On June 25, 1868 the American Congress passed a law introducing the eight-hour day for the workers of all government enterprises and federal institutions.
319. The Standing Committee meeting of July 11, 1868 discussed the
draft agenda of the Brussels Congress.
320. Reference is to the address “To the Trades’ Unionists of Great Britain and Ireland.”
321. Reference is to the League of German Workers’ Unions headed by August Bebel. In his letter of July 17, 1868 Wilhelm Liebknecht informed Marx of some details concerning the preparations for the League’s general congress and of his and Bebel’s intention of raising at the congress the question of affiliating to the International.
322. Le Reveil — French weekly, and from May 1869 onwards daily, newspaper of the Left republicans; published under the editorship of Charles Delescluze in Paris between July 1868 and January 1871.
323. Reference is to the questions for collecting labour statistics contained in the General Council’s circular dated January 28, 1868.
324. Bebel’s letter of July 23, 1868 was addressed to the General Council; Liebknecht’s letter dated July 22, to Marx personally. In his letter Liebknecht insisted that Marx should come to Nuremberg to attend the general congress of the League of German Workers’ Unions as the General Council’s delegate. Marx refused, and Eccarius was sent to Nuremberg as the Council’s delegate.
The Nuremberg Congress was held on September 5-7, 1868. By a majority vote (69 to 46) the Congress resolved to join the International Working Men’s Association and elected a committee of 16 to carry out this resolution. These persons were approved by the General Council on September 22, 1868 as the Executive Committee of the International Working Men’s Association for Germany.
325. Peter Fox was at the time in Vienna.
326. An Address of the Social-Democratic Union of New York to the Working Men of Geneva, signed on June 3, 1868 by Sorge and Vidler, was published in Der Vorbote No. 7, July, in La Voix de l'Avenir No. 30, July 26, and in The Bee-Hive No. 354, August 1, 1868. An extract from the address is given below.
327. Reference is to a protest by some members of the French branch in London against the General Council’s resolution of July 7, 1868 . Informing Engels of a regular Council meeting, Marx wrote in his letter of August 4, 1868:
“The wretched French branch has made a fine scandal for us. Pyat’s followers have published in La Cigale a censure on the General Council. Their channel — the notorious Vésinier. We simply passed over to the order of the day, ignoring this vote of censure!”
The outcome of the conflict in the French branch was that, early in August 1868, the General Council members Dupont, Jung, Lafargue and Johannard, as well as the branch’s members Plantade and Serrailler, withdrew from it. Subsequently, the so-called French branch in London lost all its ties with the International although it illegally continued to bear that name. On May 10, 1870 the General Council had to officially disassociate itself from this group and adopted the text of the resolution as proposed by Marx.
328. In his speech Marx put forward the basic ideas which he deveIoped in Volume I of Capital, Chapter XIII: “Machinery and Modern Industry” (see Karl Marx Capital, Vol. I, Chapter XV, Moscow 1959, pp. 371-504).
329. Reference is to the members of the Paris Committee, of the second composition, who were sentenced to imprisonment (Combault, Varlin, Landrin, Humbert, Malon, Charboneau, Mollin, Bourdon, and Granjon) (see Note 240) and were held in the Sainte-Pelagic prison in Paris.
330. After sentence was passed upon the Paris Committee of the second composition, the Paris sections assumed a semi-legal position and did not conduct official elections of a new committee. The leadership continued to be in the hands of the former committee where Varlin played a leading role.
331. The Lyons and Neuville-sur-Saône sections sent Albert Richard to the Brussels Congress.
332. This refers to the Berne Congress of the bourgeois-pacifist League of Peace and Freedom that opened on September 22, 1868.
333. Reference is apparently to a pamphlet by James Leach, a Chartist, which Engels mentions and uses in his book The Condition of the Working Class in England (see Karl Marx and Frederick Engels, On Britain, Moscow 1962, p. 168).
334. The Viennese workmen’s address to the workmen of France and England was reproduced in La Tribune du Peuple No. 8, August 21 and in Der Vorbote No. 8, August 1868.
335. The resolution drawn up by Marx was moved by Eccarius at the Brussels Congress of the International on September 9, 1868 and made part of the Congress decision on this question.
336. The Third Congress of the National Labour Union in New York opened on September 21, 1868. The Congress rejected the proposal by the preliminary conference to nominate an independent labour candidate for the U.S. presidency; however, it adopted a detailed declaration of principles, the greater part of which is devoted to the utopian draft currency reform set forth in the Minutes of this Council meeting.
337. What is meant here is Volume I of Marx’s Capital, the first edition of which came out in German in September 1867.
338. This refers to the cotton crisis in the English industry due to the cessation of the cotton imports from America as a result of the blockade of the Southern States by the Northern fleet in the American Civil War (1861-65). In 1862, three-fifths of the total number of spindles and looms came to a standstill; over 75 per cent of the cotton workers were fully or partially unemployed for two or three years.
339. This refers to a pamphlet by the Berlin socialist Wilhelm Eichhoff Die Internationale Arbeiterassociation. Ihre Grunding Organisation, politisch-sociale Thatigkeit und Ausbreitung. Berlin, 1868. It was written on Marx’s instructions who provided Eichhoff with a plan, documents and, as is evident from Eichhoff’s letters, himself wrote some parts of it.
340. The fact that the invitation to attend the annual conference of the Lassallean General Union of German Workers, to be held in Hamburg on August 22-25, was signed by more than 20 workers from the different parts of Germany, made it incumbent upon Marx as he himself wrote to Engels on August 26, 1868, to devote special attention to his reply. “The reason I gave for not coming,” Marx wrote, “was the work of the Central Council of the International Working Men’s Association, and I said I was glad to see that the starting points of any ‘serious’ working-class movement — agitation for full political freedom, regulation of the working day and international co-operation of the working class — were emphasised in their programme for the Congress. That is, in other words, I congratulated them on having given up Lassalle’s programme.” The reply is not extant.
The Hamburg Conference showed that the most progressive members of the General Union of German Workers , influenced by the labour movement, began to disassociate themselves from the Lassallean dogmas. In principle, it recognised the necessity for joint action by the workers of different countries, but in fact the Union’s leaders prevented it from affiliating to the International.
341. Dassy was not present at the Brussels Congress.
342. The announcement about the decision to affiliate to the International adopted by the delegate meeting of 50 German workers’ educational societies in Switzerland, held in Neuchatel (Neuenburg) on August 9-10, 1868, was published in Der Vorbote No. 8, August 1868.
343. What is meant here is the address “To the Trades’ Unionists of Great Britain and Ireland” drawn up in connection with the Brussels Congress.
344. The Society for the Emancipation of Thought and the Individual (Société du sou pour I'affranchissement de la pensee et de l'individu), numbering nearly 1,000 members, at its general meeting on August 15 expressed its sympathy with the International and elected Catalan as its delegate to the Brussels Congress.
345. Drawn up by Marx, this resolution was published in The Bee-Hive No. 359, August 29, 1868. At the Brussels Congress this resolution was moved by Eccarius and read in the report of the commission on reducing working hours on September 12, 1868.
346. The Fourth Annual Report of the General Council of the International Working Men’s Association drawn up by Marx was delivered at the Brussels Congress on September 7. It was first published in English in Eccarius’s correspondence in The Times on September 9, 1868. The German translation, made by Marx himself, is extant in the form of a copy written by Marx’s wife; it was published in Der Vorbote No. 9 in September and in Demokratisches Wochenblatt No. 37, September 12, 1868. In French the report was published in a special supplement to the newspaper Le Peuple Belge and in the newspaper La Liberté No. 64, September 13, 1868.
347. Eccarius left London on August 29, 1868.
348. The General Council’s accounts were submitted for approval by the Congress of the International.
The Minutes of the General Council published in this volume show that Marx took an active part in and exercised direct leadership over the Council’s preparations for the Brussels Congress. However, Marx himself was not present at the Congress. The Brussels Congress was attended by nearly 100 delegates representing the workers of Britain, France, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland, Italy and Spain. It adopted an important resolution necessitating the establishment of common ownership of the railways, mines and quarries, as well as the forests and arable land. This reso. lution showed that the majority of French and Belgian Proudhonists had become supporters of collectivism, and marked the victory of proletarian socialism over petty-bourgeois reformism within the International. The Congress adopted Marx’s resolutions on the eight-hour day, on the influence of machinery upon the condition of the workers under capitalism, on the attitude towards the Congress of the bourgeois-democratic League of Peace and Freedom , as well ‘as Lessner’s resolution, moved in the name of the German delegation, recommending the workers of all countries to study Marx’s Capital and secure its translation into other languages.
349. These notes were prepared by Marx for his speech to be delivered in the General Council (see Note 229). Started on November 19, 1867, the discussion on Ireland, on Marx’s proposal, was adjourned to the next meeting, November 26, when Marx intended to make his speech. On November 23, however, three of the convicted Fenians were executed in Manchester. Marx thought his speech inappropriate in the conditions of general excitement caused by the execution. He yielded the floor to Peter Fox, considering it important that at such a crucial moment an English member of the General Council should speak expressing sympathy with the Irish and condemning the British Government’s bloody act. Marx used these notes for his undelivered speech and the material he collected for it in the report on Ireland which he delivered in the German Workers’ Educational Association in London on December 16, 1867.
350. Reference is to the Act of Settlement passed by the Long Parliament on August 12, 1652, following the suppression of the Irish national liberation uprising of 1641-52. It legalised the regime of bloody violence and terror established in Ireland by the British colonialists and sanctioned the plunder of Irish lands in favour of the British bourgeoisie and of the “new,” bourgeoisified nobility. Under this Act most of the Irish were declared “guilty of revolt.” Among the “guilty” were listed even Irishmen who did not show proper “loyalty” to the British crown though they had not taken a direct part in the uprising. Depending on the degree of their participation in the uprising the “guilty” were divided into categories and subjected to severe repressive measures: execution, deportation, and confiscation of property. On September 26, 1653 this Act of Settlement was supplemented by a new Act prescribing the transfer of Irishmen whose land was confiscated into the deserted province of Connaught and County Clare, and establishing the order for allotting the confiscated land to the parliamentary creditors and British officers and soldiers. Both Acts consolidated and extended the economic basis of English landlordism in Ireland.
351. The Habeas Corpus Act was enacted by the British Parliament in 1679. By this Act every writ must have a motive and a detainee has to be brought to court within a short space of time (from 3 to 20 days), or freed. The Act does not extend to high treason and can be suspended by Parliament.
352. Describing in these words the British Government’s brutal policy towards the Irish Fenians, Marx uses the appraisal of the Fenian movement given by the Queen of England in her address to Parliament on November 19, 1867.
The Chronicle — English Catholic weekly, published in London in 1867-68.
353. In 1840, during his unsuccessful attempt to effect a coup d'etat in Boulogne, Louis Bonaparte wounded an officer of the government troops. In Es letter to Marx, dated November 24, 1867, Engels, referring to this episode, wrote that the British ruling classes for a similar incident, falsely incriminated at that, sent Fenians to the gallows, showing at the same time their servility and toadyism in regard to Napoleon III, the crowned criminal.
354. Under the corn acre system, characteristic of Irish land tenure, the bigger tenant, a middleman as a rule, leased, on shackling terms, land — plots of half an acre or an acre — to poorer tenants or farm hands. The ,er.m came into use in the eighteenth century, following the adoption of the law ordering that the rented plots had to be sown with cereals.
355. In describing the dreadful conditions of the Irish peasants in connection with the “clearing of estates,” Marx alludes here to the analogous process of forced eviction of the Gaels (the Scottish Highlands) by the Anglo-Scottish aristocracy in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries; Marx describes this process in his article “Elections. — Financial Difficulties. — Duchess of Sutherland and Slavery” and in Chapter XXIV of Volume I of Capital (see Karl Marx, Capital, Vol. 1, Chapter XXVII, Moscow, 1959, pp. 717-33).
356. This refers to the Anglo-Irish Union imposed by the British Government on Ireland following the suppression of the Irish national uprising of 1798. Made effective as of January 1, 1801, this Union did away with the last vestiges of Ireland’s autonomy and dissolved the Irish Parliament. It made for the consolidation of the British colonial rule in Ireland. One of the economic consequences of the Union was, in particular, the abolition of the protective duties for the developing Irish industry, duties which were established by the Irish Parliament late in the eighteenth century. This led to the decline of Irish industry.
357. This refers to the movement for the abolition of the restrictions of political rights for Catholics, most of whom were Irish, that developed in the early decades of the nineteenth century. In Ireland this movement was directed by the liberal bourgeoisie, with Daniel O'Connell at its head, which by the slogan of Catholic Emancipation secured peasant support. The movement lasted. until 1829 when Catholics were granted the right to hold certain government posts and to be elected to Parliament; simultaneously the property qualification increased fivefold.
358. Reference is to the Reform League’s erroneous position in relation to the Irish national liberation movement (see Note 226).
359. This document is the form of application for working men’s societies wishing to join the International Association (see Note 65).
360. Reference is to the celebration meeting, held in St. Martin’s Hall on September 28, 1865 in honour of the first anniversary of the foundation of the International Working Men’s Association.
361. This apparently refers to the anniversary meeting of the June 1848 Insurrection of the Paris workers. Organised by the German Workers’ Educational Association in London, this meeting was held in the Metropolitan Institution, Cleveland Street, on June 28, 1865 (see The General Council. 1864-1866, p. 107).
362. What is meant here is the address to U.S. President Johnson adopted by the General Council on May 9, 1865. Drawn up by Marx, it was rewritten on parchment to be sent to the President.
363. The General Council used the room in 18, Greek Street for its weekly meetings between October 5, 1864 and January 2, 1866.
364. The National Reform Conference met in Manchester on May 15-16, 1865, the General Council members Howell, Cremer, and Odger taking part in it.
365. In the house at 8, Adelphi Terrace, The Strand, the London 1865 Conference of the International Association held its evening sessions on September 25-27 (see The General Council. 1864-1866, pp. 236-45).
366. The Rules and Administrative Regulations of the International Working Men’s Association were approved by the Geneva Congress at its sessions of September 5 and 8, 1866. These Rules are based on the Provisional Rules drawn up by Marx in October 1864. The Administrative Regulations were worked out during the Geneva Congress by a commission of which Eccarius was a member. In this volume the Rules and Regulations are printed according to the English edition of 1867 In whose publication Marx was active. In German they were published in Der Vorbote No. 9, September 1866. In addition, the Administrative Regulations appeared in The International Courier No. 17, May 1, 1867 and in Le Courrier International No. 17, April 27, 1867.
367. This statement was written by Fox, whom the General Council instructed on January 1, 1867 to prepare for publication the material on the confiscation of the Geneva Congress (1866) documents by the French police.
368. This leaflet was issued in connection with the preparations for the meeting in the Cambridge Hall, London, to celebrate the fourth anniversary of the Polish Insurrection of 1863-64 (see Note 100). The first resolution was moved by Zabicki; the second, by Marx; the third — in French — by Besson; and the fourth, by Fox.
369. Congress Poland — part of Poland which under the official name of Polish Kingdom was ceded to Russia by decision of the Vienna Congress of 1814-15.
370. This appeal was drawn up by Eccarius on the General Council’s instructions.
371. Reference is to the French text of the Rules and Administrative Regulations published in November 1866 in the form of a membership card (carnet) (see Note 50).
372. This address in English was drawn up by a commission appointed by the General Council on June 4. Marx, who was a member of the commission, was unable to take part in its work (see Note 154).
373. Reference is to the English members of the International participating in the organisation of the workers’ mass reform movement (see Note 200).
374. This document is the French version of the General Council’s appeal regarding the Lausanne Congress drawn up by Lafargue, who was entrusted with the job at the Council meeting of July 9, 1867, and edited by Marx.
375. This refers to the strikes of the Paris bronze-workers and tailors in February and March 1867 (see Notes 111, 123, and 128).
376. The Commission Appointed To Make Inquiry Respecting the English Trade Unions was set up in February 1867 because of the intensified activities of the unions. Beginning this inquiry the ruling circles secretly hoped to outlaw the trade unions or at least to restrict their activities. In answer to this, the trade unions held meetings throughout the country and convened a national conference in London on March 5-8, 1867. The royal commission, however, failed to advance any serious accusations against the trade unions.
377. The report is given in the present volume according to The Bee-Hive No. 309, September 14, 1867. The English text of the report differs from the French text published in the pamphlet Rapports lus au Congrès ouvrier reuni du 2 au 8 septembre 1867 a Lausanne. Chaux-de-Fonds, 1867. Further, the English text omitted parts of the report about the French, Swiss, Belgian and American sections of the International. Part of the report concerning America is published here as a separate document according to Fox’s manuscript contained in the Minute Book. For the French, Swiss and Belgian sections see Note 379.
378. See Note 147.
379. Further, the French edition has the following reports about the French, Swiss, and Belgian sections:
The General Council’s mission is to correspond with the individual branches in those countries where restrictive legislation prevents the safe establishment of a centre of action. Such is, for example, the situation in France.
It has been shown above that all of the General Council’s attempts to get into France membership cards containing the Rules and Administrative Regulations of the International Association failed because the French authorities seized our property, even though nothing warranted that violation of the law. But the obstacles raised by the French authorities went further than that. Our correspondents vainly asked permission to print our Rules and Regulations — they invariably met the most stubborn refusal.
The Lyons Committee, which in 1866 succeeded in holding meetings of over 500 members, was unable to call a general meeting after the Geneva Congress.
The courageous perseverance of the Lyons members with regard to the authorities resulted in even the blindest seeing how far the French Government was willing to grant the working man freedom.
It As worth noting that these obstacles and this petty harassing did not for one moment check our Association’s progress.
Vienne, Isere, which barely had 80 members, today numbers more than 500
In Neuville-sur-Saône. one of our branches has founded a consumers’ co-operative society, thereby drawing farm labourers into public activity, which they had previously been considered to frown on.
Our Caen correspondent reports that the working people’s union in that town is gaining strength from day to day. This alliance has enabled the harness-makers, mechanics, tanners, saddlers, blacksmiths and others to secure a one-hour reduction of their working day without a wage cut.
In Fuveau, Bouches-du-Rhone, the International Association has numerous members among the miners, whose recent strike caused such a stir.
On August 5 last the General Council was informed of the establishment of a Committee in Fuveau itself. We owe this achievement to the courageous propaganda conducted by Citizen Vasseur, a Marseilles Committee member, who on July 21 last wrote to us:
“A struggle is on between labour and capital, one that is both sad and amusing, with a band of officials and clerks making propaganda tours to turn the workers away from the International Association, on the one hand, and a handful of energetic and devoted people fighting continuously against the attacks of our opponents and disseminating the ideas of independence and justice among the working people on the other.”
In conclusion he wrote:
“No human power can uproot the ideas of emancipation that we have sown in the country, for our opponents have to combat two things which are very hard to defeat: right and will.”
On the whole, the working man realises that where there’s a will there’s a way, and that he has only himself to count on if he wants to win complete political and social liberty.
Here is a list of the branches in existence before the last Congress met, giving the amounts they contributed in 1866 and 1867:
|New Branches Set Up After the Congress|
From Switzerland we have received reports from the Central Committee only. There, as in England, the International Association’s job is to enlist workers’ societies and recruit as many individual members as possible. We wish to note, however, that workers’. societies in Switzerland have smaller memberships than they have in England.
Here are the towns where branches have been set up:
Geneva, Carouge, Lausanne, Vevey, Montreux, Neuchatel, La Chaux-de-Fonds, Le Locle, Sainte-Croix, Saint-Imier, Sonvillier, Bienne, Moutier, Boncourt, Zurich, Wetzikon, Basle, Berne, Tramelan, Les Breuleux and Les Bois,
|Money Received from Those Branches in 1866 and 1867|
|Geneva (Romanish Section)||4||—||—|
|Geneva (German Section)||1||7||9|
Report from the Corresponding Secretary for Belgium to the General Council of the International Working Men’s Association
“I have been corresponding with Belgium since the basketmakers’ strike. I wrote a letter about it to Citizen Vandenhouten and it was published in La Tribune du Peuple a week later. On behalf of the General Council, I informed him that an agent of the master basket-makers had left for London to recruit Belgian basket-makers. I told him that our organisation must foil the agent’s plans and that solidarity obliged the Belgian workers to decline all recruitment offers in order to ensure the victory of their English brothers.
“I then informed Citizen Vandenhouten of the return of several Belgian basket-makers who had arrived in London taking on trust the promises the employers had given but not held, and of the fraternal sentiments of the English basket-makers. I stressed in the letter the contribution which the activity of the General Council had made to the triumph of the workers over the employers.
“I corresponded with Citizen Brismee about printing the Geneva Congress report. The correspondence got us nowhere in the sense that I asked him, on the advice of the Genera! Council, for a loan which he could not give. My last letter on this point was left unanswered — it must have been hard for Citizen Brismee, whose devotion is well known, to have to refuse formally. That is how I interpret his silence.
“I sent Citizen Vandenhouten a letter of the General Council concerning the Belgian cigar-makers, asking him to give the letter as much publicity as possible. I did as much with regard to the General Council resolutions on the Tsar’s visit to Paris. I informed the Brussels office of the General Council resolution on the strike of the London tailors, recommending to the Belgian tailors not to come to London to work in shops on strike, and to all Belgian workers to show their solidarity by helping the London tailors with funds.
“I sent the General Council circular on the Lausanne Congress to Citizen De Witte at 6, St. Gilles and to Citizen Vandenhouten in Brussels, asking them to give it the greatest possible attention and publicity.
“In short, I did all that the Council had asked me to do, and I make bold to say that I have had no criticism from Belgium. I enclose with this brief report the few letters I have received. As regards correspondence expenses, I think I am perfectly able to make this little sacrifice for the Association.
“Greetings and fraternity!
380. See Notes 166 and 193.
381. Reference is to the International Ironmoulders’ Union (see Note 166).
382. The French text has the following signatures after these words: In the name of the General Council:
ECCARIUS, General Secretary W. DELL, Treasurer
SHAW, Secretary-Treasurer Corresponding Secretaries: E. DUPONT for France K. MARX for Germany ZABICKI for Poland
H. JUNG for Switzerland P. FOX for America
BESSON for Belgium CARTER for Italy
P. LAFARGUE for Spain HANSEN for Denmark
383. Drawn up by Fox. this report has reached us in manuscript form appended to the General Council’s Minute Book (see Note 204). The present volume reproduces this manuscript, the text of which, apart from a few details, coincides with the French text of the report (see Note 377).
384. This refers to the Lausanne Congress of the International.
385. The text of the General Council’s memorial to Minister Gathorne-Hardy, drawn up by Marx, is extant in the Minute Book and in the form of the MS copy made by Jenny, Marx’s wife, and reproduced in this volume. Written as an article, this copy was to be sent to the press but in fact was never published in English. The French translation of this article appeared in Le Courrier Français No. 163, November 24, 1867.
386. This list of questions on labour statistics was sent out to the secretaries and members of the International Association as a circular, as was decided by the Geneva Congress of 1866. It corresponds to the text of Marx’s “Instructions for the Delegates of the Provisional General Council” (see The General Council. 1864-1866, p. 342).
387. Approved on January 28, 1868, this circular shows that preparations for the Brussels Congress began in good time and were made in a much more organised manner than for the Lausanne Congress. The right direction given by the list of questions submitted for deliberation made for the consolidation of the proletarian revolutionary nucleus of the International and its victory at the Brussels Congress of 1868.
388. Because of tactical considerations this letter, meant for the bourgeois press, conceals the General Council’s genuine attitude to the workers’ strike movement. At the Geneva Congress of 1866 the strike issue, which was not included in the agenda as a separate item, arose during the discussion of the second point of the agenda: “International Combination of Efforts, by the Agency of the Association, in the Struggle Between Labour and Capital.” The “Instructions” drawn up by Marx (see Note 5) in this connection did not speak of strikes as such but of the necessity to institute a statistical inquiry into working conditions in different countries and branches of industry. During the ensuing discussion of this issue at the Congress, the General Council’s delegates encountered dogmatic condemnation of strikes and a utopian trust in the association of small producers so characteristic of the French and Swiss Proudhonists. In reply to their arguments Dupont stated: “Even condemning the strike in principle, one should recognise it as the only means of struggle at the disposal of the working class.” The vague resolution adopted by the Congress did not give a clear answer to the question of the International Association’s attitude to strikes, a fact of which the authors of this letter availed themselves.
A detailed resolution on the place and importance of strikes in the workers’ emancipation movement was adopted by the Brussels Congress on September 8, 1868.
389. See Note 240.
390. In connection with the preparations for the Brussels Congress (September 6-13, 1868), at the General Council meeting of June 23, 1868 a proposal was moved, and seconded by Marx, to draft an address to the British trade unions. It was done by Hales, Lafargue and Copeland and, following the discussion of the draft address at the Council meeting on June 30, it was approved by the Council on July 7, 1868 and sent to print (see Note 314) to be published in leaflet form. The 1,000 copies of the address were quickly sold out, and the General Council, at its meeting on July 21, decided to publish an additional 500 copies. It was also published in The Bee-Hive No. 353, July 25, 1868; in German the address was partly reproduced in Der Vorbote No. 8, August 1868.
391. Reference is to the International Association’s Conference held in London in 1865.
392. This report on the activities of the International Association for the past year, drawn up by Marx for the Brussels Congress of 1868, was approved by the General Council on September 1, 1868. In this volume the report is published according to The Times, the text of which slightly differs from the German translation made by Marx (see also Note 346).
393. Reference is to the Memoire of the French delegates (see Note 36).
394. See Note 240.
395. In France, according to Article 291 of the Criminal Code and the Law of April 10, 1834, any society numbering over 20 people had to be sanctioned by the respective authorities.
396. See Note 278.
397. At Mentana, on November 3, 1867, the French army, jointly with the Pope’s hired guards, defeated Garibaldi who had undertaken a new campaign against Rome to liberate the city from the French and annex it to the Italian state.
398. Reference is to the Prussian anti-workers’ law of March 11, 1850.
399. Reference is to the activities of Becker and the Central Committee of the German-speaking sections in Switzerland. Headed by Becker, the Committee was in fact, until 1869 when the Eisenacher Party was founded, the organisational centre of the different sections existing semi-legally in Germany.
400. Reference is to the general meeting of the General Union of German Workers held in Hamburg on August 22-25, 1868 (see Note 340). The resolution adopted at the meeting was published in Der Social-Demokrat No. 102, September 2, 1868.
For the Nuremberg Congress of the League of German Workers’ Union see Note 324.
401. See Note 342.