Convocation to the International Workers' Congress of 1889 (Marxist)

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A few weeks ago we pointed out that in all probability two international working-men's congresses would be held this year at Paris, and that, in case of this event happening, the Socialist League would certainly join in with those Continental bodies which hold the most advanced views and represent really the cause of international revolutionary Socialism. Our French comrades have now issued a circular convoking all Socialists of Europe and America to the Paris Congress, and we give it in full hereunder:

National Federation of French Trades' Unions: National Council Bordeaux, 1889.

Executive Commission of the National Socialist Working Men's Congress of Troyes, 1888—1889.

International Socialist Working Men's Congress, 14th to 21st July Paris, 1889.[edit source]

Address to the Workmen and Socialists of Europe and America.[edit source]

In October 1888 a National Congress was held at Bordeaux, at which were represented upwards of two hundred Trades' Unions and Socialist groups. This Congress resolved that during the Exhibition an International Congress be held in Paris.

A like resolution was adopted by the National Congress held at Troyes in December 1888, at which were represented all the fractions of the French Socialist party.

The National Council appointed by the Bordeaux Congress, and the Executive Commission appointed by the Troyes Congress, were charged with the common organisation of the International Congress, and with the invitation — without distinction of party — of all the workers and Socialists of Europe and America whose aim is the emancipation of labour. All this has been carried out.

On the 28th of February, 1889, an International Conference took place at the Hague, attended by delegates of the Socialist parties of Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, Holland, and France. W. Morris, of the Socialist League, and the Danish delegates, sent in excuses, declaring their adherence to the resolutions that should be adopted.

The Conference of the Hague resolved:

  1. That the Paris International Congress be held from the 14th to 21st July, 1889.
  2. That the Congress be open to the workmen and Socialists of all countries — on conditions compatible with the political laws in force in each.
  3. That the Congress be sovereign with respect to the verification of credentials and the fixing of the order of the day.

The Conference resolved, provisionally, that the following questions be treated:

  1. International labour legislation; Regulation, by law, of the working day (day-work, night-work, holidays, work of adult males, women, and children).
  2. Inspection of factories and workshops, as well as of domestic industries.
  3. Ways and means to obtain these demands.

In fulfilment, therefore, of the mandate conferred on us by the Congresses of Bordeaux and of Troyes, and in conformity with the resolutions adopted by the Hague International Conference —

  1. We convoke the Paris International Congress to be held from the 14th to 21st July, 1889.
  2. The questions to be treated are those fixed by the Hague Conference.
  3. We invite the Socialist and working-men's organisations of Europe and America to this Congress, which will lay the foundations of the union of the workers and the Socialists of both hemispheres.

We have appointed in Paris an Executive Committee to definitely organise the International Congress and make arrangements for the reception of the foreign delegates.

We send our fraternal greetings to the workmen and the Socialists of the whole world.

May the universal emancipation of the workers be achieved!

For the National Council of Bordeaux — The General Secretary, R. Lavigne, 16, Rue Sullivan.

For the Executive Commission of Troyes — The General Secretary, G. Batisse, Rue de la Grande Planche, 22, a St. André près Troyes.


For the Federation of the Paris Trades' Unions — Boule, Besset, Manceau, Roussel, and Feline.

For the Socialist Organisations of Paris — Vaillant, Guesde, Deville, Jaclard, Crepin, and Lafargue.

For the Socialist Group in the Paris Town Council — Daumas, Longuet,Vaillant, and Chauviere, Town Councillors.

For the Socialist Group in the Chamber of Deputies — Ferroul and Planteau, Deputies.

Secretary for France — Besset, Bourse du Travail (Labour Exchange), Rue J. J. Rousseau, Paris.

Secretary for Foreign Countries — Paul Lafargue, Le Perreux, Paris.