Meeting of Sub-Committee, September 9, 1871

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First published in English in The General Council of the First International. 1870-1871. Minutes, Moscow, 1967, pp. 317-19.

9th September, 8 o'clock

Longuet in the Chair.

Marx proposes that as to Landeck the General Council has nothing to do with the question [whether] he still belongs to the International or not, and that he be referred to the French Internationals in London to settle this.—L. has, on the trial of the Internationals in Paris, eaten humble pie and promised not to belay to the International in future; but such questions cannot be settled by the Council.

Mottershead seconds.

Carried unanimously.

The Conference.[1], Marx: a Conference is not composed of delegates of branches but of delegates of countries which come to confer with the Council under extraordinary circumstances and therefore very different from a Congress and has quite different powers. This has not to be forgotten. The first question will be

1) the money questions, the contributions have not come in as they ought to do. The Conference has no power to change the Statutes but it can enforce them. Therefore proposal No. 1 branches to pay before admittance.

Jung seconds. Adopted unanimously.

Marx: 2) (Countries where the International is suppressed to propose their own plans, and to be allowed other names but not secret.)

Eccarius seconds. Adopted unanimously.

Marx: 3) That some members be appointed to draw up the Report of Council to be submitted to Conference for last 2 years. Adopted as a matter of course.

Jung proposes, Eccarius seconds Marx to draw up the Report.

Marx: 4) To enforce the resolution of Congress of Basel, that the Central Council to be called Federal Council, etc., etc.[2]

Serraillier seconds. Adopted unanimously.

Marx: 5) Reply to be issued to different governments to be drawn up afterwards.

Engels seconds. Adopted unanimously.

[Marx:] 6) In regularly organized countries regular reports of local and district taxation to be sent in.

This is withdrawn by Marx himself.

Marx: 7) All delegates of General Council to have the right to attend and be heard at meetings of district councils and local branches.

Serraillier seconds. Adopted unanimously.

Marx: 8) General Council to issue fresh edition of Statutes and authentic French and German version, printed side by side; and all other countries to have their translations approved by General Council before publishing.

Jung seconds. Adopted unanimously.

Mottershead: That the Conference be asked to charge the General Council with enforcing Art. V. of the Statutes relative to a general statistics of the Working Classes and the resolution of the Congress of Geneva on the same subject.[3]

To carry this out it might be resolved that trades unions etc who refuse to give the information required, shall not be supported by the General Council in case of strike.

McDonnell seconds. Adopted unanimously!

Marx: That the Sub-Committee meets at 8 at Marx’s on Monday evening.


  1. Preliminary draft resolutions were submitted by Marx to the Sub-Committee of the General Council (see Note 238) and approved by it on September 9, 1871. Later, the drafts were supplemented; in particular, clauses were added on the formation of working women's sections and on the general statistics of the working class. On September 12, after Engels' report, the resolutions were discussed and approved by the General Council. At the London Conference, Marx moved these resolutions on behalf of the General Council. Some of them were edited and subsequently included in the official publication of the Conference resolutions (see resolutions of the London Conference II, III, IV and X, in this volume, pp. 423, 424, 427). Engels' manuscript contains additions made by Marx. They were published in English for the first time in: The General Council of the First International. 1870-1871. Minutes, Moscow, 1967.
  2. The reference to the resolutions of the Congress of Basle is inaccurate. The Congress of Basle (1869) adopted a number of resolutions enhancing the leading role of the General Council, but it did not adopt a resolution on the designation of local branches of the International. Such a resolution was adopted at the London Conference (1871) and, after its approval by the General Council, included in the Administrative Regulations of the International Working Men's Association (see present edition, Vol. 23) without any reference to the Congress of Basle.
  3. K. Marx, Rules and Administrative Regulations of the International Working Men's Association (present edition, Vol. 20, Appendices); Resolutions of the Congress of Geneva, 1866, and the Congress of Brussels, 1868. The International Working Men's Association. Office of General Council, London [1869].— Ed.