Working Class Movement Library

A blog from the Working Class Movement Library in Salford

Furniture trade union collections

Posted by wcmlibrary on May 6, 2010

The catalogues of the furniture trade unions that became part of the GMB are now available on the Library catalogue. This includes:Image from the front page of the National Amalgamated Furnishing Trades Association annual report

  • Alliance Cabinet Makers’ Association (TU/FURNA)
  • National Amalgamated Furnishing Trades Association (TU/FURNB)
  • National Union of Furniture Trade Operatives (TU/FURNC)
  • Furniture Timber and Allied Trades Union (TU/FURND)
  • Amalgamated Union of Upholsterers (TU/FURNE)
  • United French Polisher Society (TU/FURNF)
  • Amalgamated Society of Gilders (TU/FURNG)
  • National Union of Musical Instrument Makers and Organ Builders Trade Society (TU/FURNH)

All these collections can now be searched in the archives section of our online catalogue www.wcml.org.uk/catalogue/adlib-catalogue/

The collections consist of annual reports, minutes of the executive committees, rule books, other papers and some minute books and registers from local branches.

One of the more interesting items is the admission and withdrawal of members book of the Amalgamated Gilders’ Society, London branch. This includes an entry for one man who was thrown out the union, as he turned up drunk to audit the books and when he was told to leave, he tried to fight the Secretary.

Another is the annual reports of the Alliance Cabinet Makers Association in the 1870s, which contain lists of books that were available in their library. This gives an interesting insights into the kind of books the members were reading including Plutarch’s Lives, Martineau on Political Economy, Thiers’ History of the French Revolution, novels by Charles Dickens and the Rights of Man and Common Sense by Thomas Paine!!

Kate

Project Archivist

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