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Labor History

Find information about primary resources in Labor History as well as a variety of labor history subject guides and indexes.

About AFL-CIO Records at UMD

                 
 The University of Maryland is the official repository for records of the American Federation of Labor (AFL), selected records of the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO), and the merged American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO).  


These records date from the establishment of the AFL (1881), and offer almost complete records from the founding of the AFL-CIO (1955).

 
   

 

Guide to Collections

This guide provides a comprehensive list of AFL-CIO collections that are open and available for research. Use ctrl+F to search for keywords within the guide.

Questions? Contact us for detailed finding aids and additional information.

AFL-CIO Department Records

Guide to Collections

This guide provides a comprehensive list of collections that are open and available for research. Use ctrl+F to search for keywords within the guide.

The University of Maryland and the AFL-CIO are committed to opening closed records, however due to the volume of records and limited resources, this process may take up to a year to complete.  We are working through requests on a first come, first served basis.  From 2013-present archive and AFL-CIO staff have worked together to open records from the following departments: Office of the President, Department of International Affairs, Committee on Political Education (COPE), Solidarity Center: African American Labor Center (AALC), and Solidarity Center: American Institute for Free Labor Development (AIFLD).  Please contact askhornbake@umd.edu for more information about what is open (but unprocessed), and how to access materials in the Maryland Room.

The following AFL-CIO Departments continue to send us new material. 
  • Civil Rights Department
  • Committee on Political Education (COPE)
  • Education Department
  • Executive Council
  • Information Department
  • Legislation Department
  • International Affairs Department
  • Office of the General Counsel
  • Office of the President
  • Office of the Secretary-Treasurer
  • Organizing Department
  • Support Services Department

Additional materials:

  • Scrapbooks, 1883-1982
  • AFL-CIO Merger Oral History Project, 1978-1980
  • Posters, Broadsides, and Art, 1900-
  • Artifact Collection

 

Contact us for more detailed finding aids and further information.

Related Personal Papers

Contact us for more information about these collections:

William Baillie Baird

Irving Brown

Gordon H. Cole 

George Delaney

Thomas Donahue

Anne Draper

Gabriel Edmonston

Frank Fernbach

George Harris

Nat Goldfinger

Samuel Gompers (selected)

Samuel Gompers Papers
(Editorial Project)

William Green

Everett Kassalow

Lane Kirkland

Alan Kistler

John L. Lewis (selected)

Jay Lovestone

George Meany

Vanni Buscemi Montana

Frank Morrison

Morris S. Novik

William Pollard

Larry Rogin

Serafino Romualdi

Michael Ross

Stanley H. Ruttenberg

Morris B. Schnapper

William F. Schnitzler

Boris Shishkin

Donald Slaiman

Anthony Wayne Smith

John J. Sweeney

Virginia Tehas

Guides to Unions Affiliated with the AFL-CIO

The AFL-CIO is comprised of various affiliated labor unions and labor organizations and state central bodies. Each individual affiliated organization maintains their own archival records.  

Guides about affiliated organizations: 

Guides to AFL-CIO History

Guide to Collections

The above guide provides a comprehensive list of collections that are open and available for research. Use ctrl+F to search for keywords within the guide.

AFL, CIO, and AFL-CIO History:

AFL, CIO, and AFL-CIO Structure and Organization:

AFL-CIO Press Release Indexes: 

AFL-CIO Convention and Executive Council Statements: