Welcome to the ITUC section of our Decade of Centenaries website.
The annual reports of the Irish Trades Union Congress (ITUC) constitute a major archive covering all aspects of political, economic and social life in Ireland. Until now they have only been available to a handful of specialists in labour history. By placing reports from 1901 to 1925 online in conjunction with the National Archives, the Irish Congress of Trade Unions is making them available to everyone interested in developing a fuller understanding of the era that saw the advent of partition and the emergence of the modern Irish state.
While industrial relations occupy an important place in these reports, so do pressing social concerns such as housing conditions, public health and political questions such as Home Rule and female suffrage. In the early reports the Irish Parliamentary Party looms large and acted as a conduit for raising issues with the British government, arranging meetings with senior civil servants and Cabinet Ministers on occasion. The exchanges with politicians such as John Redmond, leader of the Irish Party and Lloyd George, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, offer insights into their attitude towards issues ranging from partition to free school meals for children.
The ITUC reports online, supported by informative extracts made by Padraig Yeates, and many interesting photographs from our cultural institutions and other sources, are the result of a partnership between the National Archives and the Irish Congress of Trade Unions.