This web site can be used as a research guide to the eleven volumes of the Samuel Gompers Papers published so far and to our microfilm collections.
We provide short descriptions of each volume's scope, the index to the volume, and, beginning with Volume 8, the introduction that appears in the volume.
We also provide finding aids for our two microfilm collections, including contents and reel lists to faciliate borrowing microfilm reels through inter-library loans. A selective subject guide is also available to help locate materials related to women, black and immigrant workers, and to AFL organizers.
Along with biographical information about Gompers and some leading labor activists, a chronology of the labor movement in the Gompers' era, and a selection of Gompers' thoughts on various issues of the day, this web site also offers a sampling of primary documents including correspondence, newspaper articles, and political cartoons. Researchers can find extensive documentation of the founding of the American Federation of Labor, its trade union philosophy, and its organizing efforts and the founding of its predecessor, the Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions. We also provide an eye-witness report of the Industrial Workers of the World's founding convention. Conflict between the Cigar Makers International Union (Gompers' union) and the Knights of Labor is all well-documented here.
A glossary of individuals and organizations, a short labor history bibliography, and links to related web sites are also available here.