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Labour Collection

"Labour: A Journey of Struggle, Solidarity, and Strength" Labour has been the driving force behind societal progress throughout history

Background imageLabour Collection: Blowing glass in a British factory, 1800s

Blowing glass in a British factory, 1800s
Workers in a crown-glass factory, Great Britain, early 1800s. Hand-colored engraving of a 19th-century illustration

Background imageLabour Collection: Polkanuggo Quarry, Stithians, Cornwall. September 1902

Polkanuggo Quarry, Stithians, Cornwall. September 1902
A view of the quarry face showing workers sitting on a granite block weighing an estimated 2, 738 tons. It was claimed to be the largest single block ever quarried

Background imageLabour Collection: Quarry in Mabe or Constantine, Cornwall. 1903-1904

Quarry in Mabe or Constantine, Cornwall. 1903-1904
A view of the quarry face showing two workers with sledge hammers standing by a granite block that is being dressed. Part of the Freeman & Sons, Penryn Collection. Photographer: Unknown

Background imageLabour Collection: Freeman & Sons dressing floor, probably Penryn, Cornwall. 1903-1904

Freeman & Sons dressing floor, probably Penryn, Cornwall. 1903-1904
Classical granite columns on the dressing floor of Freeman & Sons works. The man pictured is either Bernard Freeman or his brother. Part of the Freeman & Sons, Penryn Collection. Photographer: Unknown

Background imageLabour Collection: Transporting granite blocks for King Alfreds statue to Penryn Station, Penryn, Cornwall. 1901

Transporting granite blocks for King Alfreds statue to Penryn Station, Penryn, Cornwall. 1901
Fowler traction engines 7974 and 9016 are pictured hauling blocks of granite from one of the Mabe quarries to Penryn Station, for onward transportation by train to Winchester, Hampshire

Background imageLabour Collection: Aneurin Bevan

Aneurin Bevan, also known as Nye Bevan (1897 - 1960), Welsh Labour politician. Minister of Health in the mid-20th century, responsible for the creation of the National Health Service

Background imageLabour Collection: Labour Party election posters and television speakers

Labour Party election posters and television speakers
Labour Party election posters and speakers for Labours series of five short television programmes in the run-up to the General Election of 8th October 1959 (which the Conservatives won)

Background imageLabour Collection: Coopers at work making wooden barrels

Coopers at work making wooden barrels
Four coopers hard at work in their workshop making traditional wooden barrels. Painting by Malcolm Greensmith

Background imageLabour Collection: Coal miners in shaft lift, South Wales

Coal miners in shaft lift, South Wales
Several coal miners with blackened faces stand in the shaft lift at the end of their shift in a coal mine in South Wales

Background imageLabour Collection: Coal mine in England, 1850s

Coal mine in England, 1850s
Removing coal in the Bradley mine, Staffordshire, England, 1850s. Hand-colored woodcut of a 19th century illustration

Background imageLabour Collection: The Jarrow March. The marchers left Jarrow on 5th October 1936

The Jarrow March. The marchers left Jarrow on 5th October 1936. They reached London on 31st October 1936 and they returned to Jarrow on 5th November 1936

Background imageLabour Collection: A China Clay Pit, Leswidden, Harold Harvey (1874-1941)

A China Clay Pit, Leswidden, Harold Harvey (1874-1941)
Oil on canvas, Newlyn School, 1920 or 1924. This painting shows the harsh, labour-intensive working conditions of a china clay pit

Background imageLabour Collection: The Clay Pit, Harold Harvey (1874-1941)

The Clay Pit, Harold Harvey (1874-1941)
Oil on canvas, Newlyn School, 1923. View of Leswidden China Clay Works near St Just. This painting shows the harsh, labour-intensive working conditions of a china clay pit

Background imageLabour Collection: Keir Hardie giving a speech

Keir Hardie giving a speech
Keir Hardie (1856-1915), founder of the Labour party, addressing suffragettes at a free speech meeting

Background imageLabour Collection: Jim Callaghan / Labour Pm

Jim Callaghan / Labour Pm
JAMES CALLAGHAN LORD CALLAGHAN of CARDIFF Labour Party leader and British Prime Minister (1976-79)

Background imageLabour Collection: Polkanuggo Quarry, Stithians, Cornwall. 1903-1904

Polkanuggo Quarry, Stithians, Cornwall. 1903-1904
A general view of Polkanuggo Quarry with steam traction engine BETA No 483 and workers posing for the camera. The traction engine was made around June 1885 by John Fowler of Leeds

Background imageLabour Collection: Medieval goldsmith at work

Medieval goldsmith at work
Workshop of Etienne Delaulne, a goldsmith in Paris, 1500s. Hand-colored woodcut reproduction of a 16th-century illustration

Background imageLabour Collection: Michael Foot

Michael Foot (1913-2010) British politician when he was the Labour Party candidate for Ebbw Vale, at the election caused by the death of Aneurin Bevan

Background imageLabour Collection: Salvation Army Social Campaign propaganda poster, London, c. 1910 (chromolitho)

Salvation Army Social Campaign propaganda poster, London, c. 1910 (chromolitho)
XND75970 Salvation Army Social Campaign propaganda poster, London, c.1910 (chromolitho) by English School, (20th century); Private Collection; (add.info.: In Darkest England and the Way Out)

Background imageLabour Collection: BOLSHEVIK MEETING, 1903. Vladimir Lenin at the Second Congress of the Marxist Russian

BOLSHEVIK MEETING, 1903. Vladimir Lenin at the Second Congress of the Marxist Russian Social Democratic Labour Party in 1903. Painting, 20th century

Background imageLabour Collection: Orange grove in California

Orange grove in California
California orange grove, 1890s. Hand-colored woodcut of a 19th-century illustration

Background imageLabour Collection: Miner riding drams, Tirpentwys Colliery, South Wales

Miner riding drams, Tirpentwys Colliery, South Wales
A miner riding a journey of drams (coal trucks) at Tirpentwys Colliery near Pontypool in South Wales. Date: 1910

Background imageLabour Collection: Farmers Ploughing a field on Lealholm Hall Farm, Whitby. c. 1889 (photo)

Farmers Ploughing a field on Lealholm Hall Farm, Whitby. c. 1889 (photo)
3091121 Farmers Ploughing a field on Lealholm Hall Farm, Whitby. c.1889 (photo) by Sutcliffe, Frank Meadow (1853-1941); Private Collection; (add.info)

Background imageLabour Collection: National Union, Gas worker and General Labourers, 1889 (colour litho)

National Union, Gas worker and General Labourers, 1889 (colour litho)
XCF272232 National Union, Gas worker and General Labourers, 1889 (colour litho) by English School, (19th century); Private Collection; English, out of copyright

Background imageLabour Collection: GWR navvies, Treffgarne, Pembrokeshire, South Wales

GWR navvies, Treffgarne, Pembrokeshire, South Wales
A group of ten Great Western Railway navvies working on the Treffgarne railway at Nant Y Coy, Pembrokeshire, Dyfed, South Wales

Background imageLabour Collection: Welsh women road builders, South Wales

Welsh women road builders, South Wales
A group of twenty Welsh women road builders in Pembrokeshire, Dyfed, South Wales, holding their spades. They built the road to Hook in 1903-4 to facilitate transport to the colliery

Background imageLabour Collection: Keir Hardie addressing suffragettes at Trafalgar Square

Keir Hardie addressing suffragettes at Trafalgar Square
Keir Hardie (1856-1915), founder of the Labour party, addressing suffragettes at a free speech meeting in 1908 - Emmeline Pankhurst (1858-1928) and Elizabeth Wolstenholme Elmy (1834-1913)

Background imageLabour Collection: Horseshoer. Coloured engraving (19th c. )

Horseshoer. Coloured engraving (19th c. )
Horseshoer. Coloured engraving (19th c.)

Background imageLabour Collection: Glass factory workers in Britain, 1800s

Glass factory workers in Britain, 1800s
Manufacturing glass at a flint-glass factory, Great Britain, 1800s. Hand-colored engraving of a 19th-century illustration

Background imageLabour Collection: Logging in Wisconsin, 1800s

Logging in Wisconsin, 1800s
Hauling logs with a horse-drawn sledge in northern Wisconsin, 1880s. Hand-colored woodcut of a 19th-century illustration

Background imageLabour Collection: Man at work, Dinorwig Slate Quarry, North Wales

Man at work, Dinorwig Slate Quarry, North Wales
A man at work, 150 feet up on the main face of Dinorwig (or Dinorwic) Slate Quarry, near Llanberis, North Wales

Background imageLabour Collection: King George VI and Clement Attlee, Buckingham Palace, 1945

King George VI and Clement Attlee, Buckingham Palace, 1945
Photograph of King George VI (1895-1952) and Clement Attlee, 1st Earl Attlee, (1883-1967) in the grounds of Buckingham Palace, 1945

Background imageLabour Collection: Halifax Workhouse 1901

Halifax Workhouse 1901
A birdseye view of the workhouse infirmary at Halifax, Yorkshire

Background imageLabour Collection: The Lighthouse of Newlyn, Cornwall, 1893 (oil on canvas)

The Lighthouse of Newlyn, Cornwall, 1893 (oil on canvas)
3327178 The Lighthouse of Newlyn, Cornwall, 1893 (oil on canvas) by Forbes, Stanhope Alexander (1857-1947) ; 290x225 cm; Manchester Art Gallery

Background imageLabour Collection: Saint Bonaventure (San Bonaventura) (1217-1274) receiving the purple cardinalice A high

Saint Bonaventure (San Bonaventura) (1217-1274) receiving the purple cardinalice A high
JLJ4600203 Saint Bonaventure (San Bonaventura) (1217-1274) receiving the purple cardinalice A high official of the Vatican brings the cardinals bar to the monk occupies the menagery activities in

Background imageLabour Collection: A glamorous female model with her trusty Goblin Teasmade

A glamorous female model with her trusty Goblin Teasmade
A stylish female model wakes up fresh-faced and ready now to face the day thanks to a few sips from a hearty brew prepared by her faithful bedside Goblin Teasmade. How Delicious! Date: 1960s

Background imageLabour Collection: Photos on piano, Lloyd Georges farm at Churt, Surrey

Photos on piano, Lloyd Georges farm at Churt, Surrey
Photos on the piano, Lloyd Georges farm at Churt, Surrey. On the back row, l-r: Eleftherios Venizelos, Lloyd George with Prince of Wales (future Edward VIII), General Foch

Background imageLabour Collection: Riverboats at Shreveport, Louisiana, 1870s

Riverboats at Shreveport, Louisiana, 1870s
Stevedores loading barrels at the Red River levee at Shreveport, Louisiana, 1870s. Hand-colored woodcut of a 19th-century illustration

Background imageLabour Collection: Apprentice carpenter

Apprentice carpenter
Young carpenters apprentice planing a block of wood, 1800s. Hand-colored woodcut of a 19th-century illustration

Background imageLabour Collection: Bakers at their trade in the late Middle Ages

Bakers at their trade in the late Middle Ages
Bakers of York, showing their guild ordinances, England, 1590s. Hand-colored 19th-century woodcut reproduction of an earlier illustration

Background imageLabour Collection: Miners and owner, Hook Colliery, Pembrokeshire, South Wales

Miners and owner, Hook Colliery, Pembrokeshire, South Wales
A group of men at Hook Colliery, near Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire, South Wales. They are the current shift of miners plus the owner, standing near a wooden headframe connected to a mineshaft

Background imageLabour Collection: Portrait photograph of James Keir Hardie

Portrait photograph of James Keir Hardie. Scottish socialist and labour leader

Background imageLabour Collection: The Forge, 1859 (engraving)

The Forge, 1859 (engraving)
XJF425395 The Forge, 1859 (engraving) by Sharples, James (1825-93); Private Collection; English, out of copyright

Background imageLabour Collection: James Keir Hardie / Postcd

James Keir Hardie / Postcd
JAMES KEIR HARDIE British labour leader and politician

Background imageLabour Collection: Interior of the Forge, 1837 (oil on canvas)

Interior of the Forge, 1837 (oil on canvas)
XIR154717 Interior of the Forge, 1837 (oil on canvas) by Parran, Rosine (fl.1831-39); 65x53 cm; Musee des Beaux-Arts, Angers, France; French, out of copyright

Background imageLabour Collection: Oxytocin hormone crystals, PLM C016 / 7196

Oxytocin hormone crystals, PLM C016 / 7196
Oxytocin. Polarised light micrograph (PLM) of crystals of the female hormone oxytocin. In women this hormone is secreted naturally by the pituitary gland

Background imageLabour Collection: A Reader in cigar factory, Tampa, Fla. He reads books and ne

A Reader in cigar factory, Tampa, Fla. He reads books and newspapers at top of his voice all day long. This is all the education many of these workers receive



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"Labour: A Journey of Struggle, Solidarity, and Strength" Labour has been the driving force behind societal progress throughout history. From the visionary Aneurin Bevan who championed universal healthcare to the dedicated coopers crafting wooden barrels, their tireless efforts have shaped our world. In 1936, the resolute marchers embarked on the iconic Jarrow March, a symbol of working-class unity and resilience in the face of adversity. Meanwhile, deep underground in South Wales' coal mines, brave miners descended into shaft lifts with unwavering determination to fuel industrial growth. Transporting us back to England's coal mines in the 1850s reveals an era where labourers endured unimaginable hardships for meager wages. Yet amidst these struggles emerged a collective spirit that birthed movements like the Labour Party - its election posters and television speakers amplifying voices long suppressed. Artistic depictions such as Harold Harvey's "The Clay Pit" capture both beauty and hardship within British factories. Blow by blow, glassmakers in nineteenth-century Britain transformed molten material into exquisite creations while enduring harsh conditions. Witnessing a miner riding drams at Tirpentwys Colliery or Welsh women road builders constructing pathways through South Wales showcases how diverse roles within labour contribute to community development. Even further west lies Polkanuggo Quarry in Cornwall; here workers tirelessly extracted China clay from Leswidden pit under challenging circumstances. Throughout time and across industries, one common thread remains - labour embodies strength born out of necessity, and is this indomitable spirit that propels humanity forward against all odds. So let us honor those who have labored before us and continue striving for a future where every worker is valued for their contribution towards building a more just society.