NORWEGIAN LABOUR MOVEMENT ARCHIVES AND LIBRARY
The Norwegian Labour Movement Archives and Library (Arbark) is a documentation
centre where you can find current and historical information about the
Norwegian and the international labour movements, and about the political
The institution was founded jointly by the Norwegian Labour Party (DNA)
and the Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions (LO) in 1908, and is
still owned by these two organisations. The Arbark is open to the public.
The archive collection also holds material from organisations and personalities
outside Arbeiderpartiet and LO.
As of 1972, Arbark has received government subventions, and our field
of responsibility has been established through a cooperation agreement
with the National Archival Services of Norway.
Arbark is a member of the International Association of Labour History
The library is open to the public. Most books are available for lending.
Borrowers outside Oslo should contact their local libraries in Norway
The greater part of the books deals with the Norwegian and the international
labour movements. In addition, the library holds material about, i.a.,
workers, working conditions, the women’s movement, economy, and
political and social conditions in general.
A particularly valuable part of the library consists of the large collection
of the labour movement’s own publications, such as periodicals,
brochures, programmes, anniversary publications and written minutes.
Most of this material is also available for lending, either directly
from us, or through the libraries’ distance lending services.
THE ARCHIVE COLLECTION
A great part of the archive collection is available without prior agreement.
You must, however, be able to give a valid reason for wanting to consult
The records of the left-wing political parties are the most used material.
In addition to the Norwegian Labour Party, this concerns first and foremost
the records of the Norwegian Communist Party (NKP) and the more recent
Socialist Left Party (SV). Arbark also holds the records of the German
Socialist Workers' Party (SAP) for the years 1933-37.
Another key part of the collection is the records of LO, from its founding
year in 1899, and of national unions and local unions affiliated to
LO. Several of these records go back to the 1880’ies.
The archive collection also includes the records of organisations which
in some way were affiliated to the labour movement or to the political
Left. This includes, for instance, the records of cultural organisations,
the women’s movement and solidarity organisations.
A fourth section of the archive collection is the records of labour
activists. This collection also includes the records of several prime
ministers and government members.
THE PHOTO COLLECTION
Arbark has a photo collection consisting of about 1.5 million pictures.
The photos cover the period from the 1870’ies up to until today
and show, inter alia, workplaces, production processes, social life,
trade union and political activities, and culture and leisure activities.
The larger part of the photo collection previously belonged to Arbeiderbladet,
the principal newspaper of the Labour Party.
Arbark’s banner collection and most of the poster collection are
available to the public as part of the photo collection.
Our location in Oslo
Arbeiderbevegelsens arkiv og bibliotek
+47 22 69 33 00
+47 95 36 90 62
Organisation no.: 984 052 332
15 - Sept. 15
16 - May 14
For deviating opening hours please check our site (www.arbark.no)
under "Åpningstider" (=opening hours)
Thursdays the doors close at 16, but it is possible to stay
until 18 by agreement
Link to our Norwegian site