The First International
The International Working Men’s Association (IWMA), later to be known as the First International, was founded on 28 September 1864 at St Martin’s Hall in London. Despite the fact that it only existed for 12 years, it had an enormous influence on the world working class and anticapitalist movement. It was the first organisation which consciously set out to organise the working class into a worldwide force struggling against capitalism for its own emancipation.
Though it was mainly concentrated in Europe, many labour movements in north and south America owe their origins directly to the IWMA and its militants, many of whom emigrated after the defeat of the Paris Commune in 1871. All future internationals claimed a historic link and debt to the First International and most recognised Karl Marx’s role in its leadership.
Articles on the History of the First International available here