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Environnements portuaires

 | 
Anne-Lise Piétri-Lévy
, 
John Barzman
, 
Éric Barré

Troisième partie. Métiers, Gestes, Techniques

Origins of comparative studies of dock labour 1870-1914

John Barzman

Texte intégral

  • 1 Baron Charles Gilles de Pelichy, Le régime du travail dans les principaux ports de mer de l’Europe, (...)
  • 2 Nijhof Erik in collaboration with Barzman John and Lovell John. Préactes du colloque “L’invention d (...)
  • 3 The project led to the publication of Davies Sam et al. (eds.), Dockworkers. International Explorat (...)

1About six years ago, as I was doing research on Channel and North Sea ports in the pre World War I period, I stumbled on a work by one Baron Charles Gillès de Pélichy entitled The Labour Regime of the Principal Ports of Europe, published in Belgium in 18991. My curiosity was further aroused a year later when working on a project comparing the «invention of trade unions» in Germany, France and Britain2. My task was to examine the birth of dockers’ unions between 1850 and 1914, and Gillès de Pélichy’s book appeared to be the only serious international comparative study of waterfront workers written in and about that formative period. In 1997, the International Institute for Social History’s (IISH) «Comparative Dock Labour project» began and gave me an incentive to investigate the matter further3. The IISH project centers on comparing dockers in a number of individual ports rather than on the historiography of international port studies, but the relevance of the latter to the former is obvious. The question I decided to ask was: why and how have international comparative studies of dock labour developed?

  • 4 Frank Broeze, «Militancy and Pragmatism An International Perspective on Maritime Labor 1870-1914», (...)
  • 5 The ILO directory, published in 1921, lists only nine international employers’ associations among w (...)
  • 6 See for instance, Bureau International du Travail, Conférence internationale des statisticiens du t (...)
  • 7 Smith Joseph Russell, Influence of the Great War upon Shipping, New York, 1919, and Salter J A., Al (...)

2The next step was to establish a tentative periodization. A remark in a review of research on international maritime labour by Frank Broeze provided me with a starting point4. Broeze noted that when the International Labour Office (ILO) was created in 1919, one of the economic activities on which it spent much time and adopted its first recommendations was that of the maritime world, first shipping, then port transport. Maritime employers and workers built international links and called for attention from international bodies earlier than their colleagues in many other trades5. With the creation of the ILO, comparative studies encompassed a broader geographical scope, used more rigorous definitions of categories, and marshalled far more substantial bodies of statistical data6. But the trend towards this more systematic approach was discernible already in 1914, just before the war broke out, and was clearly present in Allied military and naval planning in 1917 and 19187. The year 1914 therefore seems to represent a turning point not only for general history but also for comparative research on dock labour.

  • 8 A typology and update of comparative social historical studies of all types may be found in Dumouli (...)

3This paper covers the first period, approximately 1870 to 1914, when studies of various aspects of port management and general labour legislation emerged, and paved the way for more rigorous and wider investigations, more specifically focused on harbour labour, that were characteristic of the 1914-1960 period. I will try to identify the process which led to the production of international comparative studies of dock labour, and to classify its various strains according to the social demand and institutions through which they arose8.

1. Method and sources

4My first problem was to select the books, reports and other publications that could be classified as “comparative studies of port labour”, or, given the scarcity or non-existence of such titles in the early period, as comparative studies of port management or of labour in all professions, which served in fact as the foundation for the former, and included, in some cases, a digression on dock labour. Comparisons of ports in the same country (or in the case of colonial empires, under the sway of the same state) were eliminated, as were comparisons of primarily fishing, military, leisure and refuge ports. Studies of ports in one country with explicit or implicit comparative references to the ports of other countries were numerous, and were selected on a relatively subjective basis. Some studies, which mentioned ports in different countries without a real effort at comparison were also included. The relatively arbitrary nature of the sample compelled me to renounce any attempt at quantitative analysis. Instead, I examined the authors, titles, tables of contents, in some cases the subject matter itself, the scientific tools and methods used, and the range of ports compared, to draw qualitative conclusions.

5The evidence was drawn mainly from library catalogues, that is card files, inventories, and CD-ROMs. The two centers where the most thorough research was conducted were the Bibliothèque Nationale de France and the Bibliothèque de l’Ecole nationale des Ponts et Chaussées, in the Paris region. Both contain primarily books published in France. The former contains also a sprinkling of books published in other countries while the latter has a substantial collection of foreign titles on port management as this was considered one of the specialties of the institution. To try to combat the French-centered bias of my research, I conducted some modest searches in the data bases on CD-ROM of the British Library, Library of Congress and Bibliothèque royale de Belgique. But even then, knowing only English and the Romance languages, I was led to overlook books written in the languages of important shipping nations such as Germany, Holland and Scandinavia, not to mention Japan.

6The terms around which I performed searches included variations on ports, harbours, dock, dockers, cargo, shipping, maritime, transport, labour legislation, workers and trade unions, and their translation in French. Sometimes, one book would contain references to many other books. Government and industry reports prided themselves on being up-to-date and citing recent work, even when conducted in other countries. I therefore suppose that the core of the subject matter is reflected in the publications found by these various methods, while remaining conscious that the sample is weighted in favour of works which came to the attention of French observers.

7I did not find any international comparative study of dock labour before the late 1890s, after which date a trickle of such publications appears and slowly and gradually becomes a distinct genre. The works examined can be classified into four categories, each of which tended to evolve over time:

  1. reference works which list ports but do not compare them,

  2. casual or narrow comparisons of ports,

  3. elaborate comparisons of ports, and

    • 9 See a selection of classified titles in the Appendix to this article.

    studies of labour legislation, a section of which dealt with ports9.

2. Reference works

8These include a wide variety of guides to ports of the world, dictionaries of harbour terminology and bibliographies of port studies.

9The guides to ports are organized either by country, or, more often, according to the major seaports encountered by a ship along a particular sea route. Sometimes, they include all the ports of a country, or group of countries; at other times, they encompass the entire world. They offer information on the one hand about the accessibility, water depth, tides, pilot services and other matters useful to navigation, and, on the other hand, about the fees charged for importing various products, time spent occupying wharf space, the use of lifting equipment and cargo handling, and other matters useful to commerce. The relevance of such guides to this study is that most contain information about the different phases of loading and unloading cargo, and their cost. This makes possible a first approximation of the relative burden of cargo-handling to shippers and merchants, compared to other port expenses, and provides some indications on dock labour organization. An example of the navigational approach, with obvious military implications, is a book compiled by the United States Office of Naval Intelligence, Coaling, Docking and Repairing Facilities of the Ports of the World, on its fifth edition in 1909. The commercial angle is found in G. D. Urquhart, Dues and charges on shipping in foreign ports. A manual of reference, published in London and already on its fifth edition in 1883.

  • 10 Association internationale permanente des congres de navigation, Dictionnaire technique illustré. C (...)

10Dictionaries are another form of reference. A full study of specialized dictionaries, as a foundation for comparative work, would be useful but could not be undertaken in the framework of this article. Dictionaries of maritime terms have existed for a long time. What we found was the beginning of an effort to produce such a dictionary in several instalments, the volume about harbours being finally published in 193810? This multilingual illustrated dictionary by Charles Laroche is interesting for several reasons. First, it was produced by an international body, the Permanent International Association of Navigation Congresses, which stabilized around 1900, and about which more will be said later. Second, it reflects the concerns of a period in which the major emphasis in the field of improving the performance of ports, was on civil engineering rather than on labour organization or cargo-handling technology. This is why the chief author is an engineer, trained in the French school of Civil Engineering, the Ponts et Chaussées, and a former employee of the civil-engineering division of the French steel-magnate Schneider. Third, it expresses well one of the difficulties of international comparisons, that of language and terminology. Various units of measurements are not the same in different countries, ports and periods; but more importantly, there is no agreement on what it is important to measure and whether it should be given a new “streamlined” name. In port operations, for instance, should one measure the tonnage of ships or of the merchandise, the length of quays or the surface of the basins and adjacent sheds, the number of dockers per ship or the tonnage moved per docker per day, a concept which only appears much later? Laroche struggled with the varying definitions of the term “dock” in Britain, France and the United States. Here is a sample of Laroche’s attempted explanation:

11“Basin and Dock: A Basin constructed for the purpose of transfer of cargoes, etc., and surrounded by quay walls is commonly known as a Dock. Dock is especially applied to basins closed by gates.

  • 11 Ibid.

12Strictly speaking Dock should only be applied to wet docks closed by gates, dry-docks and floating docks, but it is more generally used in the wider sense of an equivalent to an open or closed basin as above”11.

13He then points out that the French word “Dock” is discussed under the entry for the French word “basin” and that in New York, the piers at which vessels berth are called docks. Fortunately, for additional clarity, one may refer to illustration number 134. If “dock” is difficult to define and translate, because of different usages in different regions of England and America, and changes over time, the problem is compounded for the worker who labours in or around a dock. Is he a docker? Is he the only true docker? The very fact, that these questions arise, shows that comparative work is under way. Similar studies of the appearance of multilingual dictionaries of labour legislation and port slang would be useful.

  • 12 See Bensel J. A. and others, «Port Administration and Harbour Facilities of the Principal Ports of (...)
  • 13 For a survey of the AAPA, see «AAPA: the first 85 years», an official history at the organisation’s (...)
  • 14 Pradelle Jean (compilé par), Association Internationale Permanente des Congrès de Navigation, Fleuv (...)

14A third type of reference work is the bibliography of publications on ports. Here too, our sample only permits limited conclusions. We have found a few titles, which seem to indicate that the interest in ports shifts from the status of subsection of bibliographies on shipping and shipbuilding, to independent work exclusively about ports, in which waterfront labour has a small place12. This seems to reflect a shift from an interest in the physical construction of harbours, to an interest in the specialized management thereof. In the United States, for example, harbour officers founded an American Association of Port Authorities, which published the relevant bibliography13. In 1912, the regular publication of a bibliography of ports with a truly international dimension began, under the auspices again of the Peimanent International Association of Navigation Congresses14.

15Thus the appearance and evolution of specialized reference publications seems to indicate a growing interest in port management, as distinct from navigation, shipping, commerce and port finances and construction. Harbour labour though is afforded either very little or no attention, as a factor in the fees to be paid to stevedores, or the efficient operation of equipment.

3. Casual or narrow comparisons of ports

16The emergence of these specialized reference publications corresponds to the increasing number of comparative insights in writing on ports. We have distinguished a category of works about ports in different countries, which are not yet elaborate comparisons of ports or port labour of the type produced by international organizations, but which go beyond the mere juxtaposition of information. They isolate specific aspects of harbour life and make implicit or explicit comparisons. There are many such works, usually giving some attention to the situation of longshoremen, and sometimes even to their trade unions.

  • 15 Stephens George W. and Cowle Frederick W., Report on British and Continental Ports, with a view to (...)

17It is in this category that the French-centered bias of our study appears most clearly for I have found numerous studies of French harbours by French writers published in France, with implicit comparisons of French ports to non-French ports, usually English, as well as quite a few studies of non-French ports by French writers published in France. By contrast, I have found only a few examples of similar concerns and inquiries about “how the others are doing it” in Canadian, English, Belgian and American port studies, such as the book by George W. Stephens, President, and Frederick C. Cowle, Chief Engineer of the Harbour Commissioners of Montreal, entitled Report on British and Continental Ports, with a view to the development of the port of Montreal and Canadian transportation, published in 190015. Does the small number of such studies found in my search reflect the limitations of my investigation, or does it correspond to a lesser interest in comparisons by countries other than France? The answer to this question will have to await further inquiries into the publishing activity of other countries.

18Despite the paucity of our findings by non-French authors, their works reveal a mechanism similar to that which led French authors to seek to compare ports in various countries: the recognition of an advance by a particular port or country in the field of harbour construction or port management, with a consequent commercial advantage, and by inference, recognition of the retardation of another port or country in that field.

19For example the survey, by Adam W. Kirkaldy, British Shipping. Its History, Organization and Importance, mentioned other countries to highlight the still real, albeit fragile, superiority of the British merchant marine and ports. By contrast, the bulk of French comparative writing was concerned with the real or alleged retardation of French harbours, often with an implication that the French government ought to increase its subsidies to ports. Occasionally, some investigations seem motivated mainly by a serene, scientific desire to learn from the experience of others and compare different methods of harbour management. It should be noted that France, in the period considered possessed one of the five great merchant marines in the world (along with Britain, the United States, Germany and Japan), but was steadily losing rank, and that French civil engineering companies were world leaders in railroad, canal and port construction (the Suez Canal being the showcase of French know-how).

  • 16 Barzman John et Morel Philippe, «Identité de la ville-port et acteurs de la vie portuaire: Le Havre (...)

20The question, which led French experts into multiple inquiries into the operation of British and other European ports was the apparent declining competitive performance of French ports compared to large British and Continental North Sea ports (Liverpool, London, Antwerp, Rotterdam, Amsterdam, Bremen, and especially Hamburg). Proposed solutions included changing the customs schedule, improving railroad connections, lowering freight rates by rail, deepening access channels, widening basins, and introducing more cargo-handling machinery. Reducing the number of dockers or lowering their wages was apparently not a major concern until the final years of this study. Various economic interests had opposing views on the right solution and the financial means to that effect. For instance, railroad companies opposed lower freight rates, while merchants in the largest and most successful ports wished to finance port development with loans issued by their own Chambers of Commerce16.

  • 17 See Congrès des ports de commerce tenu à la Rochette du 22 au 25 août 1909, Paris: Syndicat de la p (...)
  • 18 Laporte Pierre, Etude sur l’infériorité des ports de commerce français. Le Havre: Havre-Eclair, 191 (...)
  • 19 Comité central des armateurs de France, Circulaires du Comité central des armateurs de France, “La (...)

21In France, this debate led to many comparative port studies. A first set was sponsored by private interest groups such as the Association of Port Labour Employers, Congress of Commercial Seaports, Central Committee of Ship Owners, National Congress of Public Works, or groups of the users of a particular port17. One such by Pierre Laporte is unabashedly entitled Essay on the Inferiority of French Commercial Seaports. Some of these studies are the result of the author’s journeys to other ports. Others are based on correspondence between individuals or organizations18. Attention shifts from physical issues of design and technology to labour issues as we come into the twentieth century, as demonstrated, for example, by the circulars of the Central Committee of French Ship Owners which reproduced and analyzed the actions of the wages of workers handling cargo and shipping coal in 191219.

  • 20 Commission constituee par arrete ministeriel du 31 Aout 1882 sous la presidence de Felix Faure, Fra (...)
  • 21 Franqueville Charles de (chargé de mission du Ministère des Travaux Publics), Rapport sur la législ (...)

22Another group of studies is the product of repeated, almost regular, government inquiries, drawing on the findings of officials sent to other countries on extensive and lengthy fact-finding missions. In 1882, a Commission headed by Félix Faure, future President of the French Republic, investigated the comparative performance of French Channel ports20. At that time, it could already marshal three recent substantial reports on British, Belgian and Dutch harbours, focusing on legislation and construction. It concluded its work with a comparative table detailing findings in about ten categories of data for each port, though failing to use exactly the same criteria and measurements in all cases21.

  • 22 Colson Clément et Roume E., L’organisation financière des ports maritimes de commerce en Angleterre(...)

23In 1888, the French Ministry of Public Works sent Clément Colson to Britain for a full-fledged inquiry into the financing of British port operations22. Colson was a brilliant economist and engineer specialized in transport economics, and a high civil servant in the French state. He began by noting various difficulties of his task, observations which apply to comparative studies in general. The London-based Board of Trade could not provide information on the work of local administrations scattered along Britain and Ireland’s shores, because it did not control these bodies and did not centralize their annual reports, quite a surprising situation for a French functionary. Specific laws were made by Parliament, and provisional authorizations issued on an ad hoc basis, for each port. Railroad companies, which owned some British harbours, claimed the information requested was mixed into the general accounts of railroads, and could not be isolated and transmitted. As a result, Colson engaged in a painstaking port-by-port collection of data and analysis, laced with comparisons to French equivalents, including in the area of dock labour. He laboured to reduce data of different origins to a common denominator. His book ended with an overall comparison to France, and an index of all British and Irish ports. Colson’s work illustrates the progress of comparative port studies: they are trusted to an expert in the area studied, who conducts on-site discussions and collection of data, reworks the data, attempts to obtain complete coverage of all ports, and presents standardized results. Colson remained a keen observer of the international port scene for another forty years.

  • 23 Vernaux René, L’industrie des transports maritimes au XIXème siècle et au commencement du XXème siè (...)

24After the 1890s, general surveys of maritime affairs included at least a brief passage devoted to the different types of labour relations. In 1903, René Vereaux, a legal adviser to the French ship owners’ federation, granted loaders and unloaders a few pages in his two-volume book on the Maritime Transport Industry in the Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Century, along with pilots and brokers, in a subsection entitled «Auxiliaries», in a chapter on personnel, in volume II23. The passage is interesting because it reveals one of the fundamental reasons for the new interest in port labour. He noted that:

  • 24 Idem, pp. 140-141.

25“The question of the work force in ports has thus become crucial for the maritime transport industry, which can find itself momentarily paralyzed when, as a result of a strike, this work force is not to be found. There is a great variety of labour relations, depending on the port, in preparatory as well as complementary cargo-handling for ships, and almost everywhere one finds interesting organizations”24.

26He then briefly described the dockers of Marseille, London and Hamburg, but in an acknowledgment of the transitional nature of the situation, in which the issue was not yet old enough to be included fully in general surveys of maritime affairs, yet sufficiently important to deserve extensive study, he referred the reader to the study of dock labour by Belgian Baron Charles Gillès de Pélichy.

  • 25 For example, A. J. De Bray, Les installations maritimes comparées des ports de Liverpool et d’Anver (...)

27We should note that the late 1890s is also the moment when the interest in port labour stems not only from port interests, but from a general interest in labour which we shall discuss subsequently. Between 1890 and 1914, governments continued to produce comparative studies like Colson’s, while interest groups, mainly employers’ federations, improved their port-to-port or country-to-country comparisons25.

4. Towards more elaborate comparisons of broader scope

28But by the late 1890s, international conferences and even international organizations had formed and were beginning to provide the framework for another step forward. Between that time and 1914, we find a new type of port comparison broader in scope, more rigorous in its definitions, and which sometimes began to give more attention to dockers’ environment, local customs and trade unions.

  • 26 Gilles de Pelichy Baron Charles, op. cit. His other works include: Les industries à domicile en Bel (...)
  • 27 Antoine Révérend Père, Cours d’économie sociale, Paris, 1896.

29The pioneering work was that of Charles Gillès de Pélichy. From the notices published in his various books, we know that he was the descendant of an ancient Belgian noble lineage, practiced law, and taught moral and historical sciences at the University of Louvain. In 1899, he published two major studies of dockers, the first about Flemish ports, with background on their ancient history, the second a comparison of the contemporary labour systems in London, Liverpool, Hamburg, Bremen, Rotterdam, Le Havre, Marseille, Antwerp and a few other major ports of Europe26. Drawing inspiration from the Encyclical of Pope Leo XIII, De Rerum Novarum, citing the role of Cardinal Manning as a mediator in the great London dock strike of 1889, and counter posing the social philosophy of the Reverend Father Antoine to the free market ideology of Adam Smith, he stood in the tradition of Social Catholicism27. From the standpoint of method, he emphasized the importance of obtaining first-hand testimonies by actual witnesses, of multiple trips to the locations, both to study the existing scholarship and gather new documentation, and of confronting opposing viewpoints. He seems to have relied for his interviews in the various ports of Europe on the introductions provided by Belgian consuls, parish priests, executives of large shipping companies, and a few benevolent trade unionists who understood his commitment. Although the book is essentially composed of a series of chapters, each presenting the labour system of one port, it is preceded by several chapters outlining a typology of hiring systems, specialties, wage rates, the labour of women and children, employer associations and trade unions. In the part on wages, Gillès de Pélichy combines his findings in a comparative table of the average daily wage of employed workers for each category of port labourer, sometimes giving higher and lower estimates. Although he may have been influenced by international conferences held in Belgium around that time, Gillès de Pélichy did not write specifically for them.

30Except in his case, it seems that the real impetus for broader and more rigorous international comparisons of dock labour came from the various international organizations forming at that time. They responded to the obvious growing independence of dock labourers by directing their investigations in two directions: the first was an increased interest in studies of labour-saving machinery, equipment and management techniques (in addition to port design and construction, the earlier emphasis); the second was to forms of labour legislation which might eliminate crying abuses and sweeten industrial relations on the waterfront. Let us deal first with the international business organizations with an interest in ports, which appeared around that time.

  • 28 See «Statut secret pour la création d’une Shipping Federation Internationale. Privé et confidentiel (...)

31The first three employer groups to organize were firms of civil engineers, maritime lawyers, and ship owners. Civil engineers were central in the foundation of the Permanent International Association of Navigation Congresses in Brussels in 1885. Lawyers founded the International Maritime Committee, also in Brussels, in 1897. The English Shipping Federation launched an International Shipping Federation in 1909, based in London. Other professions interested in ports congregated around these three federations until they had sufficient numbers and distinct interests to form their own international associations at a later time. For instance, import-export merchants spearheaded the foundation of the International Chamber of Commerce in 1920, and much later in 1952, the first conference of what became the International Association of Ports and Harbours was held. Employers operating only in port transport or cargo-handling (that is essentially stevedores) seem to have represented too local an interest to organize at an international level. Most of these international bodies began as European federations, and gradually added American and Japanese affiliates. The International Shipping Federation was designed to harmonize working conditions in the countries served by major shipping companies, but also, according to a section of its statutes reproduced by the International Transport Workers Federation, to weaken unions and strikes, and its work seems to have been rather secretive at first28. We have not yet found any other documentation on port labour circulated or published by this International Shipping Federation. The International Maritime Committee was interested at that time in questions of responsibility for damage to goods shipped by sea.

  • 29 The early history of the congresses is described by Barlatier De Mas F., Souvenirs de neuf congrès (...)
  • 30 Guerard A., Notes sur l’exploitation des ports de commerce, leur aménagement, leur outillage, Londr (...)

32The organization for which I have found the most publications is the Permanent International Association of Navigation Congresses. Its origins go back to 1885 when it began as a coalition of national federations of civil engineers interested in canals, rivers, bridges and all other aspects of inland waterways. In 1894, at The Hague, it merged with the Congresses of Maritime Civil Engineering Works, and gradually acquired a permanent character29. Port labour did not appear directly in its deliberations, but indirectly in the increasing number of studies about the cost of operating ports and the virtues of various machinery. Attention focused on port design, especially the configuration of basins and piers, which allowed for the introduction of enclosed docks, warehouses, railroad tracks, cranes, conveyor belts and aspirators for coal and grain30. But this equipment was expensive; if operating costs could be kept down with the old technology, ship owners and merchants would rather avoid the added burden. On the other hand, civil engineering firms and machine manufacturers are more eager to modernize. To justify the expense involved in this new equipment, and to evaluate the amount of capital that it would be necessary to raise and reward, the exact cost of cargo handling labour was studied in greater detail.

  • 31 Corthell E. L., Results of the investigation into the Cost of Ports and their Operation, Bruxelles: (...)

33The best example of this sort of comparative study is Elmer Lawrence Corthell’s Results of the Investigation into the Cost of Ports and their Operation, published in 190731. Corthell was a consulting engineer based in New York, who had previously been involved with studies of the trarisisthmic canal (before it became the Panama Canal) and the building and management of the ports of Santos, Brazil, and Buenos Aires and Rosario, Argentina. He served as one of the representatives of the U.S. government at the navigation congresses. In 1906, the congress asked him to state the cost of operating ports, and what percentage of the total income of ports it represented. The question was motivated at once by potential investors in port building and equipment who wished to know how much profit they could expect, and for how many years, and by ship owners and merchants concerned that port operations were costing too much and cutting into the profits which they could expect from shipping and trading. The labour cost of cargo handling was one of the expenses investigated by Corthell.

  • 32 Factors considered were: 1) cost of operation of different sections of the port, 2) shipping tonnag (...)
  • 33 Idem, p. 3.

34The pamphlet produced in 1907 is remarkable in several ways. The investigation covered seventeen ports, mainly in Europe, but also in the Americas. The development of each port is measured by the same standardized criteria32. Findings are summarized in graphs and tables, showing for example that Le Havre, Bristol and Newcastle lost rank, while Antwerp and Hamburg progressed. Corthell did not travel to the seventeen ports included in the study, but used his address book, acquired probably through business contacts and the international congresses. He was responsible for determining the criteria to be chosen, and defining the mathematical formulas to be applied to the raw data, but he hired a certain Monsieur Viard, in Paris, to send the letters, compile the data and write a preliminary report. It is interesting to note that Corthell found the same difficulties in 1907, which Colson had encountered in 1889. For instance, he asked the U.S. government in Washington for help, but was told that obtaining the desired information was «like chasing a rainbow» as «the data was not to be had»33.

  • 34 Idem, p. 5.
  • 35 Idem, p. 9.

35Corthell concluded that the average cost of operation of a port was 37% of gross revenue, but that if a port was well built, with a fair traffic, and, a factor which seems decisive to Corthell, «operated by a private company as a purely commercial and business enterprise» it could be lowered to 30 percent34. Corthell criticized French port management, which was partially controlled by the state: «The case of French ports alone shows that it is useless to dream of ‘le bien général’ (the general good)»35.

  • 36 See for instance the works of Barney, and Meyer cited in note 9, and Smith and Salter in note 5, wh (...)

36Comparative economic studies such as Corthell’s deal with the issue of dock labour, and quantify certain aspects of its cost. They represent a step toward comparisons of broader scope and more precise measurements. These and the other port studies mentioned earlier were used during the First World War to reorganize ports, at least temporarily, to load and unload the sea-borne supplies of Allied armies in Europe36. The British, French, Italian, Japanese, Russian and US merchant marines and navies easily dominated their German, Austrian and Turkish counterparts. The situation was obviously ripe for an international standardization of port practices.

37It is interesting to note that dockers’ trade unions, whether local, national or international, were almost totally absent from this sort of early discussion, calculations and planning. They only reacted after the equipment was actually put into operation. By that time, it was of course too late to make substantive alternative proposals, as the entire port design and machinery had become a part of the landscape, an objective factor, and were widely considered a manifestation of the irreversible march of progress. Rather than port planning, dockers’ unions became interested in protective labour legislation, international standards and the comparative studies they required.

5. Comparative studies and international labour legislation

38While port economics was leading to a growing focus on management and the work force, another discipline began to include dock labour in its ambit, that of general investigations designed to promote labour legislation, produced first in the framework of the national political scene, and later in the international arena. There is a vast body of literature on 19th-century inquiries into the conditions of the working class, from the pioneering pamphlets of medical doctors, journalists and labour advocates to the careful studies submitted to Parliamentary committees or produced by labour inspectors and other officials and consultants of Labour Departments of national governments. The growth of national protective legislation in different countries led to a desire for comparison. This was after all, the epoch of Werner Sombart’s Why Is There No Socialism in America? However, dock labour was not the first or main category of labour, which attracted investigators, and was, for a long time, not among those subjected to comparative analysis. The first groups of labourers to be surveyed and protected by law were children and women, coal miners, and victims of clearly occupational diseases.

  • 37 Festy Octave, «Les unions de dockers», in Paul de Rousiers (avec la collaboration de Carbonnel, Fes (...)

39Implicitly comparative studies of dock labour in a country other than the observer’s, from the point of view of the condition of the working classes, began to appear in the late 1890s. We have found a few examples of such studies. In 1897, Octave Festy, a French labour sociologist, published a study of the various British dockers unions, as one of the chapters of a book on British Trade Unionism in general, by a man who became a leader of the French employers. The general editor, Paul de Rousiers, intended to describe a system of labour relations which made possible the isolation of disruptive elements and collaboration between reasonable employers and trade unions, for the benefit of the French public37. Festy examines the differences between London and Liverpool dockers, and delves in great detail into their wages, living conditions, trade union affiliations and beliefs.

  • 38 Enquiry into the working-class rents, housing retail prices, and rates of wages, in the principal i (...)
  • 39 Villard H. G., Workmen’s Accident Compensation and Insurance in Belgium, Norway, Sweden, Denmark an (...)
  • 40 See the article of the Comité central des armateurs de France cited in note 15.

40Another more ambitious study was launched by the British Board of Trade in 1903. Its object was to compare wages, rents and housing retail prices in different cities of Britain, Belgium, Germany and France38. Among the cities studied were port cities where families of dockers represented a large fraction of the population. The study took several years to complete and was commented upon in French administrative publications, demonstrating the extent to which governments had become attentive to the labour situation and protective legislation in other countries. Another reason for comparative labour studies is exemplified in three books published in the United States in 1913 and 1914. A public debate on the extension of laws making the compensation of workmen injured in job-related accidents compulsory, an issue of great concern to longshoremen, was underway. In this context, a certain a certain H. G. Villard wrote three pamphlets comparing workmen’s accident compensation and insurance in Belgium, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Italy, France, Holland, Switzerland and Germany39. Finally, employers associations dealing with ports, such as the French ship owners federation, began regular coverage of labour legislation in other countries that affected the cargo-handling industry40.

  • 41 Follows John W., Antecedents of the International Labour Organization, Oxford, Clarendon, 1951.
  • 42 Seilhac Léon de, Congrès de la législation du travail tenu à Bruxelles du 27 au 30 septembre 1897, (...)

41Parallel to this thirst for knowledge about the conditions of the working class in other countries, international organizations dedicated to that subject began to develop. International conferences, beginning in 1890, were designed at first simply to enhance mutual knowledge of labour law and labour conditions, but gradually acquired more permanent organs and ventured to propose international standards to be adopted and enforced by all civilized states. Their prehistory lies of course in the International Exhibitions and Fairs, which often hosted a scientific component and exchanges of views on labour, as well as in the competition of the various Socialist and Labour Internationals41. To our knowledge, the official international conference, which began the tradition which eventually produced the International Labour Organization, was held in Berlin, in 1890. Kaiser Wilhelm, who apparently felt that his Empire would appear in a good light before the public opinion of the civilized world, as the world leader in social legislation, hosted the meeting. The topic assigned to the delegates was an exchange of views on the regulation of work in industrial establishments and mines, particularly concerning children, young workers, women and miners, a definition which excluded dock labour from consideration. Nor was dock labour mentioned in the proceedings of the next two meetings held in 1897 in Brussels and Zurich42. Out of these conferences was formed the International Association for Labour Legislation in 1897, and in 1901, an International Labour Office headquartered in Basel, which published regular comparative studies of labour conditions and legislation.

  • 43 Follows, op. cit.

42By that time, several international conferences on topics related to labour were summoned in various capitals of Europe: an International Association on Unemployment in Milano, and a Permanent Commission for the Study of Occupational Diseases, in 1906; a Permanent International Committee on Social Insurance in The Hague, and an International Home Work Bureau in Brussels in 1910, and an International Institute of Statistics in Vienna in 191343.

43They were attended by social workers, labour inspectors, clerics of various religions, journalists, professors of law and sociology, advocates of working class and feminist movements, and occasionally more or less enlightened employers. Only around 1912 did a significant interest in dock labour appear. One of the explanations for this delay may lie in the peculiar ideology that saw labour legislation as a means of protecting only the weakest among the weak. At the Brussels Congress in 1897, for instance, an open-ended question was put on the agenda: should adult male workers be protected? particularly as relates to the duration of work?

  • 44 Terwagne Paul, «Sur le travail des ouvriers du port: Anvers», and Ronse E., «Sur le travail des ouv (...)

44In 1912, the delegates’ assembly of the International Association of Labour Legislation decided to place on the agenda of the next conference the question of the protection of dock labour, and to solicit studies on the topic. We therefore find a number of reports on dock workers in Belgium, Spain and Italy published in 1913 and 1914, in the framework of this proposed comparative study44. This research was interrupted by the war but became a major focus of the International Labour Organization in the 1920s. By that time, dockers’ trade unions had an active role at the international level.

45Before the outbreak of the World War, dockers’ unions had begun to establish national federations, sometimes in coalitions with other transport workers. The first contacts for an International Transport Workers Federation, known as the ITF, had even been established rather early, in 1897. The few publications of the ITF, which we were able to examine indicate an interest in strengthening solidarity between workers of ports along the path of the main sea routes, and imposing universal labour standards for port labour. However, in terms of international comparative studies, the evidence we found shows that the ITF did not possess the necessary discipline and administrative efficiency to conduct a comprehensive survey, and was only able to begin to compare the conditions and wages of tramway workers and railroad workers.

46To summarize, by 1914, the efforts to develop international labour legislation based on a sound knowledge of the situation in different countries, were only just beginning to be extended to port labour.

Some conclusions

  • 45 Konvitz Josef W., «The Crisis of Atlantic Port Cities, 1880 to 1920», Comparative Studies in Societ (...)

47Returning to the overall view, this survey suggests in the first place that there were no real international comparative studies of dock labour until the pioneering work of 1899, and the systematic endeavor undertaken after 1912. Dock work as the link between the work of seamen and inland carriers had existed for a long time and expanded considerably first in England, then in other major commercial and industrial nations in the course of the 19th century. A question therefore follows both as to the reasons for the delay, and the reasons for the new interest between 1900 and 1914. The answer may lie in a slightly delayed recognition of the common social trends created by the industrialization of shipping, a phenomenon described by Josef W. Konvitz as «The Crisis of Atlantic Port Cities, 1880 to 1920”45.

48Secondly, our review of the literature indicates that international comparative studies of dock labour drew on two main sources, namely international comparative studies of harbour, and international comparative studies of labour legislation. By 1914, both had developed a certain sophistication: they encompassed a broader range of countries, developed common definitions and standards of measurements, and drew on the growing number of institutions for the collection of statistics. Yet they were still based essentially on what we would today call «north-north» comparisons. No writer seems to have been inclined to compare the labour legislation or port customs of San Francisco and Shanghai, Paris and Alexandria, London and Bombay. Finally, the ideological orientation of dockers and their unions were only very rarely mentioned.

49Thirdly, the difficulties found by those making comparisons, language barriers, travel limitations, dearth of comparable data, meant that international comparisons could only prosper in an arena of international intellectual exchange, which highlights the decisive importance of international organizations. The progress of port comparisons is obviously related to the stabilization and growth of the Permanent International Association of Navigation Congresses and other international maritime bodies, as that of labour comparisons is related to the regular production of the International Association for Labour Legislation and similar formations.

  • 46 The connection between the rise of comparative studies and the holding of international conferences (...)

50Finally, it is clear that the impulse to compare often says more about the «comparer» than about the society compared to his own. This is quite clear with port comparisons of national origins. French descriptions of British, German and Belgian ports reflect French anxiety about France’s loss of rank in the maritime world. But it is also true of comparisons of international origins, that is developed in the framework of international organizations46. The interest in the comparative performance of port equipment and management techniques reflects the concerns of the coalition of civil engineers and port investors. Likewise, the categories of workers studied initially by international protective legislation associations express the charitable approach, which still pervaded the field.

Bibliographie

*****

Types of studies out of which comparative dock labour studies formed. Selected titles

Guides, lists of ports, dictionaries, bibliographies

Association internationale permanente des congres de navigation, Dictionnaire technique illustré. Chapitre VII: Les Ports, sous la direction de Charles Laroche, 1938.

Barney W. J., Secretary of the American Association of Port Authorities (compiled by), Selected bibliography on ports and harbours. Their administration, laws, finance, equipment and engineering, New York, 1917. 144 pages.

Coaling, Docking and Repairing Facilities of the Ports of the World, Washington: Government Printing Office, 5th ed., 1909.239 pages. Office of naval intelligence.

Meyer Herman (compiled by), List of references on shipping and ship building, Washington: Government Printing Office, 1919.

Pradelle Jean, (compilé par). Association Internationale Permanente des Congrès de Navigation. Fleuves, Canaux et Ports. Notes bibliographiques 1907-10. Bruxelles: Société anonyme belge d’imprimerie, 1912, XXXI + 710 pages.

1911-1915, Bruxelles, AIPCN, 1920.

1916-1920, Bruxelles, AIPCN; 1924.

1921-1925, Bruxelles, Société anonyme belge d’imprimerie, s. d..

Urquhart G. D., Dues and charges on shipping in foreign ports. A manual of reference, London: G. Philip & Son, 5th ed., 1883.

Implicit, causal or narrow comparisons of ports

Association Des Employeurs de Main-d’œuvre Des Ports De France, Circulaires, Paris, 1907.

Annuaire, Paris, 1911-1939.

Colson Clément et Roume E., L’organisation financière des ports maritimes de commerce en Angleterre, Paris: Vve Charles Dunod, 1888.

Comité central des armateurs de France, Annuaire de la marine marchande. 1904 (I) et années suivantes, Paris, 1904 et années suivantes.

— Circulaires, Paris, plusieurs années. Tables tous les 50 numéros.

France. Ministère des travaux publics. Comité consultatif des chemins de fer. Enquête sur la situation des ports français de la Manche au point de vue de la concurrence avec les ports étrangers. Commission constituée par arrêté ministériel du 31 août 1882 sous la présidence de Félix Faure, Paris: Imprimerie nationale, 1883.

Congrès des ports de commerce tenu à La Rochelle du 22 au 25 août 1909, Paris: Syndicat de la presse maritime, 1909.105 pages.

Cordemoy de, Exploitation des ports maritimes, Paris: H. Dunod et E. Pinat, 1909.

De Bray A. J., Les installations maritimes comparées des ports de Liverpool et d’Anvers, 1906.

Desprez H., Rôle et importance de l’outillage des ports, Paris, Lahire, 1889.

Fleury Jules-Auguste, Société des ingénieurs civils. Congrès de navigation de Vienne. Communication de M. Fleury, juillet 1886, Paris: Chaix, 1886.

Franqueville Charles de (chargé de mission du Ministère des Travaux Publics), Rapport sur la législation anglaise sur les ports, Paris, 1874.

Huart Albin, Les ports de commerce français, Paris, Berger-Levrault, 1911.

Kirkaldy Adam Willis, British shipping. Its History, Organisation and Importance, London, Kegan Paul, Trench Trubner; 1914.655 pages.

Laporte Pierre, Etude sur l’infériorité des ports de commerce français, Le Havre, Havre Eclair, 1910.123 pages.

Ploc and Laroche (chargés de mission du Ministère des Travaux Publics), Rapport sur l’activité du service du port des localités anglaises, Paris, 1882.

Rousiers, Paul de, Les grandes industries modernes. IV. Les transports maritimes, Paris, Colin, 1924-1928.

Les grands ports de France: leur rôle économique, Paris, Colin, 1909.

Stephens George W. and Cowle Frederick W., Report on British and Continental Ports, with a view to the development of the port of Montreal and Canadian transportation, 1900.

Stoecklin and Laroche, Des ports maritimes considérés au point de vue de leur établissement et de leur profondeur. Rapport fait à la suite d’une mission en Belgique, en Hollande et en Angleterre, Boulogne, 1878 (nlle éd. 1880).

Economic comparative port studies

Association Internationale Permanente des Congrès de Navigation, Congrès international de navigation de... (série continue), Bruxelles, Secrétariat de l’AIPCN.

Association Internationale Permanente des Congrès de Navigation, Programmes des travaux, noms des rapporteurs, vœux et conclusions de XII Congrès Internationaux de Navigation 1885-1912. Plusieurs lieux de congrès, Bruxelles: Bureau exécutif: 38, rue de Louvain, 1913.

Barlatier de Mas F., Souvenirs de neuf congrès de navigation: Bruxelles, Vienne, Francfort, Manchester, Paris, La Haye, Bruxelles, Dusseldorf 1885-1902, Paris: Béranger, 1907.

Corthell Elmer Lawrence, Results of the Investigation into the Cost of Ports and their Operation, Bruxelles, Permanent International Association of Navigation Congresses, 1907.

Cunningham B., Port Administration and Operation. A review of systems of management in vogue in various countries, London: Chapman Hall, 1925.179 pages.

Federation internationale des ouvriers du transport (publié par), Feuille de Correspondance, Hambourg, 1906-1909.

Gilles de Pelichy, Charles Baron, Le régime du travail dans les principaux ports de mer de l’Europe, Louvain, Polleunis, 1899.

Guerard, A., Notes sur l’exploitation des ports de commerce, leur aménagement, leur outillage, Londres: Congrès international des travaux maritimes, 1893.

Harding H. Mc L., Installations à grand rendement pour la manutention de marchandises diverses dans les ports. Congrès international de navigation, 1913, Bruxelles: Association Internationale Permanente des Congrès de Navigation, 1913.

Laroche Charles and Pobeguin M. E., Etude comparée de l’outillage des ports français et étrangers, Paris: 4ème Congrès national des Travaux Publics français, 1912.

Vernaux René, L’industrie des transports maritimes au XIXème siècle et au commencement du XXème siècle. 2 tomes, Paris: Pedone, 1903.

Comparative studies of labour conditions and legislation

Association internationale pour la protection legale des travailleurs, Association internationale pour la protection légale des travailleurs; section belge. Rapport présenté à l’Office international du travail en 1913, Liège: Bénard, 1914.

Association internationale pour la protection légale des travailleurs. International Association for Labour Legislation. Compte-rendu de la 7ème assemblée générale du Comité de l’Association internationale pour la protection légale des travailleurs, tenue à Zurich les 10, 11 et 12 septembre 1912, suivi de rapports annuels de l’Association internationale pour la protection légale des travailleurs et de l’Office international du travail. Publication no. 7, Paris: Berger-Levrault, 1912.

Bellom M., La statistique internationale de l’assurance contre l’invalidité. Rapport présenté et propositions soumises à l’Institut international de statistique dans la session de Vienne (1913), Paris: Dunod et Pinat, 1913.47 pages.

Enquiry into the working-class rents, housing retail prices, and rates of wages, in the principal industrial towns, London: Eyre and Spottiswoode, 1908.

Festy Octave, “Les unions de dockers” dans ROUSIERS Paul de (avec la collaboration de carbonnel, festy, fleury et wilhelm), le trade-unionisme en Angleterre, Paris: A. Colin/Bibliothèque du Musée social, 1897.

France. Ministere Des Affaires Etrangeres, Conférence internationale concernant le règlement du travail aux établissements industriels et dans les mines, tenue à Berlin, du 15 au 29 mars 1890, Paris, 1890.

Loriga G., Commission no IV: protection des ouvriers des ports. Association internationale pour la protection légale des travailleurs. International Association for Labour Legislation. Sezione italiana. International Meeting, 8th, 1914, sans lieu, 1914. 15 pages.

Mahaim Ernest, Le droit international ouvrier, Paris, 1913.

Office international du travail, Bibliographie des Bulletins de l’Office international du travail, 1914 (no. 3), 1915 (no. 2).

Bulletin des Internationalen Arbeitsamtes, Band Xlll. Januar bis Dezember 1914, Jena, Fischer, 1915.

Report of an inquiry by the Board of Trade into the working-class rents, housing retail prices, and rates of wages, in the principal industrial towns of the German Empire, London: Darling and Son, 1908.

Report of an inquiry by the Board of Trade into the working-class rents, housing retail prices and rates of wages, in the principal industrial towns of France, London: Darling and Son, 1909.

Sastre y Sanna Miguel and Tallada José Maria, Le travail des ouvriers du port de Barcelone. Enquête de... Association internationale pour la protection légale des travailleurs. International Association for Labour Legislation. Sociedad para el progreso de la legislacion del trabajo. Publication no. 36, Madrid: Impresa M., Minuesa de los Rios, 1914, 8 pages.

Seilhac Léon de, Congrès de la législation du travail, tenu à Bruxelles du 27 au 30 septembre 1897, Paris: Firmin-Didot, 1898.

— Les ouvriers de transport en France, Altenbourg, typographic de St Geibel, 1902.

Terwagne Paul, «Sur le travail des ouvriers du port: Anvers», and Ronse E. «Sur le travail des ouvriers du port: Gand», Association internationale pour la protection légale des travailleurs. International Association for Labour Legislation. Comité belge pour le progrès de la législation du travail. Publication n° 13. Rapports présentés à l’Office international du travail au nom de la section belge en 1913, Liège: Bénard, 1914.

Villard, H. G., Workmen’s Accident Compensation and Insurance in Belgium, Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Italy, New York, Workmen’s Compensation Publicity Bureau, 1913, 34 pages.

Workmen’s Accident Compensation and Insurance in France, Holland and Switzerland, New York, Workmen’s Compensation Publicity Bureau, 1914, 79 pages.

Workmen’s Accident Compensation and Insurance in Germany, New-York, Workmen’s Compensation Publicity Bureau, 1913, 48 pages.

Notes

1 Baron Charles Gilles de Pelichy, Le régime du travail dans les principaux ports de mer de l’Europe, Louvain, Polleunis, 1899. This article is based on a paper submitted to Session H09: Comparative International History of Dock Labor 1790-1970, Twenty-Second Meeting of the Social Science History Association, October 16-1 9, 1997, Washington D. C., and, in a slightly modified version, to the Deuxième Conférence Européenne de l’Histoire Science Sociale, 5-7 mars 1998, Amsterdam.

2 Nijhof Erik in collaboration with Barzman John and Lovell John. Préactes du colloque “L’invention des syndicalismes. Le syndicalisme en Europe occidentale à la fin du XIXème siècle”. Jeudi 12 octobre 1995: Première session. Branches d’activités professionnelles. Dockers. 18 pages.

3 The project led to the publication of Davies Sam et al. (eds.), Dockworkers. International Explorations in Comparative Labour History, Aldershot, Ashgate, 2000. See the round table discussion on the two volumes in this book.

4 Frank Broeze, «Militancy and Pragmatism An International Perspective on Maritime Labor 1870-1914», International Review of Social History, 1991, XXXVI, 2, pp. 165-200.

5 The ILO directory, published in 1921, lists only nine international employers’ associations among which the International Shipping Federation and International Chamber of Commerce. See Bureau International du Travail, Annuaire international du travail, Genève, 1921. On the workers’side, many more trades had international federations. A retrospective study appears in International Labour Office, «Seven Maritime Sessions of the International Labour Conference», International Labour Review, no 78 (1955), pp. 429-460.

6 See for instance, Bureau International du Travail, Conférence internationale des statisticiens du travail. I. 1923, 29 octobre au 2 novembre. Genève. Les méthodes de classification des industries et professions. Rapports soumis à la Conférence internationale des statisticiens du travail, Genève, Bureau International du Travail, 1923.

7 Smith Joseph Russell, Influence of the Great War upon Shipping, New York, 1919, and Salter J A., Allied Shipping Control, Carnegie Foundation, 1921.

8 A typology and update of comparative social historical studies of all types may be found in Dumoulin Olivier, «Comparée (Histoire)» in Burguière André (sld), Dictionnaire des sciences historiques. Paris, Presses universitaires de France, 1986; and in Kaelble Helmut, «La recherche européenne en histoire sociale comparative (XIXème-XXème siècle)», Actes de la recherche en sciences sociales, no 106-107 (1995), pp. 67-79. Klaus Weinhauer mentions four important comparisons of dock labor produced between 1920-1960, by M. Gottschalk, A A. P. Dawson, V. H. Jensen and H. J. Helle (“Power and control on the waterfront: casual labor and decasualisation”, in Davies Sam ET AL., eds., op. cit., p. 582, note 9).

9 See a selection of classified titles in the Appendix to this article.

10 Association internationale permanente des congres de navigation, Dictionnaire technique illustré. Chapitre VII: Les Ports, sous la direction de Charles Laroche, 1938.

11 Ibid.

12 See Bensel J. A. and others, «Port Administration and Harbour Facilities of the Principal Ports of the United States and Europe», Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science (March 1907), pp. 113-156, Philadelphia; and a little later, Barney W. J., Secretary of the American Association of Port Authorities (compiled by), Selected bibliography on ports and harbours. Their administration, laws, finance, equipment and engineering, New York, 1917, 144 pages, and Meyer Herman (compiled by), List of references on shipping and ship building, Washington: GPO, 1919.

13 For a survey of the AAPA, see «AAPA: the first 85 years», an official history at the organisation’s website, http/www.aapa-ports.org (consulted 1999).

14 Pradelle Jean (compilé par), Association Internationale Permanente des Congrès de Navigation, Fleuves, Canaux et Ports. Notes bibliographiques 1907-10, Bruxelles, Société anonyme belge d’imprimerie, 1912, XXXI, 710 p.
--- Fleuves, Canaux et Ports. Notes bibliographiques 1911-1915, Bruxelles, AIPCN. 1920.
--- Fleuves, Canaux et Ports. Notes bibliographiques 1916-1920, Bruxelles. AIPCN, 1924.
--- Fleuves, Canaux et Ports. Notes bibliographiques 1921-1925. Vème série, Bruxelles, Société anonyme belge d’imprimerie.

15 Stephens George W. and Cowle Frederick W., Report on British and Continental Ports, with a view to the development of Montreal and Canadian transportation, 1900; also Adam Willis Kirkaldy, British Shipping. Its History, Organization and Importance, London: Kegan Paul, Trench Trubner; 1914, 655 pages; De Bray A. J., Les installations maritimes comparées des ports de Liverpool et d’Anvers, 1906; Bensel J. A., op. cit. Studies of management of French ports by British engineers are presented in Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers, 1887, Vol. LXXXVIII; those of the principal European ports by Belgian engineers Bovie, Hubert, and Verbrugghe, in 1880, are mentioned in Corthell Elmer Lawrence, Results of the Investigation into the Cost of Ports and their Operation. Bruxelles, Permanent International Association of Navigation Congresses. 1907, but could not be located in the Bibliothèque Nationale of France.

16 Barzman John et Morel Philippe, «Identité de la ville-port et acteurs de la vie portuaire: Le Havre face aux premières lois d’autonomie (1886-1925)», in Prelorenzo Claude (ouvrage en français et en anglais coordonné par), Vivre et habiter la ville portuaire-Port-City Lifestyles. Paris, Plan Constuction et Architecture, 1995, pp. 190-205.

17 See Congrès des ports de commerce tenu à la Rochette du 22 au 25 août 1909, Paris: Syndicat de la presse maritime, 1909, 105 pages; Association des employeurs de main-d’œuvre des Ports de France, circulaires, paris: 1907: Comite central des armateurs de France, Annuaire de la Marine marchande 1904 (I) et années suivantes, Paris: 1904 et années suivantes; Laroche Charles and Pobeguin M. E., Etude comparée de l’outillage des ports français et étrangers, Paris, 4ème Congrès national des travaux publics français, 1912 (Laroche was the head of the Civil Engineering branch of the steel conglomerate Schneider et Cie).

18 Laporte Pierre, Etude sur l’infériorité des ports de commerce français. Le Havre: Havre-Eclair, 1910, 123 pages. First-hand information on other ports is obvious in Widmer Maurice, Note sur l’outillage mécanique du port du Havre, Paris: Lahire, 1889.

19 Comité central des armateurs de France, Circulaires du Comité central des armateurs de France, “La ‘Shipping Federation’ anglaise et la protection des armateurs contre la grève”, Circulaire no. 207, du 17 octobre 1904» in Circulaires du Comité central des armateurs de France, tome III, p. 39, and “Grande-Bretagne. Loi tendant à protéger les salaires des ouvriers employés à la manutention de la cargaison et du charbon des navires”. Circulaire no. 783, du 17 juin 1912, tome XI, p. 903.

20 Commission constituee par arrete ministeriel du 31 Aout 1882 sous la presidence de Felix Faure, France. Ministère des Travaux publics. Comité consultatif des chemins de fer. Enquête sur la situation des ports français de la Manche au point de vue de la concurrence avec tes ports étrangers. Paris: Imprimerie nationale, 1883, 179 pages.

21 Franqueville Charles de (chargé de mission du Ministère des Travaux Publics), Rapport sur la législation anglaise sur les ports, Paris, 1874; Stoecklin and Laroche, Des ports maritimes considérés au point de vue de leur établissement et de leur profondeur. Rapport fait à la suite d’une mission en Belgique, en Hollande, et en Angleterre, Boulogne, 1878 (nlle. éd. 1880). Ploc and Laroche (chargés de mission du Ministère des Travaux publics), Rapport sur l’activité du service du port des localités anglaises, Paris, 1882.

22 Colson Clément et Roume E., L’organisation financière des ports maritimes de commerce en Angleterre, Paris: Veuve Charles Dunod, 1888.

23 Vernaux René, L’industrie des transports maritimes au XIXème siècle et au commencement du XXème siècle, 2 tomes, Paris, Pedone, 1903. See also notes on cargo-handling in De Cordemoy, Exploitation des ports maritimes, Paris: H. Dunod et E. Pinat, 1909.

24 Idem, pp. 140-141.

25 For example, A. J. De Bray, Les installations maritimes comparées des ports de Liverpool et d’Anvers, 1906.

26 Gilles de Pelichy Baron Charles, op. cit. His other works include: Les industries à domicile en Belgique, 1900, and Pour une civilisation chrétienne en Afrique, 1935.

27 Antoine Révérend Père, Cours d’économie sociale, Paris, 1896.

28 See «Statut secret pour la création d’une Shipping Federation Internationale. Privé et confidentiel», in Feuille de correspondance de la Fédération internationale des ouvriers du transport, IVème année, Hambourg, janvier-février 1909.

29 The early history of the congresses is described by Barlatier De Mas F., Souvenirs de neuf congrès de navigation: Bruxelles, Vienne, Francfort, Manchester, Paris, La Haye, Bruxelles, Dusseldorf, 1885-1902, Paris: Béranger; 1907.

30 Guerard A., Notes sur l’exploitation des ports de commerce, leur aménagement, leur outillage, Londres: Congrès international des travaux maritimes, 1893. Also in VIIIème Congrès de navigation intérieure tenu à Paris, 1900, Quatrième section: navigation maritime. Exploitation. Huitième question: appropriation des ports de commerce aux exigences du matériel naval, and Corthell Elmer Lawrence, Les ports du monde, leurs conditions de navigabilité et leurs installations dans le présent et dans l’avenir, the work of Laroche and Pobeguin cited in note 13, H. Mc L. Harding, Installations à grand rendement pour la manutention de marchandises diverses dans les ports, Congrès international de navigation, 1913, Bruxelles: Association Internationale Permanente des Congrès de Navigation. 1913.

31 Corthell E. L., Results of the investigation into the Cost of Ports and their Operation, Bruxelles: Permanent International Association of Navigation Congresses, 1907.

32 Factors considered were: 1) cost of operation of different sections of the port, 2) shipping tonnage, 3) merchandise tonnage, 4) gross revenue, 5) expense of operation, 6) net revenue, 7) percentage of cost of operating the port, 8) gross revenue per ton of shipping, 9) water area of port, 10) length of quays, 11) number of cranes, 12) floor area of sheds, 13) length of railway tracks, 14) depth of the port, 15) average amount of goods handled yearly, per lineal yard of quay, and 16) character of management.

33 Idem, p. 3.

34 Idem, p. 5.

35 Idem, p. 9.

36 See for instance the works of Barney, and Meyer cited in note 9, and Smith and Salter in note 5, which discuss the work of the Allied Military Transport Council.

37 Festy Octave, «Les unions de dockers», in Paul de Rousiers (avec la collaboration de Carbonnel, Festy, Fleury and Wilhelm), Le trade-unionisme en Angleterre, Paris, A. Colin/Bibliothèque du Musée social, 1897, p. 142.

38 Enquiry into the working-class rents, housing retail prices, and rates of wages, in the principal industrial towns, London, Eyre and Spottiswoode, 1908; and Report of an inquiry by the Board of Trade into the working class rents, housing retail prices, and rates of wages, in the principal industrial towns of the German Empire, London, Darling and Son, 1908; Report of an inquiry by the Board of Trade into the working-class rents, housing retail prices, and rates of the principal industrial towns of France, London, Darling and Son. 1909, all cited in Bulletin de l’Office du Travail, décembre 1908, avril 1909, mai 1909, septembre 1912.

39 Villard H. G., Workmen’s Accident Compensation and Insurance in Belgium, Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Italy, New York, Workmen’s Compensation Publicity Bureau, 1913, 34 pages; Workmen’s Accident Compensation and Insurance in France, Holland and Switzerland, New York, Workmen’s Compensation Publicity Bureau, 1914, 79 pages; and Workmen’s Accident Compensation and Insurance in Germany, New York. Workmen’s Compensation Publicity Bureau. 1913, 48 pages.

40 See the article of the Comité central des armateurs de France cited in note 15.

41 Follows John W., Antecedents of the International Labour Organization, Oxford, Clarendon, 1951.

42 Seilhac Léon de, Congrès de la législation du travail tenu à Bruxelles du 27 au 30 septembre 1897, Paris, Firmin-Didot. 1898, 133 pages.

43 Follows, op. cit.

44 Terwagne Paul, «Sur le travail des ouvriers du port: Anvers», and Ronse E., «Sur le travail des ouvriers du port: Gand», Association internationale pour la protection légale des travailleurs. International Association for Labor Legislation. Comité belge pour le progrès de la législation du travail. Publication no. 13. Rapports présentés à l’Office international du travail au nom de la section belge en 1913, Liège, Bénard. 1914. Loriga G., «Commission IV: protection des ouvriers des ports», Association internationale pour la protection légale des travailleurs. International Association for Labor Legislation. Sezione italiana. Sastre Y Sanna Miguel and Tallada José Maria, «Le travail des ouvriers du port de Barcelone. Enquête de... » Association internationale pour la protection légale des travailleurs. International Association for Labor Legislation. Sociedad para el progreso de la legislation del trabajo. Publication no. 36, Madrid. Impresa M. Minuesa de los Rios, 1914.

45 Konvitz Josef W., «The Crisis of Atlantic Port Cities, 1880 to 1920», Comparative Studies in Society and History, 1994, 36, 2, pp. 293-318.

46 The connection between the rise of comparative studies and the holding of international conferences deserves further study. On international congresses, see Rasmussen Anne, «Jalons pour une histoire des congrès internationaux au XIXème siècle: régulation scientifique et propagande intellectuelle», Relations internationales, 1990 (62), pp. 115-133.

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