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International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 58 Records

Identifier: LR002685
This collection consists of a blend of original documents and historic research notes produced by Local 58’s history committee and special history projects. Original documents include financial records, meeting minute, dues logbooks, and other administrative documents produced by Local 58 and other locals that eventually became amalgamated with Local 58. Series 2 is additionally made up of materials produced by the international organization, primarily copies of the Electrical Worker’s Journal publication and convention proceedings books. Also included are numerous photographs of local members, events and job sites.

The contents of the digital hold are primarily audiovisual; consisting of both scanned and born-digital photographs, audio, and video files. Of particular note is a hard drive containing more than fifty-three folders of digitized documents and photographs, as well as research notes.
Series Description: Series 1: Local 58 Administrative Files, 1891-2015 Subseries A: Minutes, 1915-2014 Subseries B: General Administrative Files, 1891-2015 Subseries C: Member Files, 1990-2014 Subseries D: Former Locals Minutes and Administrative Files, 1912-2008

Series 2: International Organization's Publications and Events, 1897-2006

Series 3: Audio Visual and Oversize Materials, 1891-2010

Digital Hold: 1912-2012


  • 1891 - 2015
  • Majority of material found within 1920 - 2010


Language of Materials

Material entirely in English.


Collection is open for research.


Refer to the Walter P. Reuther Library Rules for Use of Archival Materials. Restrictions: Researchers may encounter records of a sensitive nature – personnel files, case records and those involving investigations, legal and other private matters. Privacy laws and restrictions imposed by the Library prohibit the use of names and other personal information which might identify an individual, except with written permission from the Director and/or the donor.


17 Linear Feet (16 SB, 3 OS)

85.43 Gigabytes


The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) was first formed in St. Louis in 1891. It grew rapidly in the ensuing years, with Detroit Local 58 forming in 1914, amidst the rapid growth of automotive factories in the region. This collection consists primarily of materials generated by Local 58, along with other local unions with which it has amalgamated. Materials include photographs, meeting minutes, dues books, financial records, and other administrative documents. Also included are extensive digital files, as well as materials generated by the International Organization – including convention proceeding books and copies of their periodical journal, the Electrical Worker’s Journal.


The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers was formed at a convention in St. Louis in 1891 and was chartered by the AFL later the same year, as the National Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. By the end of its first year, 43 locals had been chartered and they had grown to nearly 2,000 members. In 1899 they became the International Brotherhood with the establishment of their first Canadian local. Today they have nearly 750,000 active members in more than 160 locals.

Local 58 was formed on April 13, 1914, a natural result of the boom in automotive manufacturing that led to the construction of countless new plants needing electrical wiring. It was created through the amalgamation of Locals 18 and 271, who joined together in the hopes that greater unity would assist their progress. 58 has since continued to grow through various other amalgamations, including a merge with Local 448 in 1928, Local 1236 in 1966, Local 1447 in 1968, and Locals 245, 1377 and 1218 in 1972. Their goals can be summed up as seeking to promote reasonable methods of work; to settle all disputes between employees and employers through arbitration; and to reduce hours, seek equitable pay, and improve members’ standards of living.


Arranged in 4 series - Series 1 (Boxes 1-11), Series 2 (Box 11-14), Series 3 (Box 14-19), Series 4 (Digital Hold). , 1912-2012 Folders in each series are simply listed by their location within each box. They are not arranged, so any given subject may be dispersed throughout several boxes within each series. The exception is meeting minutes, which are arranged chronologically by local.

Series 1 is further arranged into 4 subseries.


Materials were donated to the Reuther Library by the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 58 in March 2016.

Related Materials

IBEW Journal of Electrical Workers and Operators


85.43 GB of photographs, scanned documents, and video and audio files are available in the Reuther Digital Repository.

Processing History

Processed and finding aid written by Kris Kniffen on May 12, 2016.
Guide to the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 58 Records
Processed by Kris Kniffen.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Walter P. Reuther Library Repository

5401 Cass Avenue
Detroit MI 48202 USA