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The Finnish Labour Museum

Collections and research


The collections at Werstas possess a long history that partially extends to the pre-war times. Today, Werstas’ recording eras extend far: from the history of the workers and working life to the questions and margins of social history. The museum joined forces with the Finnish Museum of the Deaf in 2012 and with the Lenin Museum in 2014. As a result of this merger, there is now a national collection of Finnish workers’ heritage that consists of approximately 80,000 items and 360,000 photos.  Additionally, the museum has a large library as well as booklets and archived material.

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The Finnish Labour Museum Werstas collects items and other materials related to the Finnish working life and social history. The museum is also responsible for recording the history of the Soviet Union and sign language. Important working life related phenomena are for example the trade union movement and topics related to unemployment. Areas of emphasis related to social history are for example the labour movement, cooperation movement and various grass-root movements, such as the environmental movement and minorities, for example the gender and sexual minorities. The events of 1918 form another focal point for Werstas in terms of collecting materials.