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Glavkomtrud and Narkomtrud (Main Committee on Universal Compulsory Labor and Public Commissariat of Labor)

Главкомтруда и Наркомтруда

Glavkomtrud (Main Committee on Universal Compulsory Labor) was established in 1920 during the Russian Civil War to mobilize labor troops to help win the war for the Bolsheviks and rebuild infrastructure. It was divided into provincial branches called Кomtruds (Labor Committees). Glavkomtrud and the Komtruds were both interdepartmental organizations devised for coordinating mandatory labor conscription. The People’s Commissariat for Labor (Narkomtrud) collected data concerning the number of eligible workers for conscription. Labor mobilization spanned a variety of occupations from mining, metal smelting and shipbuilding, to the textile and food industries. Peasants were also required to mobilize.

Sources & Citations

Bunyan, J. (1987). The origin of forced labor in the Soviet State 1917-1921: Documents and materials. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press.
Gleason, A. (1985). Bolshevik culture: Experiment and order in the Russian Revolution. Bloomington: Indiana Univ.
“Militarization of Labor” at Seventeen Moments of Soviet History,