Translation Services: Thai/English/Japanese/Chinese
By an expert from Chulalongkorn University and an experienced team


          The Thai Labour Museum came into existence because labour leaders, NGO representatives, scholars and historians gathering at the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung viewed a museum to be established in dedication of Thailand's missing chapter of the history. It was agreed the museum would serve as an information centre and a showcase of the Thai labour movement.

          A one-storied building, which was once home to railway police station and the Railway Labour Union Headquarters, was turned into the museum guarded by a stone sculpture of male and female workers pushing forward with all their might the wheel of history.

          The main hall houses a souvenir shop and functions as a meeting room and a temporary exhibition room. There are six exhibition rooms.

          Room no. 1 is devoted to illustrating the miserable life of the Thai slaves. On display are old utensils and accounts of the slave workers who were backbone of the feudal system.

          Room no. 2 gives visitors an insight into the Thai workers' involvement in the modernisation of the Kingdom during the reign of King Rama V.

          Room no. 3 shows the plight of Thai lobour prior to 1932 Political Reform. Anumber of documents show workers had already attempted to unite in the form of associations. A copy of leaflet distributed by workers demanding fair treatment and a copy of a labour newspaper, the first newspaper that spoke for the working people, provide firsthand information about the labour movement during this period.

          Room no. 4 displays the labour movement after the Political Reform in 1932 up to the coup d'etat by Field Marshal Sarit Thanarat

          Room no. 5 showcases photographs and accounts of the fate of labour leaders under the rule of Field Marshal Sarit. At that time, the labour movement was regarded as a threat to economic development and ruination of investment climate.

          Room no. 6 shows the records on the recent Thai labour movement. On view are accounts of the rally for the Social Security Act, the rally for 90-day maternity leave and work of Thanong Phoarn, a union leader who challenged the dictatorial National Peace keeping council and mysteriously disappeard in 1991. In addition, there is a participation of the workers in the fight for democracy in may 1992. In one corner of the room stands a showcase of remains from the burnt down Kader factory where hundreds of workers died in a fire, caused by the greed for profit.

          The room with bars is turned into the Prof Nikom Chandravitoon Library. He was a former directed scholar. The library offers a good collection of documents, books and research works on Thai labour and is open to the public.

Located on Makkasan Road, Ratchatewi, Bangkok
Tel : 0-2251-3173
Open : Wednesdays - Sundays, 10 am - 5 pm
Free admission


Bangkok. Tour Rathatewi district



28 April 2003