The Historical Archives is the official record keeper of the European Parliament. It manages and preserves the Parliament's official public documents and other archival fonds, dating back to 1952. It also assists researchers on the history of the Parliament and European integration, publishes studies and articles on these subjects, and works closely with the EU Historical Archives at the European University Institute and the House of European History.

The Jean Monnet house

© European Union, 2018

In December 1982, the European Parliament purchased from its own budget the house belonging to Jean Monnet in Houjarray (a hamlet situated 45 km south-west of Paris near Monfort-l'Amaury), where he lived and worked for over thirty years.  Jean Monnet, who was recognised as a 'Founding Father of Europe', awarded the European Parliament gold medal in 1975 and declared an 'Honorary Citizen of Europe' in 1976, had acquired this old farm building in 1945 on his return from the US. It was there that he conceived the idea behind the Schuman Plan, giving rise to the European Coal and Steel Community in 1952. It was also there that he wrote his memoirs and received many European leaders and foreign heads of state. As early as in April 1979, a few days after his death, a number of his former colleagues suggested to Emilio Colombo, President of the European Parliament, that it would be a good idea to purchase the property, symbolising as it did the shared historic and cultural heritage of European citizens. However, it was not possible to conclude the sale until the death of his widow. The EP Committee on Youth, Culture, Education, Information and Sport immediately began to draw up proposals for possible uses of the Jean Monnet House, one suggestion being to renovate the property with its large garden and make it into a meeting place and information centre devoted to European integration. The advice of a number of media agencies was also sought as to how exactly this country house could be used. This was, however, a complicated task, given that all its furniture had been removed and the archives transferred to the Jean Monnet Foundation for Europe in Lausanne. At the same time, Jean Monnet's former colleagues in Paris were setting up the Friends of Jean Monnet Association for the purpose of keeping alive his memory, his work and his teachings. The Ile de France Regional Council agreed to subsidise the restoration of his office and library. The Jean Monnet House, which became a museum devoted to the life of its former owner and the work of the European Community, was accordingly inaugurated on 12 June 1987 in the presence of Pierre Pflimlin, President of the European Parliament. It currently hosts groups wishing to organise educational visits, conferences or professional seminars.

It happened in the EP

May 1958: the members of the European Parliamentary Assembly are seated according to their political affiliation

Minutes of the meeting of 13 May 1958 in Strasbourg

The members of the Common Assembly of the European Coal and Steel Community had been seated in the Chamber in alphabetical order since its inception in 1953, but the new European Parliamentary Assembly felt the need to highlight its political nature while also facilitating the work of the delegates. At the initiative of Pierre Wigny, Pierre-Olivier Lapie and René Pleven, there came a major innovation in procedure, with  members belonging to the same political group sitting alongside one another in the Chamber. Within the groups, members would then be seated in alphabetical order. The resolution to this effect was adopted on 21 March 1958 and applied from 13 May 1958.

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Historical Archives

Bâtiment Robert Schuman
Place de l'Europe
L-2929 Luxembourg