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During the Victorian Period children were good sources of labor. Beginning work as young as six or seven employers saw many benefits to hiring children (Yancey 33). Adolescents were a significant part of the labor force because they could be paid lower wages (Cody). Also their naturally small and nimble hands and bodies were easily maneuverable. Employers most often hired children over adults because kids were powerless and would not revolt (Yancey 33). Economic conditions forced poor children into working, sometimes as hard and long as their parents (Cody). Essential to the economy, Parliament supported child labor saying a child was more useful to his family working (Altick 249).
Child laborers led very hard and grossly disgusting lives of filth. Generally the living quarters of laborers were poorly built, rotting, even falling down, with little
ventilation. There was no indoor plumbing causing people to throw human waste on unpaved streets. Houses were often crowded and rented by the room or even by the corner. Dirty floors and leaky roofs did not stop people from living in over crowded basements and attics (McMurtry 159).
The majority of the day of young workers was spent without their family. The factory system split up families for as much as fourteen hours. The time they did have together was either spent eating or sleeping. Young daughters developed no housewife skills because they were working and their work
Names mentioned in this term paper
Yancey, McMurtry, Ivor Brown, Charles Dickens, Cody, Harrison, Archon Books, Diane, Richard D., W.W. Norton,
Organizations included in this term paper
Locations talked about in this essay
Victorian England, New York, England, Hamden, San Diego, Seattle, CA,
Companies included in this paper
Microsoft Corporation, CT, Lucent Books Inc., Publishers Inc.,
Keywords referenced in this paper
child labor, laborers, Victorian Era, Victorian England, the victorian era, Victorian Period, Cody, labor force, Victorian Fiction, New York, school, conditions, young boys, Ivor Brown, odd jobs, living quarters, chimneys, unskilled workers, narrow stairs, fourteen hours, lower class, fossy jaw, fire hazard, unsanitary, WORKS CITED, Praeger Publishers, Charles Dickens, black lung, lung diseases, human waste, Microsoft Encarta, norton and company, San Diego, Microsoft Corporation, Textile mills, sweatshops, schooling, employers, small, education, mining, schoolteachers, crammed, odorous, attics, daily, suffocation, disgusting, Victorians, unpaved,