Child Labor

19th Century: Industrial Revolution Julia Threadgill

Jobs for Children

  • Coal Mines
  • Chimney Sweeps
  • Factory Workers
  • Farming
  • Ship Yards, etc.
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Child in textile mill

Young girl posing for a photo as a scavenger

Hours and Working Conditions

  • The common working hours for children were from 12 to 14 hours a day
  • 1 hour breaks for the entire day.
  • In more extreme cases children worked up to 19 hours.
  • Conditions in factories were extremely unsanitary mostly with low lighting.
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Coal Mine Kids

Dirty children standing outside of work place.


  • Hair stuck in machine
  • Skin ripped off
  • Lost limbs
  • Crushed to death
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Ouch my fingers!

Child with hand injury.


Punishments vaired among the job, the child, and the owner. Most involved lashings and beatings. While some beatings could be severe, extreme punishment was involved. In some cases, if a boy was late to work the previous day, he would be drug out of his bed and thrown out naked, holding only his clothes.
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Please No

Children wait to whipped while watching a beating.

Efforts to end Child Labor

  • The Regulation of Child Labor Law
  • First official law
  • Passed in 1883 to restrict hours on child labor.
  • Many labor union fought for better working conditions
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Two small girls smiling in a photo in the workplace.