Child Labor

England(Britain) in the 1800(19th century) By: Lauryn Scott

Jobs Children Did in Factories

  • Coal mines were very dangerous, smaller children would have to maneuver in tight spaces.
  • Some children had to crawl under the machines from being crushed to keep the gears clean and in working order.
  • Smaller boys who did chimney sweeping would be scrambled up inside the chimney to scrape and brush soot away.
  • Children would spin or weave clothes from yarn or cloth from a cotton mill.
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Caption: Childern working

The picture above is showing what the children do in the coal mines, as you can see there was little space in the coal mines.

Hours, food and working conditions


  1. Oatcakes
  2. Hard Bread and soups
  3. Mutton (cheaper meat from older sheep)
  4. Bacon
  5. Potatoes
  • In coal mines children worked 12-18 hours a day with little breaks.
  • Working conductions in coals mines were very dark, the thick coal dust was all in the air, there was rat infestation and constant noise.
  • Children in factories were given very little time to eat, usually half an hour for breakfast and lunch. They worked from 5 o'clock in the morning till 8 at night, sometimes longer.
  • Children who would weave clothes would get there fingers cut off but they couldn't stop working they would have to keep working. The factories were very loud, it sometimes damaged peoples hearing.
  • Chimney children worked 12-15 hours a day, the working conditions was very painful children's arms, legs, and knees would bleed from being cramped up in the chimney so long.

Accidents that often Happened

  • The coal mines were so dark that is caused permit problems with sight from constant strain on the eyes.
  • The most often way children die from mining is poisonous gases such as, hydrogen sulfide or explosive natural gases, and firedamp.
  • In the factories children hands and arms were cut off, the skin stripped down to the bone and a finger or two might be cut off by the machine.
  • All the fuels and chemicals in the chimney would get into the children's lungs and cause problems for the body which might led to death.
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Caption: Working condition

The picture above is showing people what childern looked like while they were at the factories, they didn't have a lot of safey gear on. There was cotton all over the floor, the factories weren't very clean either.

Punishments Childern Faced

  • Children who would horse play around the machines instead of doing there jobs in the factories would get whipped by the factor owner(boss.)
  • If the employees don't work fast enough at weaving an get a certain amount of work done they don't get to eat nor get paid.
  • If children became to tired they would get dipped head first into the water cistern.
  • If you arrive late you would get beat with a strap on your back till your back is black and blue.

Efforts to improve/Stop Child Labor

  • In 1864 parliament passed the "Act for the Regulation of Chimney Sweepers," which ended the use of young boys to clean the chimneys.
  • Women and nuns protected to stop child labor. In 1836 minimum age laws were passed.
  • In 1836 Massachusetts was the first state that requires children under 15 working in factories have to attend school at least 3 months/year.
  • June 25, 1938 the U.S Congress passed the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), children under 18 couldn't work at all.