The Labor Force since the First Industrial Revolution

906 Words2 Pages

Labor Force

During the first Industrial Revolution, many social standards of the community were starting to change. Since there were new spinning and weaving machines available, the textile mill factories were built to increase their profit. The people who established these mills hired children and women to decrease their labor cost by paying them low wages and having poor working conditions for them as well. The Labor force impacted American culture through various means such as the child labor conditions, women in the factories, and the immigrants working in the factories.

The labor conditions that children faced were very demanding for a human being from such a small age. For example “In the Manayunk district of Philadelphia, children as young as seven assisted in spinning and weaving of cotton and woolen goods” (Wolensky 2). The children working in the factories had their childhood freedom taken away from them. “In 1830 in a sample of 43 Manchester mills, 22.3% of the workforce was under 14 and 32.4% under 16” (Cunningham 412). This means that about 50% of the workforce in the mills were made up of children under the age of 16 and in today in the United States, a person cannot work until the age of 16. “And it is a hard thing for small children to be confined in a tight close room all day long. It affects their growth, makes them pale and sickly” (Nason). The time these children spent in the factories prevented them from spending time with their neighbors, friends, and family. The fact that young children had to work in these textile mills, created changes to American culture on how childhood years are supposed to be spent.

Being part of the workforce was something new for the American Women, since they were expected...

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