Chapter 05: Women and Child Labour

Submitted by Reddebrek on April 19, 2016

The employment of the labour of women and children has, in America as in England, two chief causes that react one on the other. By their employment the capitalist obtains labour at a cheaper rate, and the poverty of the labourer's family forces the weaker members of it to seek for work. "And this employment of women and child labour has assumed alarming proportions, relatively larger ... than in Europe" (New Jersey Report, p. 265).

The employer prefers to employ women and children. Fall River:--"We never employ men when we can get women who can do their work just as well. This is done, not only on account of the reduced expenses, but because they cause less trouble by striking, or by finding unnecessary fault " (Superintendent, p. 192). A Lawrence weaver said: " One of the evils existing in this city is the gradual extinction of the male operative.... Within a radius of two squares in which I am living, I know of a score of young men who are supported by their sisters and their mothers, because there is no work in the mills for them" (p. 11).---New Jersey:-- "Woman and child labour is much lower priced than that of men,.., the hours of labour are longer and the rate of wages less, women never agitate, they merely 'toil and scrimp, and bear"' (New Jersey Report, 1884, Commissioner, p. 265). "Women, however, are learning that they must agitate, and that the highest virtue is not to 'scrimp, and toil, end bear.' " According to the just-issued New Jersey Report, "Since the girls have joined the Knights of Labour here (Vineland) they make the same wages as the men" (Commissioner Report, 1886, p. 188). In some cases the women are certainly employed on work of too arduous a nature.--Pennsylvania:--"That women have been permitted to perform the severe manual labour generally apportioned to men [in mines] is true.... The owners did not directly hire the women, but must have been cognisant of the facts" (Commissioner, B.).--Women's time is stolen, and their lives risked like those of the men. Utica, New York State:--"Question: 'Was it not the custom to go in before the starting time to clean machinery?' Answer (female weaver): 'Yes, sir, it was.' Question: 'Did you get paid extra for it.' Answer : "No, sir; and the girls used to clean their looms while running, at the risk of getting their hands taken off"' (New York, 1884, p. 127). When they are employed st work for which they are supposed to be fitted the wages are terribly low.---New York (Report for 1885): "An expert [at crotcheting ladies' shawls] could earn 123 cents for a day's labour." "The half-starved, overworked seamstress ... pays for the machine by which ..· she is enabled to make pants for 1 dollar 50 cents a dozen. Vests st 15 cents a piece. It is this slave-ridden and driven woman that, in case of fire, is held responsible for the goods that my be destroyed in her awful rookery home." Collar and cuff makers, "Women pay out of their wages about 75 dollars per year for thread." Tailoress earns "four months a-year 3 dollars per week. The place is in a horrible condition." Shirt ironers, wages 1 dollar 25 to 1·50 per week. Gloves per dozen, 90 cents. "Millinery, 12 cents a day....Firm pays every two weeks:' The law demands that in certain occupations seats shall be provided for the women employed. The seats are provided--but "the spirit of the law is absolutely defied and set at nought by, the refusal of employers to allow these women to occupy them." In America, as in England, the sweater "lives on the woman's earnings, literally on her sweat and blood." Ladies' under-garments, 30 cents per dozen; small size, 15 cents per dozen. Wrappers, 1 dollar per dozen. Cloak working, women employed by the great dry goods stores--full day's pay--. .. 50 to 60 cents. ... Shirts, 75 cents to 1 dollar 50 cents per dozen. Of 1,322 women 27 earned 6 dollars a week; 6 earned 5; 127 earned 4; 534 earned 1 dollar. Women in factories are fined on every possible pretext. If found with a paper in their hands, sometimes as high as 2 dollars, and for being late as much as 1 dollar. There is no tired amount, whatever may occur to the foreman or superintendent. ... Fines for being five minutes late, in a silk weaving factory 25 cents, and half hour's time; for washing your hands 25 cents; eating a piece of bread at your loom 1 dollar; also for imperfect work, sitting on a stool, taking a drink of eater, and many trifling things too numerous to mention." Matters are just as bad in other large cities as in New York. For instance in Philadelphia, ladies' wrappers are made for 60 cents per dozen. The best wages paid do not go beyond 5 dollars per week. Plain jerseys bring 37 cents per dozen, the maximum earning per week reaching 4 dollars. Overalls are made for 5 cents a pair; an active worker can turn out ten pairs a day. Long aprons, called "nurse aprons," with a deep hem all around and two tucks at the bottom, bring 35 cents a dozen. By working from 5.30 in the morning till 7 at night, two dozen can be made in a day. The average wages paid to saleswomen and girls employed in clerical work does not exceed 5 dollars per week. On this they have to dress well in order to keep their position. Board and room at the lowest figure is 3 dollars, not counting laundry work, which has also to come from the 5 dollars. The sanitary condition of the workshops and factories is described as very bad, and "calls for immediate reform." In many factories where men and women are employed there are no separate closets for the women, and many modest girls risk their health on this account. Then the 'hands' are locked into the rooms. We ourselves were shown such a room where a number of unhappy girls had been burnt to death through such locking of the doors." Of the " peculiar abuses" to which these women are subject a few acre mentioned by the Commissioner: "Artificial flowers: Poisoned hands and cannot work. Had to sue the man for 50 cents." Saleswoman: "No ventilation and have to use gas or electric light all day." Shoes: " Water in fire buckets is not often changed. It is frequently green with age." Gents' ties: "Work in basement with gas light." "One hundred women and small girls work in a cellar without ventilation, and electric light burning all day." "In certain workshops there are facilities for washing, but if caught washing fined" (Comm., pp. 147--162). If the workshops and factories are in this condition, it will easily be imagined what the "homes " and the " house-labour" of these women are like. "No words of mine," Mr. Peck says, speaking of the tenements and their female occupants, "certainly can convey to the public any adequate conception of the truly awful condition of thousands of these suffering people" (p. 164). "A room on the attic floor of a wretched old rookery in Heater Street... was possibly ten feet square. The ceiling was low and slanting, and its only source of light was through the begrimed panes of glass of a small gable window opening on the roof.... The air was stifling... and odoriferous with sewer gas. Piled upon the door were stacks of cloaks ready to be put together. The women (a number of cloak makers) were scantily clad, their hair was unkempt, and their pale, abject countenances, as they bent over their work, formed a picture of physical suffering and wane, that I had certainly never seen before. ... They were working as if driven by some unseen power; but when I learned that they were enabled to earn 50 cents for sixteen and perhaps more hours' Labour per day, it needed no further investigation to convince me that the 'unseen power' was the necessity of bread for their own and their children's mouths. The style and quality of the cloaks upon which these women were at work was of the latest and best. They were lined with quilted silk or satin, and trimmed with sealskin or other expensive material, and found ready sale in the largest retail stores of the city, at from 35 dollars to 75 dollars each. Two of these women could manage by long hours and the most diligent application to turn out one cloak per day, and the price received was 1 dollar or 50 cents a piece. This," adds the Commissioner, "is not a fancy picture nor is it an exceptional case." In another such room where also the "temperature was next to suffocating and dense with impurities ... on one end of the table, at which four of these women sat, was a dinner pail, partially filled with soup,--that is what they called it,--and a loaf of well seasoned bread. These two sumptuous courses, served wit·h one spoon and one knife, satiated the thirst and hunger of four working women." A trained seamstress said: "I have sat steadily at the machine from six o'clock in the morning till one o'clock at night--and I sew rapidly-and yet only make 25 cents a day." But "the most deplorable aspect of woman's labour is to be found among those unfortunates who, having no specific calling, are forced to seek casual labour ... at scrubbing or washing.... Visits have been made to these women's resorts of which it can only be said that the condition of debasement is beyond description if not belief.... In a single tenement house on the west side of New York...a building five stories in height, very narrow, and with an extremely shabby exterior. The main entrance was not over three feet in width, and the stairs were uncomfortably steep, and hardly admitted of the passage of two persons. They were lighted (?) from a very small and dirty skylight set in the roof, and barely discernible by reason of the accumulated cobwebs and dust· of generations....The case of one family found living on the fifth or attic door was of a character to touch even the most hard-hearted. My knock on the door was responded to by the feeble voice of a,middle-aged man, who, upon entering, I found sitting on an old box close to the broken-down stove which stood, or rather was propped up by bricks, at one side of the apartment. He was engaged in whittling a small stick with which to kindle a fire, while three children hovered near by, and seemed chilled with cold. The furniture of the room, if I might dignify it by that name, consisted of a pine table, three legs of which were made from rough pieces of board, one of these even being spliced; the fragments of what had originally been two chairs, and the remains of an old sofa, with its hind legs intact, and the place of the two missing ones in front supplied with chunks of wood. This room was possibly ten feet square, and lighted by a single window, which gave a view of the walls of a large factory which hemmed in the tenement on two sides. Connected with this was the almost universal 'inside' room, absolutely without ventilation or light, except that gained through the door opening into it. Its cramped space was nearly taken up with a bad consisting of a filthy old mattress, stretched out on the top of two old trunks, and a wooden box. From conversation with the man I learned the fact that he was a cripple and unable to work. In addition to the three children present he had two older ones, ... and these seven human beings lived in these two rooms. ... This was but one of perhaps twenty family histories in the same building....In this same building was the home of another scrub-woman; ... the woman was in poor health, ... and the features of her one child at home--a little girl some five years of age--looked pale, pinched, and forlorn; her emaciated body was covered with an aggregation or Fags,... the two formed a sad and touching picture. And all within a stone's throw of Broadway, the great business thoroughfare of New York city. ... It must be understood that they are not abandoned women, but are really working women" (pp. 165--167). The condition of the women employed in cigar-making (i.e., in tenements) is on all fours with the above. Just as the cloak makers "work till twelve or one o'clock, sleep by the machine a few hours, and then commence to work again " (p. 178), these women also, with their families, "work, eat, and sleep in these rooms." "I see women," says a thoroughly reliable witness, "surrounded by filth with children waddling in it, and having sores on their hands and faces and various parts of the body. ... They are all the time handling this tobacco they make into cigars."

Of the special diseases of these working women, the natural result of the long hours of work, the poor food, the horrible dens in which t.hey live, the Commissioner has much to arty. One or two quotations will suffice. "Sewing machine girls are subject to diseases of the womb, and when married mostly have miscarriages. In tobacco factories women are mostly affected with nervous and hysterical complaints, consumption and chest ailments" ...(p. 171). In his final summary (p. 632) Mr. Peck speaks of the "long hours of labour, the beggarly wages" of these women, and maintains that the facts accumulated by him "furnish the most convincing reasons for legislative interference."

As to the number of women thus working. In New York city there are some 20,000. Of 70,000 hands in Connecticut 20,000 are women. These quotations refer more especially to New York city, mainly for the reason that the Commissioner for the state devoted almost the whole of his last report to the condition of the working women of the metropolis. But--as the extracts from the Fall River, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut Reports show--it would be an error to suppose the New York women to be in an altogether exceptional position. Everywhere in America today--save in such occupations as ironworking, e.g., from which women are of necessity excluded--they are forced into direct competition with the men, and are in many cases replacing them. Everywhere we found women forced to work for wages because the husband's were insufficient for even bare subsistence, besides having to tend their children, and go the usual dreary round of endless household drudgery. We have lived in English factory towns and know something of English factory hands; but we may fairly say we have never in the English Manchester seen women so worn out and degraded, such famine in their cheeks, such need and oppression, starving in their eyes, as in the women we saw trudging to their work in the New Hampshire Manchester. What must the children born of such women be?

Before leaving this subject we cannot refrain from referring to an aspect of it that calls for far more detailed investigation than we can give it here. That is, the compulsory prostitution that this state of affairs brings about. A Philadelphia employer of labour quoted in an American newspaper (The Philadelphia Record), on the complaint of a girl that she could not live on the wages she was paid, advised her to do as the other girls did, and get a gentleman friend to help her. " Grinding poverty is a very general cause of prostitution, ... the prominent fact is that a large number of female operatives and domestics earn such small wages that a temporary cessation of business, or being a short time out of situations, is sufficient to reduce them to absolute distress, and it becomes a literal battle for life. ... There was a good deal of quasi prostitution, ...when out of work they cohabit with one or two men, but when work was obtained dropped such associations" (New York, 1886, pp. 187--89). "What were the things complained of?' [i.e., in certain mills]. have known of a premium being paid for prostitution in one of the mills in this city.' 'Did you find a case: where improper liberties were taken?' 'I have known of bosses trying to compel poor girls to meet them at different places; such were the complaints made to me. ... In the Utica steam cotton mills some of the girls were being robbed of their cloth ... while it was found two girls were credited with more cloth than they could possibly have done, and besides they had not half worked; these two girls were not only not respectable, but were bad.' 'And was it known by the employers that they were such?' "Yes, sir"' (New York, 1885, p. 127). Of the fearful number of women forced to choose between starvation and prostitution in such "flourishing" towns as Kansas city and Indianapolis two clergymen, the Rev. Robert Collier and the Rev. William MacCullough, bore sadly eloquent testimony during our stay there.

The Children.--They In America, as in England, are gradually ousting the men, where they are not themselves in turn ousted by machinery. --Fall River:--"Parents are obliged to do this [send children to the mills] to earn sufficient for the maintenance of their family" (Cotton Operative, p. 10) "The management has given some of the frames in the spinning-room into the charge of boys" (Cotton Operative, y. 152). New York (1884 and 1886):--"Without the wages earned by children parents would be unable to support their families" (Commissioner, p. 112). "To such extremities of want are these people pushed that they are not only compelled to work long and excessive hours, but their children are dragged in, and compelled to work as well" (Commissioner; 1,. 162). ----Kansas:--"Two of my boys help me, or I could not keep out of debt" (p. 13f). " Children, as a rule, are taken from school when they are of an age to perform any kind of manual labour--say twelve to fourteen years" (Superintendent of lead and zinc mines, p. 142).--New Jersey:--"Their remuneration [the men's] because of female and child competition has been reduced to such an extent that only with the aid received from other members of the family are they able to keep the wolf from the door" (p. 265). "Children are occupying the places of adult labour here" (p. 218).

The demand for child labour forces the parents, as in this country, to lie about the ages of their children, and such laws as exist are constantly evaded or ignored. The workers called as witnesses are almost unanimous in their demand that where laws regulating child labour exist they should be enforced. The opinions of these men and women, even when they are starving parents, are accurately represented by a quotation from the Kansas report:-- "I think a parent should be compelled to send his child to school until he is fourteen years old. If child labour was abolished it is my opinion that there would be 35 per cent. more employment for persons now out of work" (Ironmoulder, p. 110). The opinion of all the Commissioners whose reports we have seen, including even Mr. Flower's, of Wisconsin, is represented by the following words of the New Jersey Commissioner:--" There are enough laws on the Statute Book, if properly enforced, at least to restrain the labour of children within reasonable limits, and to make creditable citizens of them, by providing them with a rudimentary education" (p. 266).

But thousands of children are not receiving this rudimentary education. American schools are in all respects admirable, only with the "growth of industry" the power of the children to go to them decreases. When people are starving the children must get bread before they get teaching. In all the Eastern factory towns, in all the lumber districts, even in many a Western city, we heard the same story. "The children must work; they can't go to school." Where the law demands school attendance, the law is evaded. Hence the alarming increase of night schools where young men and women of sixteen and upwards are trying to learn, after a long day's labour, what the law declares they shall learn as little children. In factories the children are "shifted" when the inspectors appear, and thus--unless they are strong enough after ten to twelve hours' work to attend night school--thousands of little ones grow up in complete and dangerous ignorance.----Wisconsin :-" Our compulsory education law is inoperative --has been a dead letter since its enactment in 1879" (Commissioner, p. xiii.)---Kansas:--" Times is so bad that it is a hard thing to send children to school, although schools are so plenty" (Farmer, p. 122).---Fall River:--"We have, a good system of public schools ... but ... impracticable for the mill children who attend school only compelled by law" (p. 177).----Michigan :-" Between the ages of ten and fifteen there were 196,224 children, of whom 30,230 did not attend school... over 15 per cent."--New Jersey :--"Many of them [farming boys] are overworked, and grow up without a chance to get a common school education" (p. 228). "In 1873 the school census gave 286,444 children between the school ages, of whom 179,443, or 62.6 per cent. were enrolled in the public schools, and 69,229, or 24.l per cent. were estimated to have attended no school. In 1888 there were 343,897 school children, of whom 209,526, or only 60.9 attended the public schools, while 89,254 went to no school. In 1878, near the close of the financial crisis, over 62.8 per cent. of our children attended the public schools, and the average attendance (113,604) was actually larger than that four years later (113,482) although the number of children of school age was nearly 22,000 less " (Commissioner, p. 267). New York:--"According to the last report of the Hen. W. B. Ruggles, State Superintendent of the Department of Public Instruction, we have the following statistics:--

Number of children in the State between five end twenty one years of of age, meaning the legal school age, ...1,685.000.

Number of children in the common schools,....1,041,089.

Average daily attendance.....533,142.

"This means on its face that 644,011 of the children of the State of New York, whose expenses for a common school education are paid by the State, were not found in the schoolrooms during the official year upon which this report is founded. It means that the average daily absence from these schools was 1,101,958." As says another, "'It is impossible for the mind to contemplate the terrible import of these figures. They are so astounding as to seem almost incredible.' And yet these are the official figures gathered in the same manner for thirty years past:' (p. 57). It is true the Superintendent sayS that in this number there are many being educated in private schools, universities, etc., but the Commissioner points out that " teachers and school officers endeavour to put the best side out," and "unless the State attends to the duty (of enforcing education) it will soon be called upon to provide for these neglected boys and girls in alms-houses, hospitals, asylums, reform schools, and penitentiaries · · · These remarks," adds the Commissioner, Mr. Charles F. Peck, "are naturally suggested by the statistics, and they ought to be suggestive of our duties as citizens and law-makers." In conclusion, he quotes the summary of the "intelligent officials ": "That an army of uneducated and undisciplined children is growing up among us is shown, not only by the State and United States statistics, but by the general observation of men interested in the welfare of children, the widest diffusion of education, and the perpetuity of our free institutions. The terrible fact is further revealed by the incontrovertible evidence of the organization and condition of our schools."

To give some idea of the amount of child labour. --Michigan:--"71 establishments in 46 towns and cities ... representing 26 different classes of business; 292 boys and 62 girls employed from 8 to 14 years." "In Detroit, 92 different establishments; 287 boys, 85 girls between the ages of 10 to 15, " (Commissioner, pp. 238--245). In Connecticut, of the 70,000 hands mentioned above, 3,000 were children under 15. In the cigar-making trade of New York city 20 to 25 per cent, of the labourers are children. As to 8 different trades child labour is reported as "not coming into competition with adult labour" in two (though in these same trades, cigarmaking and telegraphers, a large number of children are employed to help the adults), and as coming into "direct competition," "crowding out adult labour to some extent," or "the displacing of a man by two boys," in six (p. 74). " And," says the Commissioner, " the testimony as to the employment of 'children of tender age' in tenement houses furnishes the evidence of a condition of existing affairs which, I do not hesitate to say, calls for prompt and effective action on the part of the legislature." ..."'What is the appearance of these child labourers?' 'The physical appearance of the girls in cigar factories is that which we mould find in some of the pauper schools that Dickens describes in England,... the close confinement in an atmosphere where tobacco is being manufactured is detrimental to full grown people, and must be more so to those not physically developed.'...Do employees receive a full hour for meal-time during noon?' 'Not over a half an hour.'...'Do they eat their meals in the factory or outside ?' 'In the factory; not one in five hundred goes home, for the time allowed is so short.' 'Of what does the meal usually consist?' 'Poor men's sandwich--two pieces of bread, with a little piece of bread in the middle' .. ." (New York Report, 1884, p. 145--146). As to hours.----Michigan :--"In Detroit, 9 hours 50 minutes for the girls, and 4 hours 56 minutes for the boys" (Commissioner, pp. 245, 246). In Yorkville, the village of New York mills, 11 hours are the day's work for children under 14. In the cigar factories 95 per cent. of the children work 10 hours a day. In the smaller bakeries children of from 9 to 13 start, work at 11 at night and go on until 4 in the morning. In cotton mills they work from 10 to 11 hours. These instances are taken from States where there is a legal limit, and will give some idea of what happens in other States where there is none of this "annoying legislation."

Their wages. In the 71 establishments in 16 places mentioned above, "the wages were 50 cents per day for the boys, and 31 cents for the girls. The average wages paid to boys in Detroit was 35 cents per day, and to girls 29 cents per day" (Commissioner, p. 241--245). In New York city " there are little children working for 2 dollars a week in the large dry goods establishments,... and at tailoring, some are employed by the week, when they earn from 1.50 to 2 dollars; some work by the piece [at pulling threads out from coats], and the regular price is 2 coats for a cent" (pp. 168--179).

To draw to an end with this, we quote a few passages out of many. "There are little children working in the large dry goods establishments. The owners of these large houses in some instances are very severe on the children, and treat them, not like human beings, but like slaves" (New York Report, 1884, p. 168)...."I have been in tenement houses and seen children from 7 to 12 years of age at work; ... when busy they work from 7 o'clock in the morning till 9 and sometimes 10 at night." Louis Troester:--"Have seen children working in tenement houses; they were from 8 years of age upwards; they worked from early morning till 9 and 10 o'clock at night preparing tobacco; they were denied the pleasure of going into the streets;... and also the privileges of education." Frederick Haller:--"You can see any number of children employed in stripping and preparing tobacco;.., they work from 11 to 13 hours a day--sometimes more; they do not work as long hours as grown persons, but enough to kill them rapidly" (pp. 179, 180). In "crueler bakeries ...the place is one thorough mass of smoke from the heated oil,... and children work all night through, or rather, until 4 o'clock in the morning,...and you see children lying upon barrels or about the stores, and they are children from 13 years down to 9 years old" (p. l55). "In the American district Telegraph Company ... are boys 11 and 12 years of age who are required to be continually at work at least 10 hours a day, running into the worst of places in all sorts of weather, mixing with all kinds of people, into houses of the most damnable disrepute, houses of assignation, and gambling houses; it is very detrimental to their health and morals; they are also compelled to work overtime, and sometimes the hours of their labour commence in the morning, say at 8 o'clock, and they work until 1; and in the evening commence their work again from 6 o'clock until 11 o'clock, and then very frequently work overtime, so.., while they work 10 hours and often overtime, the hours of their labour extend from 8 in the morning to 11 in the evening; in the 5 hours intervening, may be, frequently compel them to devote an hour or more before they go from their homes to the office, and it cannot be devoted to rest, pleasure, or recreation in the true sense of the term" (p. 155). And in factory towns it is not only the children working in the mills who claim our pity. " Several children," says Col. Wright, in his Fall River Report, "were found supplied with a loaf of bread, which was their dinner, their parents going to the mills in the early morning and not returning until night" (p. 90). No wonder that the New York Commissioner breaks out: "I plead for the little ones. ... In these days of legislative interference, when the shield of the State protects the dumb beast from the merciless blows of his driver; when the over-worked horse is remembered and released from his work,... it would seem pitiable if childhood's want of leisure for rest of body, and education for rest of mind should be denied them. Massachusetts ... goes on regardless of consequences, protecting the strong, forgetting the weak and poor ... under the false plea of non-interference with the liberty of the people. The children have rights that the State is bound to respect. Their right is to play and make merry; to be at school, to be players not workers" (p. 355).

To come back from the poetry of this impassioned appeal let us turn finally to the dry facts and figures.---New Jersey:--"While there were nearly twice as many children employed in the factories in 1880 than in 1870 [for the whole of the United States], the increase in women operatives was 142 per cent., while in adult male labour the gain had fallen short of 50 per cent." (p· 265). "Must 'Granite Mills' burn down and bury in their ruins the smouldering dust of mother and child before the law will give to them the power of self-protection? Must children plead in vain?"

On the antagonism between the capitalist and the labourer under our present system, and on the internecine struggle between these two, that is the epic of the last part of the nineteenth century, a few final notes. Fall River:--"The former feeling of bitterness between the north and south is but an example of t·he feeling 'twixt employed and employer in Fall River" (Operative, p. 146). "... this contest ... between labour and capital will continue so long as the purely wage system lasts. It is absurd to say that the interests of capital and labour are identical." (Colonel Wright, Industrial Depression Report, 1886). The outcome of this antagonism, and the ending of it, are in the organisation of the working classes. This is recognised by all the Commissioners, except Mr. Flower, of Wisconsin. ---Pennsylvania:--"Capital is concentrated, governed by single intelligence,... labour is diffusive, naturally disorganised,...but it is organised labour that the capitalist most fears, and therefore it is with it that he most strongly contends and encourages individual action" (pp. xvi., xvii.).---- Ohio :--" The trades having the most powerful and compact organisation come the nearest to receiving an equitable share of the joint product of capital and labour" (p. 3). --New York:--" Organisation is absolutely necessary to protect .. · the wageworker. There is but one way by which labour can place itself in a position (to sell itself where it pleases), and that is by organisation." "This organisation is their [i.e., the workers] only strength in contests (with the capitalist) in which sentiment or justice has not yet entered" (pp. 298, 556, 612). The working men themselves almost unanimously declare that in organisation lies their hope for the future. "The only way," says a Kansas working man, whose words sum up the opinions of hundreds of his fellows in this and other States, " advance the cause of labour, is for all to stand together and work as one" (p. 111). Even Mr. Flower. of Wisconsin, has to quote 29 workers out of 37 as favourable to labour organisations, and only 6 are said to be antagonistic to them.

And of the dangerous and bitter spirit of both parties in this contest, one quotation may be taken as typical evidence. "Miners in 0hio have been paraded in some of the press of the State as being in their normal element only when on a strike....Where villainies such as are described above are practised upon a class of men, the wonder is that they have contented themselves with strikes.., In many other communities, under similar circumstances, furnishing subjects for first-class funerals would have been resorted to" (Commissioner, p. 226).

To reduce the possibility of funerals, first-class and otherwise, to a minimum, it is clear that the workers of America must organise. Indeed, they have begun some time ere this to organise, and on the nature of the working-class organisations and their bearing on the future of American politics and economics as shall speak. We end by calling attention to the three chief points as to which, according to the reports, intelligent labour is unanimous: abolition of child labour, eight-hour working day, organisation.