U.S. Child Labor During the Industrial Revolution 1915-1935

This exhibit demonstrates that the Industrial Revolution in the United States, specifically during 1915-1935, had a tremendous impact on the prevalence of child labor.

Subject A: Source 1 (Time)

The Industrial Revolution by Arnold Toynbee

This book is a young man’s account of the Industrial Revolution. Arnold Toynbee provides an inside view of life and labor during the early to mid-1900s of the Industrial Revolution (eventually published in 1956). Toynbee was the first economic historian to think of, and to actually set out and describe, the Industrial Revolution as a single great historical event. We can gather primary information about labor trends during this time period through this piece, as opposed to the secondary information in many textbooks.

Toynbee, Arnold. The Industrial Revolution. Boston: Beacon, 1956. Print.

Subject B: Sources 2, 3, and 4 (Images, Maps, & Words)



This picture illustrates the prevalence of child labor in factories throughout the Industrial Revolution. Many factories had bad working conditions, and this would sometimes cause casualties due to machinery or lack of sanitation. The map shows the regulations on daily hours for children under 16 in factories and stores during 1933. Georgia and Vermont had no child labor regulations, but this does not mean that all states followed their regulations. The factories seemed to be very lenient on minimum wage requirements along with child labor regulations. Lastly, the Voyant text analysis shows that some of the most common words in The American Labor Movement are labor, union, strike, and wages, which show some of the problems that were faced during the American Industrial Revolution. Low wages, bad working conditions, long labor hours, and child labor caused many to go on strike.


Hines, Lewis Wickes. Doffer in a Lincolnton, (N.C.) Mill. Digital image. Library of Congress. Library of Congress, n.d. Web. 02 Dec. 2016. <https://www.loc.gov/item/ncl2004000964/PP/&gt;.


US Department of Labor’s Children’s Bureau. “Daily Hours for Children Under 16 in Factories and Store, 1933.” Maps Show How States Handled Child Labor Laws Before Federal Regulation. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Dec. 2016. <http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_vault/2014/01/06/child_labor_history_maps_showing_regulation_of_kids_work_in_the_1930s.html&gt;.

“Voyant Tools.” Voyant Tools. Stefan Sinclair & Geoffery Rockwell, 2016. Web. 02 Dec. 2016. <http://voyant-tools.org/?corpus=e2016be9e79de83025b30eff489929be&gt;.

Subject C: Sources 5 & 6 (Numbers & Social Media)

Child Labor Facts and Statistics

The Industrial Revolution, WordPress Blog

The strong surge of child labor in the United States came during the Industrial Revolution due to the need for cheap labor and many factory laborers. All of these statistics and facts show that child labor is still a major problem throughout the world to this day. Although child labor is not an evident problem in the United States, many other countries still struggle with it. Lastly, this WordPress Blog addresses many different topics on the Industrial Revolutions of the 18th and 19th centuries including additional information on child labor in the United States.

“Child Labor Facts and Statistics.” The World Counts. The World Counts, 2016. Web. 02 Dec. 2016. <http://www.theworldcounts.com/stories/Child-Labor-Facts-and-Statistics&gt;.

“The Industrial Revolution.” The Industrial Revolution. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Dec. 2016. <https://industrialrevolution.wordpress.com/&gt;.


My sources support my thesis because there is an ongoing theme throughout all six sources. They all address child labor during the American Industrial Revolution. This includes information and facts about child labor, factories, regulations, and laws.


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