ancestryink fisherman

Friday, July 6, 2012

Child Labor in 1880

Currently researching the Dionne family from Prince Edward Island, Canada, who immigrated to the U.S.

Lewiston/Auburn, sister cities in Maine, were inundated by Canadians during the 1800's due to the industrial activity taking place there along the Androscoggin River.  Opportunities for work were abundant.  A section of Lewiston became known as "Little Canada."  The Bates Mill, a textile mill, was one of the largest employers and possibly where the Dionnes worked.

Their 1880 census record for the town of Lewiston, Maine shows the two younger children - Elise and....Elise (this is a son), ages 13 and 14, as working in the cotton mill along with their father Theophile, and older siblings Caroline, Henrietta and Emma...

13 and 14 years old...what were you doing at that age?

My kids were in theater programs, taking riding lessons, going to school, swimming in the ocean in the summer with their friends, doing art projects, and working part time jobs during the tourist season for extra spending money -  and not to support their family.

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