The Waltham System In The 1800's

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Lowell’s Waltham System A. Women and their jobs The Waltham System was based on employing young, unmarried women in textile mills. These women were chosen from farms all around New England. Usually when women came to work, they usually stayed for an average of a year or two. With a similar distinction of a college dormitory, these women were sent in company boardinghouses which were soon the core of social life. However; as the boardinghouses was a great place for social interaction, the supervisions of the boardinghouses were very strict. (1) The wages for the women averaged around $2.50 to $3.25 a week. Having most of the money they made a week gone due to the cost of room and board, usually the rest of the money was sent home or was spent on what ever they wanted. The women’s jobs consisted of working in a textile factory spinning cotton, linen, or other fibers into thread. The hours these women worked usually consisted of a 70 hour work week. In their off time, they usually spent their leisure decorating the factory with plants, to organized sewing circles. While working for Lowell, these women, while on the job, were…show more content…
Because of the competitiveness of other textile mills, the mills increase the standard of living. Not only that but also the working conditions became difficult to maintain. As competitiveness grew, the work environment in the mills started to deteriorate. The Mills because extremely hot on the summertime, and cold and damp in the winter. In addition the mills were poorly lit and not correctly ventilated. In the year 1834, women from several different mills started to protest against the wages that were cut from them. This eventually led to the rise of the “Factory Girl Association.” As time passed, conditions continued to worsen at mills and the protests began to thicken.

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