Child Employment Commission, 1841:: Thomas Thornton

 

No. 9.- Thomas Thornton, aged 18 years.

     Wages 9s. a week, weekly wage.
Went to day-school till eight years old; can read and write, but not cast much; laked up and down for two years; went to the pits as a hurrier at 10 years old; did not like the pits; was always hurting himself; men never beat him; was in the pits six years; earned about 8s. a-week; came into the forge at 16; this was his own doing; likes the forge better; forge is hardish work, but does not hurt him; has never had bad health since he went into the forge, but had in the pits; draws his own wages, and gives it to his mother; does not like night-work; cannot say it makes any difference in his health; sleeps well at nights; mother calls him up; gets up without trouble; feels to have had sleep enough; men never strike him in the forge; if a man struck him, overlooker would send the man home; has potatoes and meat for dinner generally, and butter and bread or cheese and bread for supper; has always enough to eat, is never pinched; plays about in summer evenings; is not too tired with work to play; does not go to a night-school. If he had more set before him to eat would not eat it, has enough.
Sometimes goes to church; has two sets of clothes; goes to church once or twice a month.
Some boys in the forge are ill, have pains in their head; does not know what it is with; it is not with too hard work; may be with getting something to drink, some of them do.
Never cries, has nothing to cry about; has never been to a public-house except to get change for wages.

     Washes his hands and face clean when he goes home; has not more than a quarter of an hour at once for dinner as the forge would go out, but has a quarter of an hour every heat of the forge nine times a day; does not go home to dinner: no boys in the forge go home to dinner.

 

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