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Tuesday, 8 February 2011

The Children History Forgot

Once upon a time, Britain forged a mighty industrial empire: built with the blood, sweat and tears of society’s most vulnerable members. The Children History Forgot explores young people’s working lives during the late Georgian and Victorian eras, when boys and girls created almost every item in our ancestors’ homes: bricks, glass, cutlery, candles, lace, cotton and more.

All over Britain, from the coal mines of Wales to the flax mills of Ireland, children toiled in factories and workshops, underground and on the land. A chosen few like Samuel Slater began new lives in America but thousands of others have been forgotten by history: killed by unguarded machinery or poisoned by metal or pottery dust. Many of these were conscript workers: pauper apprentices trapped by their poverty.
My book tells the story of the long, heartbreaking fight for reform. The story of men like Lord Shaftesbury, Richard Oastler and the tireless factory inspectors who battled, not only to improve youngsters’ working conditions and opportunities for education, but also to change society’s attitudes towards childhood. The Children History Forgot takes a fresh look at the true cost of Britain’s industrial success story.

You can pre-order The Children History Forgot at Amazon UK here, or here if living in the US.

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