Labor During The Industrial Revolution

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The Industrial Revolution The industrial revolution can be marked as a time in our history where considerable change took place in the daily lives of Americans during the turn of the twentieth century. The hard back breaking conditions in which laborers were accustomed to drastically revolutionized with the introduction of the Industrial Revolution. There were many significant changes that affected the American people during the transition from agricultural way of life to an industrial way of living. The three main changes were class, transportation, and wages. These alone ignited the transition of the industrial revolution. One of the main events to transpire during the Industrial Revolution…show more content…
Although the laborers were working harder and longer, their wages did not reflect the changes in a positive manner. The large companies wanted an abundant amount of goods for a low cost. The only way for this to happen was to cut the wages of the laborers. Laborers tried to form labor unions to help stabilize the working conditions as well as the wage decline. By the late 1820s a variety of unions were involved in the effort to reduce the working day from 12 hours to 10. Although labor unions existed, the large companies were so powerful that most conditions for the laborers remained the same. Though ineffective as these first attempts were to organize a union, they revealed a need of the working people, for legal and economic protection from abusive employers. During the Civil War, the factory system was solely responsible for the prosperity of American production. The workers began to recognize the power of their employers, leading to a steady increase in local unions during the mid 19th century, thus forming the Nation Labor Union in 1866. This eventually persuaded Congress to pass an eight hour day for Federal workers. Opposition towards the labor union was a common feeling. of many Americans and large companies. There were several unsuccessful strikes against the large companies, but most of these strikes were inevitable. In 1892, steel workers tried to strike against Carnigie Steel Company, but ended up returning to work in the end. In 1894, members of American Railways went on strike with Pullaman Palace Company; a company that made rail road cars. The federal government sent in troops and ended the strike. Although the labor unions had not made a significant change, they increased their power at a federal level. Once the labor unions became more powerful, the large companies had to set a standard.
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