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Workplace Health and Gender among Cotton Workers in America and Britain, c.1880s–1940s*

  • Janet Greenlees (a1)
Abstract
Abstract

This article clarifies the differences between occupational health and workplace health and reveals how the two overlap. It unravels a multi-layered narrative about cotton textile workers’ understandings and experiences of ill-health at work in America and Britain, utilizing a combination of oral histories, government documents, company and union records, and the trade press. It aims to identify the multiple influences on contemporary debates about health at work. Contrary to current historiography, I argue that gender was only occasionally important to such discussions among workers, and that gender did not significantly influence their responses to unhealthy conditions. Workers’ understandings of, and responses to, workplace hazards were individual and related to knowledge about risk, ill-health and socioeconomic factors. American and British workers’ understandings of and responses to their working environment reveals more convergence than divergence, suggesting a universal human response to the health risks of work that is not significantly influenced by national or industrial constraints, or by gender.

TRANSLATED ABSTRACTS

FRENCH – GERMAN – SPANISH

Janet Greenlees. Le lieu de travail, la santé et le genre parmi les travailleurs du coton en Amérique et en Grande-Bretagne de 1880 à 1940

Cet article clarifie les différences entre la santé professionnelle et la santé sur le lieu de travail, et montre comment l’une et l’autre se recoupent. L’auteur démêle un récit à plusieurs niveaux sur les travailleurs textiles du coton et sur les interprétations et les expériences de la mauvaise santé et du travail en Amérique et en Grande-Bretagne, en utilisant une combinaison d’histoires orales, de documents gouvernementaux, de dossiers de sociétés et de syndicats, ainsi que la presse commercial. Il vise à identifier les influences multiples des débats contemporains sur la santé au travail. Contrairement à l’historiographie actuelle, je soutiens que le genre n’était important qu’occasionnellement à ces discussions parmi les travailleurs, et que le genre d’influença guère leurs réponses à des conditions malsaines, les interprétations et les réponses des travailleurs aux accidents du travail furent individuelles et liées aux connaissances sur les risques, la mauvaise santé et des facteurs socioéconomiques. La compréhension des travailleurs américains et britanniques de leur environnement de travail et leurs réponses à celui-ci présentent plus de convergence que de divergences, suggérant une réponse humaine universelle aux risques sanitaires du travail, sans être influencée par des contraintes nationales ou industrielles, ou par le genre.

Traduction: Christine Plard

Janet Greenlees. Betriebliche Gesundheitsförderung und Gender unter den Baumwollarbeitern und -arbeiterinnen Amerikas und Großbritanniens von den 1880er bis zu den 1940er Jahren

Dieser Beitrag erläutert die Unterschiede zwischen Arbeitsschutz und betrieblicher Gesundheitsförderung und zeigt die Überschneidungen zwischen beiden Bereichen auf. Der Beitrag entwirrt ein vielschichtiges Narrativ über die Auffassungen und Erfahrungen der Baumwollarbeiter und -arbeiterinnen Amerikas und Großbritanniens hinsichtlich der Frage der Berufskrankheiten. Dabei wird auf oral-history-Quellen ebenso zurückgegriffen wie auf Regierungsdokumente, Firmen- und Gewerkschaftsunterlagen sowie die Branchenpresse. So sollen die verschiedenen Einflüsse bestimmt werden, von denen zeitgenössische Debatten um Gesundheit am Arbeitsplatz geprägt wurden. In Abgrenzung zur gegenwärtigen Geschichtsschreibung wird die These vertreten, Gender sei für entsprechende Diskussionen, wie sie unter Arbeitern und Arbeiterinnen geführt wurden, nur gelegentlich von Bedeutung gewesen: Genderfragen hatten keinen nennenswerten Einfluss darauf, wie die Arbeiter und Arbeiterinnen auf gesundheitsschädliche Arbeitsbedingungen reagierten. Die Auffassungen von arbeitsbedingten Gesundheitsgefahren, die Arbeiter und Arbeiterinnen an den Tag legten, waren, wie auch die Reaktionen auf solche Risiken, individueller Natur und hingen zusammen mit dem Wissen um Risiken, Krankheit und sozioökonomische Faktoren. Die Auffassungen und Reaktionen amerikanischer und britischer Arbeiter konvergierten häufiger als sie divergierten, was die Annahme einer allgemein menschlichen Reaktion auf arbeitsbedingte Gesundheitsrisiken nahelegt: eine Reaktion, die nicht auf nennenswerte Weise von nationalen oder industriespezifischen Zwängen geprägt war, und auch nicht von Genderfragen.

Übersetzung: Max Henninger

Janet Greenlees. Salud laboral y género entre los trabajadores del algodón en Estados Unidos y Gran Bretaña, c.1880–1940

Este artículo aporta luz sobre las diferencias entre la salud ocupacional y la salud laboral y revela la forma en que ambas se solapan. El texto deshace la maraña de una narrativa con múltiples estratos sobre la visión y las experiencias de los trabajadores textiles del algodón con enfermedades laborales en Estados Unidos y Gran Bretaña, haciendo uso de una combinación de historias orales, documentos gubernamentales, archivos de empresa y de sindicatos y la prensa económica. Se trata de identificar las numerosas influencias en los debates contemporáneos sobre la salud en el trabajo. De forma diferente a lo que plantea la historiografía actual, en el artículo defendemos que la cuestión de género fue sólo ocasionalmente importante en las discusiones entre los trabajadores y que no tuvo una influencia significativa en sus reacciones ante las deficientes condiciones laborales. Las visiones de los trabajadores, y sus respuestas a, los riesgos en los espacios de trabajo fueron planteadas de forma individual y se relacionan con el conocimiento que se tenía sobre los factores de riesgo, sobre las enfermedades y sobre el ámbito socioeconómico. Las visiones que los trabajadores estadounidenses y británicos tenían de su entorno laboral, y las reacciones que promovían, revelan muchas más convergencias que divergencias, lo que permite sugerir una respuesta humana universal frente a los riesgos para la salud en el trabajo que no se encuentra influencia de forma significativa por los límites nacionales o industrial, ni tampoco por las cuestiones de género.

Traducción: Vicent Sanz Rozalén

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Corresponding author
E-mail: Janet.Greenlees@gcu.ac.uk
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*

The author would like to thank participants at the “Women in Changing Labor Markets” Workshop at Lund University, 2015, for their comments on a previous version, “‘We were never told anything like that’: Women Textile Operatives and Unhealthy Working Environments in America and Britain, c. 1870–1960”, as well as the editors and three anonymous reviewers for their feedback.

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1 E.g. Lewis Jane, The Politics of Motherhood: Child and Maternal Welfare in England, 1900–1939 (London, 1980); Dwork Deborah, War is Good for Babies and Other Young Children: A History of the Infant and Child Welfare Movement in England, 1898–1918 (London, 1989); Fildes Valerie, Marks Lara and Marland Hilary (eds), Women and Children First: International Maternal and Infant Welfare, 1870–1945 (London, 1992); Koven Seth and Michel Sonya (eds), Mothers of a New World: Maternalist Politics and the Origins of Welfare States (New York, 1993); Koven Seth and Michel Sonya, “Womanly Duties: Maternalist Politics and the Origins of Welfare States in France, Germany, Great Britain, and the United States, 1880–1920”, American Historical Review, 95, 4 (1990), pp. 10761108 .

2 Harrison Barbara, Not Only the ‘Dangerous Trades’: Women’s Work and Health in Britain, 1880–1914 (London, 1996); Malone Carolyn, Women’s Bodies and Dangerous Trades in England, 1880–1914 (Woodbridge, 2003).

3 E.g. Sklar Kathryn, “The Historical Foundations of Women’s Power in the Creation of the American Welfare State, 1830–1930”, in Koven and Michel, Mothers of a New World, pp. 4393 ; Meckel Richard, Save the Babies: American Public Health Reform and the Prevention of Infant Mortality, 1850–1929 (Baltimore, MD, 1990); Kenney Sally, For Whose Protection? Reproductive Hazards and Exclusionary Policies in the United States and Great Britain (Ann Arbor, MI, 1993).

4 Hamilton Alice, “Possibilities and Limitations of Employment of Women in Industry”, Monthly Bulletin of the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry, 5 (1918), pp. 3641 , 37, 39, as cited in Hepler Allison, “From Muller to Johnson Controls: Mothers and Workplace Health in the US, from Protective Labour Legislation to Fetal Protection Policies”, in Janet Greenlees and Linda Bryder (eds), Western Maternity and Medicine, 1880–1990 (London, 2013), pp. 147162 , 147.

5 Hepler Allison, Women in Labor: Mothers, Medicine, and Occupational Health in the United States, 1890–1980 (Columbus, OH, 2000).

6 E.g. Alice Kessler-Harris, Out to Work: A History of Wage Earning Women in the United States; Lehrer Susan, Origins of Protective Labor Legislation for Women, 1905–1925 (Albany, NY, 1987); Koven and Michel, ‘Womanly Duties’; Skocpol Theda, Protecting Soldiers and Mothers: Political Origins of Social Policy in the United States (Cambridge, MA, 1995).

7 McIvor Arthur and Johnston Ronald, Miners’ Lung: A History of Dust Disease in British Coal Mining (Aldershot, 2007); McIvor Arthur and Johnston Ronald, “Dangerous Work, Hard Men and Broken Bodies: Masculinity in the Clydeside Heavy Industries, c.1930–1970s”, Labour History Review, 69, (2004), pp. 135152 ; Aldrich Mark, Death Rode the Rails: American Railroad Accidents and Safety, 1828–1965 (Baltimore, MD, 2006); Bufton Mark and Melling Joseph, “‘A Mere Matter of Rock’: Organised Labour, Scientific Evidence and British Government Schemes for Compensation of Silicosis and Pneumoconiosis among Coalminers, 1926–1940”, Medical History, 49 (2005), pp. 155178 ; Rosner David and Markowitz Gerald, Deadly Dust: Silicosis and the Politics of Occupational Disease in Twentieth-Century America (Princeton, NJ, 1991).

8 Ineson Antonia and Thom Deborah, “T.N.T. Poisoning and the Employment of Women Workers in the First World War”, in Paul Weindling (ed.), The Social History of Occupational Health (London, 1985), pp. 89107 ; Nugent Angela, “The Power to Define a New Disease: Epidemiological Politics and Radium Poisoning”, in David Rosner and Gerald Markowitz (eds), Dying for Work: Workers’ Safety and Health in Twentieth-Century America (Bloomington, MN, 1987), pp. 177191 ; Braybon Gail, Women Workers in the First World War (London, 1981); Clark Claudia, Radium Girls: Women and Industrial Health Reform, 1910–1935 (Chapel Hill, NC, 1997).

9 Tweedale Geoffrey and Bowden Sue, “Poisoned by the Fluff: Compensation and Litigation for Byssinosis in the Lancashire Cotton Industry”, Journal of Law and Society, 29:4 (2002), pp. 560579 ; Bowden Sue and Tweedale Geoffrey, “Mondays without Dread: The Trade Union Response to Byssinosis in the Lancashire Textile Industry in the Twentieth Century”, Social History of Medicine, 16:1 (2003), pp. 7995 ; McIvor Arthur, “State Intervention and Work Intensification. The Politics of Occupational Health and Safety in the British Cotton Industry, c.1880–1914”, in Ad Knotter et al. (eds), Labour, Social Policy, and the Welfare State (Amsterdam, 1997); Fowler Alan, Lancashire Cotton Operatives and Work, 1900–1950: A Social History of Lancashire Cotton Operatives in the Twentieth Century (Aldershot, 2003), chapter 6; Botsch Robert, Organizing the Breathless: Cotton Dust, Southern Politics, and the Brown Lung Association (Lexington, KY, 1993); Levenstein Charles, et al., The Cotton Dust Papers: Science, Politics, and Power in the “Discovery” of Byssinosis in the U.S. (Amityville, NY, 2002); Charles Levenstein, et al., “Labor and Byssinosis, 1941–1969”, in Rosner and Markowitz, Dying for Work, pp. 208–223; Hallett Christine, et. al., “The Struggle for Sanitary Reform in the Lancashire Cotton Mills, 1920–1970”, Journal of Advanced Nursing, 48, 3 (2004), pp. 257265 .

10 For a recent historiographical summary, see Raw Louise, Striking a Light: The Bryant and May Matchwomen and their Place in History (London, 2011), Chapter 2.

11 Melling Joseph, “The Risks of Working and the Risks of Not Working: Trade Unions, Employers and Responses to the Risk of Occupational Illness in British Industry, c.1890–1940s”, ESRC Centre for Analysis of Risk and Regulation Discussion Paper, 12 (2003), pp. 1434 .

12 For health in the southern industries, see Botsch, Organizing the Breathless, and Beardsley Edward, A History of Neglect: Health Care for Blacks and Mill Workers in the Twentieth-Century South (Knoxville, TN, 1987).

13 Greenlees Janet, “The Dangers Attending these Conditions are Evident”: Public Health and the Working Environment of Lancashire Textile Communities, c.1870–1939”, Social History of Medicine, 26, 4 (2013), pp. 672694 , 676, 678.

14 Census of Massachusetts, (1905), part III, p. 50, as cited in “The Mortality from Consumption in Dusty Trades”, The Bulletin of the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, Vol. XVII 1908, No. 791–A (Washington, DC, 1909), p. 740.

15 Tweedale Geoffrey, “Occupational Health and the Region: The Medical and Socio-legal Dimensions of Respiratory Disease and Cancer in the Lancashire Textile Industry”, in John Wilson (ed.), King Cotton: A Tribute to Douglas A. Farnie (Lancaster, 2009), pp. 325341 ; Levenstein, et al., Cotton Dust.

16 Crooks Eddie, The Factory Inspectorate: A Legacy of the Industrial Revolution (Stroud, 2005), pp. 823 .

17 Wyke Terry, “Mule Spinners’ Cancer”, in Alan Fowler and Terry Wyke, (eds), The Barefoot Aristocrats: A History of the Amalgamated Association of Operative Cotton Spinners (Littleborough, 1987), pp. 184196 .

18 McIvor, “State Intervention”, pp. 138, 139; McIvor Arthur, History of Work in Britain, 1880–1950 (London, 2001), p. 120

19 Crum F. S., “The Health and Mortality of the Cotton-Mill Operatives of Blackburn, England”, New York Medical Record, 11 August (1906), p. 19 .

20 McIvor, History of Work, p. 129.

21 State House News Service, as cited in the Lowell Courier, 21 January 1915.

22 Textile World Journal, 7 February 1920, p. 200.

23 The Textile Mercury (hereafter TM), 9 May 1914, p. 369.

24 TM, 30 May 1914, p. 438; see also 10 May 1890; 3 January 1891, pp. 5–6; and 13 August 1914.

25 Roberts Elizabeth, A Woman’s Place: An Oral History of Working-Class Women, 1890–1940 (Oxford, 1984), pp. 4647 .

26 Blewett Mary, The Last Generation: Work and Life in the Textile Mills of Lowell, Massachusetts, 1910–1960 (Amherst, MA, 1990), p. 31 .

27 Oliver Thomas, The Dangerous Trades (London, 1902), p. 273 .

28 Schilling R. S. F., “Byssinosis in Cotton and other Textile Workers”, Lancet, 2 (1956), pp. 261265 and 319–325.

29 Peirce Paul. S., “Industrial Diseases”, The North American Review, 1 October 1911, pp. 529540 , 532.

30 Grinnold R. E., Occupational Hearing Loss: Workers Compensation Under State & Federal Programs, (Ann Arbor, MI, 1979), p. 4 .

31 Mills Roy, “Noise Reduction in a Textile Weaving Mill”, American Industrial Hygiene Association Journal, 30:1 (1969), pp. 7176 .

32 Weston H. and Adams S., The Performance of Weavers under Varying Conditions of Noise, Industrial Health Research Board, Report No. 70 (London, 1935).

33 “Occupational Deafness”, BMJ, 2 (3959), 21 November 1936, p. 1037.

34 Lowell National Historic Park, LOWE 5130 Sophia Eaton to her mother, Mrs Betsey Eaton, 6 July 1847; LOWE 14425, Lydia A. Dudley to cousin Miss Olive Elzadah Dudley, Raymond, NH, 22 August 1847.

35 Mulligan Mary T., “Epilogue to Lawrence: The 1912 Strike in Lowell, Massachusetts”, in Mary Blewett, (ed.), Surviving Hard Times: The Working People of Lowell (Lowell, MA, 1982), pp. 79103 , 87.

36 National Child Labor Committee, “The Child in the Cotton Mill”, (New York: Pamphlet 260, March 1916), p. 5; University of Lowell, Center for Lowell History, Working People of Lowell (WPOL), 85.26, Grace Burke.

37 Center for Lowell History, Mill Workers of Lowell (MWOL), 84.01 Valentine Chartrand.

38 MWOL, 84.09 and 86.31, Sidney Muskovitz.

39 Aldrich Mark, “Mortality from Byssinosis among New England Cotton Mill Workers, 1905–1912”, Journal of Occupational Medicine, 24, 2 (1982), pp. 977980 .

40 Northwest Sound Archive (NWSA): Mona Morgan, b. 1922, cardroom worker, 1936–1946 and 1953–1970s; see also NWSA: Elsie Hansford, ring-, card- and winding room worker.

41 NWSA: Ethel Fielding, ring room worker, 1941–1980s.

42 NWSA: May Mitchell, cardroom worker, 1936–1946.

43 Tweedale and Bowden, “Poisoned by the Fluff” and “Mondays without Dread”.

44 E.g. MWOL: 85.01 Rene Desjardins; 84.04, Blanche Graham; 85.03, Edward Hart; 84.02, Mabel Mangan; 85.04, Diane Ouellette; 84.08, Narcissa Hodges.

45 MWOL: 85.01 Rene Desjardins; WPOL: 85.29, John Falante.

46 MWOL: 84.02 Mabel Mangan; WPOL: 85.26, Grace Burke.

47 MWOL: 84.08 Narcissa Hodges.

48 Nation on Film, 2003, George Wrigley. Tom Young noted: “Within the first week, I was violently sick. The noise levels were extremely high. But it was a fact of life, you just went in”. Raymond Watson recalled “They just didn’t seem to bother about people goin’ deaf”.

49 NWSA: Marjory Shaw.

50 Morgan Nigel, Deadly Dwellings: The Shocking Story of Housing and Public Health in a Lancashire Cotton Town: Preston from 1840–1914 (Preston, 1993); Greenlees, “The dangers”.

51 Cumbler John, Working-Class Community in Industrial America: Work, Leisure, and Struggle in Two Industrial Cities, 1880–1930 (Westport, CT, 1979), pp. 105109 , 114–117, 135.

52 Mrozowski Stephen, et al., Living on the Boott: Historical Archaeology at the Boott Mills Boardinghouses, Lowell, Massachusetts (Amherst, MA, 1996), pp. 6064 ; Blewett, Last Generation, pp. 31–32.

53 Cumbler, Working Class, pp. 118, 122, 132, 134; U.S. Department of Labor, Women and Child Wage Earners, p. 754; Massachusetts Child Labor Bulletin (Boston, 1917), p. 214.

54 Pope Rex, Unemployment and the Lancashire Weaving Area, 1920–1938 (Preston, 2000), pp. 7375 ; Glucksmann Miriam, Cottons and Casuals: The Gendered Organisation of Labour in Time and Space (Durham, 2000).

55 Roberts Robert, The Classic Slum: Salford Life in the First Quarter of the Century (Manchester, 1971; 1977 rpt), pp. 108109 ; 110; Oddy Derek, “Urban Famine in Nineteenth Century Britain: The Effect of the Lancashire Cotton Famine on Working-Class Diet and Health”, Economic History Review, 36:1 (1983), pp. 6886 .

56 Howarth O., (ed.), Textile Voices: Mill Life This Century (Bradford, 1989), p. 31 ; McIvor, History of Work, pp. 140–141.

57 Hallett Christine, et al., “Industry and Autonomy in Early Occupational Health Nursing: The Welfare Officers of the Lancashire Cotton Mills in the Mid-Twentieth Century”, Nursing History Review, 14 (2006), pp. 89109 , 104.

58 Smith Thomas R., The Cotton Textile Industry of Fall River, Massachusetts: A Study of Industrial Localization (New York, 1944), p. 58 ; Fall River Historical Society, Granite Mills, Record Book of the Directors Meetings, 23 October 1911–31 December 1928, 23 December 1912.

59 Greenlees Janet, “‘Technological Change and Environmental Inequalities’: The New England Textile Industry, 1880-1930”, in G. Massard-Guilbaud and R. Rodger, (eds), Environmental and Social Justice in the City: Historical Perspectives (Winwick, 2011), pp. 249270 ; MWOL 85.04 Diane Ouellette; MWOL 85.03 Jean Rouses.

60 Gross Lawrence, The Course of Industrial Decline: The Boott Cotton Mills of Lowell, Massachusetts, 1835–1955 (Baltimore, MD, 1993), pp. 133138 , esp. 134; 136; 137; MWOL 84.04 Blanche Graham.

61 Roberts, Woman’s Place, pp. 46–47.

62 NWSA: Elsie Hansford; Hallett, et al., “Struggle”, p. 260; NWSA, Harvey Kershaw, “The conditions in the mill were very much dependent on the employer”; NWSA: Bill Disby and Joe Richardson, “Conditions always varied”.

63 E.g., MWOL: 84.04, Martha Doherty and Blanche Graham; 85.08, Raymond Gaillardetz; 85.03 Edward Hart; 84.02, Mabel Mangan.

64 E.g. Cotton Factory Times (hereafter CFT), 17 February 1911.

65 E.g. Blewett, Last Generation, pp. 152, 179; JG. Interview with Anon, April 2001.

66 Tomes Nancy, The Gospel of Germs: Men, Women, and the Microbe in American Life (Cambridge, MA, 1998); Greenlees, “Stop Kissing!”.

67 Roberts, Woman’s Place, p. 191. Moor Francesca, “‘Go and see Nell: She’ll put you right’: The Wisewoman and Working-Class Health Care in Early Twentieth-Century Lancashire”, Social History of Medicine, 26, 4 (2013), pp. 695714 , 707.

68 McGowen Charles, Sold American: Consumption and Citizenship, 1890–1945 (Chapel Hill, NC, 2006), pp. 3740 , 214–215.

69 The Graphic, 22 February 1899; CFT, 2 August 1918.

70 Available at http://en.inforapid.org/index.php?search=Beecham%27s%20Pills, last accessed 16 February 2015.

71 Moor, “Go and see Nell”; Roberts, Woman’s Place.

72 Moor, “Go and see Nell”, p. 706.

73 E.g. MWOL: 84.02, Mabel Mangan, “If anybody was sick, they’d go to Mrs Delehanty, and she’d have a remedy”.

74 The true story of Father John’s medicine, available at http://library.uml.edu/clh/Fath/Fath5.Html, last accessed 16 February 2015; Images of labels, available at http://img.groundspeak.com/waymarking/display/f0fa439c-0f1d-4ecb-9bfa-28af2c6bf357.jpg, last accessed 16 February 2015.

75 Hallett, et al., “Industry and Autonomy”, pp. 93, 94; “Departmental Committee on Humidity and Ventilation in Cotton Weaving Sheds, Minutes of Evidence and Appendices”, BPP 1909, XV, p. 699; Lancashire County Record Office (LRO): DDX 1145/1/1/3, Burnley Manufacturers’ Association, Minute Book, 25 June 1909–1 May 1919; Aug 15, 1911; LRO DDX 1115/1/6 Blackburn Employers’ Association Minute book 5 Oct. 1927–7 Sept. 1931; 11 March 1929.

76 Hallett, et al., “Industry and Autonomy”. Men also consulted welfare officers: NWSA: Bill Disby and Joe Richardson.

77 U. S. Department of Labor, Causes of Absence for Men and for Women in Four Cotton Mills, Bulletin of the Women’s Bureau, No. 69 (Washington DC, US Government Printing Office, 1929).

78 Greenlees Janet, “For the Convenience and Comfort of the Persons Employed by them’: The Lowell Corporation Hospital, 1839-1930”, Medical History, 57:1 (2013), pp. 4564 .

79 E.g. MWOL 84.04, Martha Doherty.

80 University of Lowell, Shifting Gears Collection, Lawrence. SG-LA-T509 William Beaulieu; MWOL 84.06, Camile Theriault.

81 Beardsley, History of Neglect, p. 195; Harriet Herring, Welfare Work in Mill Villages (Whitefish, MT, 1929), pp. 155–160.

82 MWOL 85.03, Jean Rouses.

83 NWSA: Elsie Hansford.

84 E.g. Lowell Courier-Citizen, 11 July 1912.

85 Lowell Courier-Citizen, 7 July and 8 July 1873; Vox Populi, 9 July 1873; Lowell Daily Courier, 7 July and 8 July 1873.

86 Mulligan, “Epilogue to Lawrence”, p. 95.

87 E.g. Lowell Courier-Citizen, 7 July 1873; 8 July 1873; 11 July 1912; and 16 July 1912; Lowell Daily Courier, 7 July 1873; Portland Transcript, 8 April 1854; New Bedford Evening Standard, 20 January 1898.

88 Historiographical discussion in Raw, Striking a Light, ch. 2.

89 White Joseph, The Limits of Trade Union Militancy: The Lancashire Textile Workers, 1910–1914 (Westport, CT, 1978), pp. 186200 .

90 LRO DDX1115/1/2 Blackburn Manufacturers’ Association, Minute Book, 26 November 1900; LRO DDX 1115/1/5 Blackburn Minute Book, 6 May 1925.

91 LRO DDX1145/1/1/1 Burnley, Minute Book, 29 May 1894–15 Nov. 1899, 11 November 1895; LRO DDX1123/6/2/130 Blackburn and District Power-Loom Weavers’, Winders’ & Warpers’ Association, Memorandum from Padiham Weavers’ Association, 24 September 1910, Robert Hargreaves, Sec. to J. Cross; LRO DDX1115/4/2 Blackburn and District Cotton Manufacturers’ Association, Letter Book 1906-1913, 18 November 1913.

92 LRO DDX1145/1/1/1 Burnley Manufacturers’ Minute Book 1895.

93 CFT, 18 January 1918; CFT, 1 February 1918; CFT 22 February 1918; LRO DDX1145/1/1/3 Burnley Manufacturers’ Association, Minute Book, 8 March 1918.

94 LRO DDX 1123/6/2/130 Blackburn and District Power-Loom Weavers’, Winders’ & Warpers’ Association, Letter from Jos Cross, David Shackleton and Fred Thomas of the Weavers’ Association, 30 November 1910.

95 Roberts, Woman’s Place, pp. 46–47.

96 Hill A. Bradford, Artificial Humidification in the Cotton Weaving Industry: Its Effect upon the Sickness Rates of Weaving Operatives, IFRB Report No. 48 (London: HMSO, 1927); Jackson J. (chair), Home Office Report of the Departmental Committee on Artificial Humidity in Cotton Cloth Factories (London: HMSO, 1928).

97 E.g. CFT, 29 June 1928 and 15 February 1929.

98 Weston and Adams, Performance.

99 McIvor, History of Work, p. 141 and Factory Inspectors Report 1937, p. 24.

100 The Manchester Guardian, 11 August 1932.

101 Fowler Alan and Fowler Lesley, The History of the Nelson Weavers’ Association (Nelson, 1984), pp. 7376 .

102 E.g. Skocpol Theda, Social Policy in the United States: Future Possibilities in Historical Perspectives (Princeton, NJ, 1995); Koven Seth, “Borderlands: Women, Voluntary Action, and Child Welfare in Britain, 1840 to 1914”, in Koven and Michel, Mothers, pp. 94135 ; Lewis, Politics of Motherhood; Dwork, War is Good for Babies; Koven and Michel, “Womanly Duties”.

103 E.g. Harrison, Not only the ‘Dangerous Trades’.

104 Johnston and McIvor, Miners’ Lung, esp. p. 310.

105 Dembe Allard, Occupation and Disease: How Social Factors Affect the Conception of Work-Related Disorders (New Haven, CT, 1996), pp. 321 .

* The author would like to thank participants at the “Women in Changing Labor Markets” Workshop at Lund University, 2015, for their comments on a previous version, “‘We were never told anything like that’: Women Textile Operatives and Unhealthy Working Environments in America and Britain, c. 1870–1960”, as well as the editors and three anonymous reviewers for their feedback.

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