In 1800, Robert Owen assumed management of a successful cotton mill in the village of New Lanark, outside of Glasgow. Over the next 25 years, this industrial community became a primary site for experiments in social reform, based on Owen’s socialist philosophy. In 1815, Owen addressed Parliament in an open letter: Observations on the Effect of the Manufacturing System. In this essay, Owen argues that children should not fully enter the work force until they are at least 12 years old; he would also like to see the average working day shortened to 12 hours a day, six days a week.
Subscribe to our e-mail newsletter to receive updates.