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Photograph of miners (Falkirk Museums and SCRAN)

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JOBS
Work in mines in the 1830s was hard and dangerous.

Often whole families worked down the pit. Those who dug the coal (hewers) were paid by the amount of coal carried to the surface. Hewers therefore often paid their wives and children to carry the coal. These workers, coal bearers and putters, worked extremely hard for long periods of time. Sources 1A and 1B look at the jobs these workers did.

There are two sources in this section.

Source 1A
Report on the employment of children in mines.
Click to view Source 1A
Source 1A is part of a report written by R.H. Franks on the employment of children in mines. It was produced in 1842.

Click to enlarge the image, then answer the following questions.

Questions

  1. Read about Janet Cumming in paragraph 20. How long did Janet work in the mine each day?

  2. How heavy was the creel that Janet carried?

  3. Did Janet Cumming enjoy her job? Give evidence to support your answer.

  4. What made Isabella fall asleep while working?

  5. Why was it uncomfortable for Isabella to work underground?

  6. How does the evidence of Agnes Moffat agree with that of Janet Cumming and Isabella Read?
Source 1B
Report on the employment of children in mines.
Click to view Source 1B
Source 1B is also from the Report of the Children's Employment Commission in 1842.

Click to enlarge the image, then answer the following questions.

Questions

  1. Describe the work done by putters in the mines.

  2. How useful is Source 1B as evidence of the work done by children in mines in 1842?
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