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Factory Workers Of The North Vs. Slaves Of The South

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Factory Workers of the North vs. Slaves of the South

When Samuel Slader built the first textile mill in America in1789, he had no idea that what he created would not just be a place for manufacture, but a hell for the people who worked there as well. During the 1800s when slavery was booming, southerners rationalized their actions by declaring that factory workers of the North had worse lives than the slaves of the south. Northerners would reject this idea, but in reality it was the truth. Northerners felt that because of the heat and the notorious way slaves were treated, they had it worse; however, what they did not realize was that factory workers not only had to go extended periods of time without seeing their family or friends, but were also extremely fatigued due to the gruesome work hours and had to constantly work with dangerous machinery.

Northern factory workers had little to no spare time to spend with their family or friends. Because most large plantations had been erect for decades, most slaves were born, brought up, married, and had started new families on the same plantation their whole life. These slaves lived and worked with their family and friends every day of their life. So while slaves enjoyed the company of the ones they loved everyday, factory workers longed for just a few hours with their families or friends. Because of the extensive hours northern factory workers labored, they were extremely exhausted and whatever chance they got to be away from the factory was spent sleeping. The factory owner may reason that those few hours could be used to spend time with family and friends but, in reality, they were undisputedly needed for sleep in order to have the minimal attention and alertness needed for the job the next day.

On plantations in the South slaves were seen as valuable property. The owner had to pay a price for the slave, and therefore did not want him to fall sick or become injured. It is because of this that slaves commonly only worked during the day hours and slept at night, in order to have the energy to carry out the next day's tasks. Factory workers on the other hand, were not a valuable possession and factory owners could careless if their workers were feeling ill or exhausted. They were forced to work long hours and often times left with only two to four hours of sleep until they were obligated to return to the factory. With the lack of sleep and fatigue, it is easy to lose focus in the procedure or action one is supposed to be doing, resulting in possible injury or even death.

Unlike slaves of the South, factory workers were constrained to working with dangerous machinery at all times. Because of the poor economic state of the country, there were



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