Many children were used as laborers for companies. Companies used children because they were cheaper, and would be less likely to revolt against the company or object to the overseer.
Hi! I'm taking photos of...the machine.
Okay, go ahead. Isn't it amazing?
The children were put through harsh factory conditions. They worked long hours, were malnourished, and worked in unsafe conditions.
Lewis Hine snuck into factories to take pictures of the children. He wanted the nation to know what the children were going through. He thought children deserved to play and go to school, not work in a factory.
On page 14 of the play it says, "As public outrage grew, factory owners became more suspicious of Hine and his camera. It made getting into factories harder." Due to being recognized, Hine often disguised himself to get the pictures.
On the slideshow it said, "In 1905, the Child Labor Act in Kansas banned children from being factory workers, meat packers, and miners." Finally, in 1917 the national child labor law was passed. The slideshow also said, "To work in any occupation that was considered dangerous you had to be at least 16." As you can see, it took a lot for children to experience the freedom many children have today.