Small children had to work in coal mines without candles if the family was too poor to buy candles and were beaten by miners if they fell asleep during the job. Young girls had to pull sledges or carts with coal all day long, deforming their pelvic bones and causing a lot of deaths during childbirth.
Safety hazards were everywhere, machines didn’t have any safety covers or fences or any protection and children as young as 5 years old were operating them daily. Ironworkers worked in temperatures of 130 degrees and higher every day. Accidents on the job happened on a daily basis.
Most people worked between 12 and 16 hours per day, six days a week, without any paid holidays or vacation. Wages were very low, women and children received less than half the wages of men and had to work the same amount of time. Children did not get any sunlight, physical activity, apart from work or education, which led to deformities and a shorter than average length.
Five to nine people lived in a single room which was as big as an apartment. This place is known as the slum.