An Idyl of Work

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Osgood, 1875 - Women textile workers - 183 pages
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Story in verse of women's factory life in Lowell, Mass., about 1845.
 

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Page 32 - Not always to be here among the looms, — Scarcely a girl she knew expected that ; Means to one end their labor was, — to put Gold nest-eggs in the bank, or to redeem A mortgaged homestead, or to pay the way , Through classic years at some academy; More commonly to lay a dowry by For future housekeeping.
Page 115 - ... Spoke on the rostrum for herself, and such As felt aggrieved. Ruth did not like that course, Nor "strikes", that ever threatened. "Why should we, Battling oppression, tyrants be ourselves, Forcing mere brief concession to our wish? Are not employers human as employed? Are not our interests common? If they grind And cheat as brethren should not, let us go Back to the music of the spinning-wheel, And clothe ourselves at hand-looms of our own, As did our grandmothers. The very name Of 'strike' has...
Page 34 - Nahant's long reach, Blue-bordered Swampscott and Chelsea's wide Marshes, laid bare to the drenching tide, With a glimpse of Saugus spire in the west, And Maiden hilis wrapped in dreamy rest.
Page 35 - Of garden-produce and household goods. Crossing the fords, half-lost in the woods, By wolves and red-skins frightened all day. And the roar of lions, some histories say. If a craft for Boston were setting sail, Very few of a passage would fail Who had trading to do in the three-hilled town...
Page 107 - SO lovingly the clouds caress his head, — The mountain-monarch ; he, severe and hard, With white face set like flint horizon-ward ; They weaving softest fleece of gold and red, And gossamer of airiest silver thread, To wrap his form, wind-beaten, thunder-scarred. They linger tenderly, and fain would stay, Since he, earth-rooted, may not float away. He upward looks, but moves not ; wears their hues ; Draws them unto himself ; their beauty shares ; And sometimes his own semblance seems to lose, His...
Page 25 - THEY neither toil nor spin; And yet their robes have won A splendor never seen within The courts of Solomon. Tints that the cloud-rifts hold, And rainbow-gossamer, The violet's tender form enfold; No queen is draped like her. All heaven and earth and sea Have wrought with subtlest power, That clothed in purple she might be — This little fading flower. We, who must toil and spin, What clothing shall we wear?
Page 20 - Sweet fields, beyond the swelling flood, Stand dressed in living green ; So to the Jews old Canaan stood, While Jordan rolled between.
Page 26 - ... that the cloud-rifts hold, And rainbow-gossamer, The violet's tender form enfold; No queen is draped like her. All heaven and earth and sea Have wrought with subtlest power, That clothed in purple she might be — This little fading flower. We, who must toil and spin, What clothing shall we wear? The glorious raiment we shall win; Life shapes us, everywhere. God's inner heaven hath sun, And rain, and space of sky, Wherethrough for us his spindles run, His mighty shuttles fly. His seamless vesture...
Page 47 - When I first learned to doff bobbins, I just thought it play but when you do the same thing twenty times — a hundred times a day — it is so dull!
Page v - Larcom's which she describes in her preface as a "truthful sketch of factory life drawn from the memory of it during the time about thirty years since, when the work of the mills was done almost entirely by young girls from various parts of New England,

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