Page:Historical Catechism of American Unionism.pdf/32

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106. What were these schemes?
Owenism, which had a revival following 1837. It assumed forms differing somewhat from Robert Owens colony, established at Harmony, Ind., in 1826. The most prominent of its intellectual leaders in the revival were: Emerson, Channing, Brownson, Brisbane, Greeley, Weitling. There were many others, but to these belongs the distinction of greatest prominence.
107. What was the nature of their schemes?
Principally co-operative undertakings, but they were not in accord with one another.
108. What were the real wage workers doing?
In 1844 a delegate convention attended by delegations from several states inaugurated the New England Working Men's Association. At its second convention the co-operative associationists dominated. Robert Owen (England), Wm. H. Channing, and Horace Greeley were among the speakers. Another convention was held in the fall of 1845. This convention endorsed co-operative enterprises, and political action. The 1846 convention changed the name to the Labor Reform League of New England. After the 1847 convention this organization disintegrated, the co-operators going into the New England Protective Union, and the others taking part in the Industrial Congresses.
109. Did the organization effect anything?
As an evidence of the working class ambition to achieve the 10 hour day, which was its principal feature, it undoubtedly impressed the employers and the workers. As soon as one ten-hour organization was disposed of, another took its place. We find New Hampshire passing the first ten-hour law in 1847, with qualifications. Pennsylvania followed with a restricted ten-hour law in 1848; Maine in 1848; but agriculture was not included; Ohio in 1852; Rhode Island in 1851, a qualified ten-hour law; California 1851. Georgia passed a law in 1853 making the legal day "from sunrise to sunset for all white persons under the age of twenty-one years".
110. What is meant by "A Qualified Ten-Hour Day Law?"
Longer hours were permitted where contracts were entered into for more than ten hours per day. If a worker signed a contract to work eleven, twelve, or