(1771-1858) A very successful manufacturer in Scotland who testified against child labor and mistreatment of workers. Organized one of the largest and most visionary of the early national unions, the gnctu, or grand national consolidated trades union. Helped pass Factory Act of 1833, limiting work hours.
Factory Act of 1833
Limited the factory workday for children between 9 and 13 to 8 hours and that of adolescents between 14 and 18 to 12 hours-made no effort to regulate hours of work for children at home or in small businesses-children under 9 were to be enrolled by schools to be established by factory owners-broke pattern of whole families working together in the factory because efficiency required standardized shifts for all workers
Mines Act of 1842
Prohibited underground work for all women as well as for boys under ten.
An act outlawing unions and strikes
Grand National Consolidated Trades Union
Created by Robert Owen and formed in February 1834, its primary purpose was to coordinate a general strike for an 8 hour workday; unfortunately, members began to seek to fulfill the interests of his or her individual trade instead of seeking to fulfill the interests of the entire working-class body.
Attempt to by artisans and workers in Britain to gain the vote during 1840s; demands for reform beyond the reform bill of 1832 were incorporated into a series of petitions, called for all men to be able to vote and annual parliament elections; movement failed