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and by the various forms of old-age pensions and insurance against loss of wages by the strikes and suspensions of work so frequently occurring of late years. Of course, the most common form which the latter provision has taken is the relief afforded by tradesunions to their members, as in the great strikes now going on in this country and in England; and this fact calls attention to the rapid development of the trade-union principle since 1874. Like every great social change, this has been acompanied, and is still attended, with serious evils; but in a few countries— Great Britain, for example -- the organization of labor by unions has reached a stage where it is recognized as a distinct improvement on what preceded it, — the tyranny of organized capital over individual laborers, unable, for want of concert, to get fair dealing from their employers. In the United States this more peaceful stage has not been attained, as we are admonished by bloody encounters every few months between striking laborers and some form of organized capital. There has thus far been lacking in our country, among the workingmen, that practical organizing talent which is so conspicuous in the English character, many of the American trades-unions having for leaders persons of other nationalities, more logical than sensible, who suppose they must follow their premises, even when they lead to failure. M. de Rousiers, that very intelligent and painstaking French author, who undertook for the newly-established "Musée Social ” of Paris the investigation of trade-unionism in England, and accomplished that task so well last year, remarks justly that the English are the most practical and the most illogical men in the world, and hence their success in difficult emergencies.

Coincident with these forms of co-operation among the humbler members of society (building associations, benefit societies, tradesunions, etc.) there has been another gigantic form of association among the holders and wielders of capital, - what we designate as the Syndicate, or Trust. This belongs rather to political than social economy, since it depends for its continued existence upon the support or active tolerance of the legislature and the courts. It thrusts itself into our field of social economy, however, both by its benefits and its evils, reducing the cost of living in some directions, and thus promoting the pecuniary well-being of the poor, while it also kills out the humbler trade and the domestic industries, and tends to bring the mass of mankind into a semi-servile dependence on excessive wealth. This tendency to co-operations

or

of capital is often said to be irresistible; and thus we are advised to submit to them as private tyrannies, in order to avoid that form of the same thing which is urged upon us as “collectivism ” “socialism,” and which is much to be dreaded as a public tyranny, even more corrupt and debasing than the oligarchies of capital are showing themselves to be. I do not accept this dismal alternative, which is forced on us simply as a mode of that old fallacy of mistaking a tendency for an irresistible force. As in the realm of material things, so even more in human affairs, one force generates another to counteract it; and we never actually see the paradox of the physicists, — "an irresistible force impinging on an immovable body."

The counter-check to this threatening attitude of aggregated and arrogant wealth — this alleged conspiracy of the millionaires — is their invincible ignorance. Nothing so blinds the eyes of the mind as selfishness : egoism, says the French wit, is always unintelligent. It ever bends the bow until it snaps. This was the story of the Stuarts in England, the Bourbons and Napoleon in France, the slave-masters in America. It will not be otherwise, we may be sure, with the insolences of dropsical wealth in this country, should they grow to such an extent as to assail the institutions of popular government, at which so many of the millionaire class and their abettors in the scholarly class now rail and scold. Shakspere, himself sufficiently attracted to the side of power by his poetic imagination, was yet clear-sighted enough through the same faculty of insight to express, in a few pungent verses, the corrective which human nature and Divine Justice apply to the tumors of oppression :

"Till now you have gone on, and filled the time

With all licentious measure,- making your wills
The scope of justice : till now myself and such
As slept within the shadow of your power
Have wandered with our arms traversed, and breathed
Our sufferance vainly. Now the time is flush
When crouching marrow, in the bearer strong,
Cries of itself, ‘No more !' now breathless wrong
Shall sit and pant in your great chairs of ease.”

But the veterans of Social Science do not anticipate any such issue out of our present troubles. They look upon the excess of individual wealth, unchastened by any scruples about its acquisition or any obligations to its beneficent expenditure, as an

accidental excrescence in our civilization, no more to be honored or protected than the wens and protuberances of disease. Of decent and conscientious wealth they have no fears, - either that it will turn to oppression or become the victim of pillage. Against hurtful combinations of wealth or poverty nature has made provision, in the very selfishness and fraud or violence which makes such combinations. Our social and political system has too broad a base to be upset by transient gusts of popular feeling or undermined by unscrupulous avarice, trembling for its ill-gotten property or privilege. Our rich are growing richer,– too much so for their own peace of mind and ours, - but our poor are not growing poorer; and the great middle class will hold them from attacking one another, should they be foolish and wicked enough to try it.

THE TEXTILE SCHOOL AT LOWELL.

BY JOSEPH LEE, OF BROOKLINE, MASS.

[Read Friday morning.]

Last year we heard remarkably interesting testimony as to the value of the trade school from the point of view of the manufacturer, of the philanthropist, the schoolmaster, and the penologist. During his address Mr. S. N. D. North, Secretary of the National Association of Woollen Manufacturers, spoke of the Textile School at Lowell, then organizing under a law passed in 1895 by the State of Massachusetts. The law, which is given in full in the appendix, provides, briefly, that, when in any city or town having in operation at least 450,000 spindles, money should be appropriated or subscribed toward the establishment of a textile school, the State would subscribe an equal amount, the State's quota, however, not to exceed in any case $25,000

The cities to which this act applied are Lowell, Lawrence, New Bedford, and Fall River. In New Bedford they are starting a school, and in Lowell the school is in actual operation. The State has subscribed its $25,000, the city the same amount, and private persons, chiefly manufacturers, have added as much as the two put together, making in all $100,000. The school was opened on Feb. 1, 1897, with 142 scholars, and closed at the end of the term, on June 3, with 151. It is now being enlarged, and will next year be able to accommodate 250.

The school is divided into a day and an evening department, and is intended, generally speaking, for two classes of pupils. The day department is meant to serve as a sort of textile university for that part of the country. Its first application from a student, however, came from Bombay, India, so that its fame and usefulness are already considerably wider than the Merrimack Valley. It is similar in its scope and purpose to the famous textile school at Crefeld in Prussia, and is meant to give such instruction in the textile industry as may be the best possible preparation for those who are to be in any sense leaders in that line of manufacture,

to fit men to be manufacturers, foremen, superintendents, or designers. Its graduates will also be well fitted to become teachers in smaller schools when such shall be established among our minor manufacturing towns.

The studies in the day department are divided into four distinct courses, each occupying three years,-cotton manufacturing, woollen manufacturing, designing, and dyeing. The annual fee is $200.

In the evening department substantially the same ground as any one of the above courses can be covered - but, of course, less thoroughly — in six years at two evenings a week (or in three years at four evenings a week), the fee for each course of two evenings a week being $5 a year. Tools, books, etc., are extra, and cost from $2 upward per course. There were at the end of the year 27 day and 124 evening pupils, the latter being for the most part actually employed in the textile industry during the daytime.

The history of the starting of the school, its general purposes, and the principle upon which it is organized, can best be stated by the following quotation from a letter from Hon. James T. Smith, a trustee and clerk to the corporation, dated Sept. 1, 1897 :

The idea of an institution for instruction in textile manufacture was born of the desire to strengthen and extend the textile industry of the city, and to raise the grade of citizenship and increase the earning capacity of the artisan.

I spent some years in gathering data as to the character and practical usefulness to the industries of foreign technical schools; but it was not until the very clear, comprehensive, and practical reports on “German Technical and Trade Schools,” by J. C. Monaghan, Esq., United States Consul at Chemitz, Saxony, were published in the Consular Reports for August, 1894, that I felt fully equipped to bring the subject before the textile manufacturers generally, and justified in urging the establishment here of a textile school, in the interest of the industry and of those employed therein.

As the purpose of the Lowell Textile School is to give skill and consequent earning capacity in the leading industry of this Commonwealth, it may properly be classed as a trade-school. however, a high-grade trade-school, exhaustive in all processes of the industry to which it relates, and necessarily, therefore, of a limited class. It became such a school from necessity, the demand of the industry being for thorough instruction in the higher, finer, and more varied lines of textiles, as well as in the ordinary lines.

This required a full equipment for the manufacture of all fibres, a high-grade Department of Design, a thorough course in Gen

It is,

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