« PreviousContinue »
bers work nine and ten hours a day. The How terribly dangerous this work is, Superintendent of the coal mining de- has been borne out by the testimony of a partment of a large Eastern railroad re- special agent of the United States Deports to the Commissioner of Labor: partment of Labor who gives the follow"Breaker boys at the coal mines re
ing incident: ceive from five to ten cent; an hour; "While I was in the vicinity of Scran
BY COURTESY AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF SOCIAL SERVICE.
TYPICAL SWEAT-SHOP ROOM.
the majority about eight cents an hour ton, last November, Charles Bieborich, a these boys are from twelve to fifteen fourteen year old boy, was killed in the years old.”
Gibbons Breaker, and before the machinThis report was made at the time of ery could be stopped the body was horthe anthracite coal strike.. The law now ribly mangled. The boy was engaged at requires them to be thirteen years of age. his regular duties, which consisted of The work is heart-breaking and back- 'tending the harbor,' that is, keeping the breaking enough for the little fellows at dirt and waste away from the rollers or thirteen, but not all of them are thirteen, cogs, when his end came. He was standby any means. The superintendent of ing on an iron flooring at the head way, schools of a borough in the vicinity of when he suddenly slipped and fell in the Wilkes-Barre says that out of a total of directica of the rollers. The ‘Breaker three hundred and fifty boys working in Boss' sprang to his rescue, and in a mothe breakers in his district, one hundred ment he reached the spot, in vain, for and sixty of them are certainly known to the boy's body was already half way in be less than thirteen years old.
the cogs. The horrifying sight chilled
the man's blood and for a second stunned lows, every one of them. They trudge him, as the body passed all the way into out early in the inorning to work their the rollers. It was but a lapse of a few nine or ten hours a day at the hardest minutes before everything in the building kind of labor, and they have the true was silent-every bit of machinery hav- home-born, American stamina which ing stopped-and willing hands started to makes them proud of it. take the body from its terrible death In the face of this spirit in the younghole; but this was found impossible until sters, how much greater becomes the all the machinery was loosened and dis- stinging curse of the new slaughter of placed."
the innocents. We, the American people, The silent, pitiful tragedy of it! A owe them an education and if we have little fellow fourteen years old, martyred any sense of justice left we will give it as he tries vainly to make a few pennies to them. We will see that the laws are to keep a starving soul and body together. enforced and that better and closer re
Like the boys in the glass-works, these strictions are placed upon this vile traffic breaker boys are uncomplaining martyrs in lisping children. We have only to reto industry. They are free born Ameri
member that the future earning capacity can citizens, half of them of the purest of every child who works before he is American stock. In these perilous industries they show the real stuff that they fourteen years of age is divided by two. are made of. They take whole-souled
And there are two million of these little American pride in their work. The
slaves whose very life is being sapped tragedy of it all is that they glory in their away by this frightful mortgage upon independence. They are manly little fel- their manhood.
How Jackson Saved the Eskimo
By Edward B. Clark
HEN the white man with by sharp circumstance to look upon the
Eskimos, the Aleuts, the clergyman, is the foster father and in a Thlingets and the rest, came in contact large sense the god father of the aborigwith the blessings of the Gospel and with inal people of Alaska. He studied conthe curses of rum and disease. It is ditions in the northern land and became perhaps logical from the church point convinced that unless the Eskimo were of view to regard it as better that a man given some means of earning their liveshould suffer in his physical lifetime than lihood other than that of their ancestral to be damned spiritually through eter- custom of following the chase, their end nity, but luckily for the Alaskans there was starvation. The natives depended
were some men, Christians of the right upon the wild animals of sea and land mind, who thought it would be only for all their necessaries of life, and the Gospel-like to save the Eskimo from suf- American clergyman found that with fering both before death and after death the advent of the white men the whales, —and these men seem to have found the the seals, the walruses and the caribou means of accomplishing the end.
were disappearing, as wild animals alThe reindeer seemingly has solved the ways disappear when the Caucasian, with problem of the temporal if not the eter- his perfected killing contrivances, gets on nal salvation of the Alaskan. He gets their trail. As another has put it: “Dr. his food, his raiment and his Gospel on Jackson saw that unless something was the reindeer range. He has been taught done at once the United States would
have to choose between feeding the 20,- ing of the condition of his fellowman 000 and more natives or letting them there was more sneering than praising. starve to death."
The good doctor was called a visionary, With Dr. Jackson to think was to act. and it was predicted that his reindeer, He knew that the Siberians who live in transplanted, either would die out of a climate much like that of Alaska were hand or, under new climatic conditions,
would fail to multiply and replenish the earth.
Fifteen years ago there were sixteen reindeer in Alaska ; today there are nearly 15,000 reindeer in Alaska, and the natives have been changed from ignorant hunters to intelligent herders, and it is entirely within the realm of reason that before a score of years has passed the Alaskans will be furnishing to the white Americans a large part of their animal food supply.
Herds of reindeer are now established, as the last report of the commissioner of education discloses, in the neighborhood
of Barrow, Kivalina, Kotzebue, Deering, LAPLANDERS ENGAGED IN SKINNING REINDEER.
and Shishmaref, along the Arctic coast;
Wales, Teller, Golofnin, Unalakleet, and self-supporting because they had their
Eaton, on the Bering Sea coast ; Gambell, herds of domesticated reindeer, an animal
on St. Lawrence Island, in Bering Sea; that is prolific, whose flesh is good for
Tanana and Koserefsky, on the Yukon food, whose hide is good for clothing and
River; Bethel, on the Kuskokwim River, whose strength, endurance and docility make it available either as a pack or as a draught "horse."
There was an object other than the mere desire to give food and clothing to the Eskimo in Dr. Jackson's plan for the bringing of reindeer into the country from Siberia. He studied the character of the natives and he came to the conclusion that nomads as they were, they were unfitted for any of the white man's vocations save that of herding. The Alaskans had found plenty of work in connection with the pursuit of the wild animals whose flesh and pelts enabled their captors to live. In other words the chase, with the Eskimo, was an industrial pursuit. It was the clergyman's belief that reindeer herding would interest the native and, while keeping his abode stationary, would at the same time give him the opportunity to roam the country within prescribed limits. It was fifteen years ago when under the supervision of Dr. Jackson sixteen reindeer were brought from Siberia across Bering Strait to a little island close to the mainland of Alaska. As usual, when a man
Dr. SHELDON JACKSON. begins a great enterprise for the better
The man who has saved the Eskimo.
and Iliamma, near Cook's Inlet, in south- ger of transportation in employing and ern Alaska.
directing the trained Eskimo herders and A new station has been established this teamsters. winter near Icy Cape on the shore of the The 'trading stations for reindeer Arctic Ocean between Point Barrow and herder apprentices are branches of the Point Hope. Eskimo herders with their public school system in Alaska. Bright reindeer have been transferred to this far young Eskimo men are selected and are northern point and another link has been placed in the schools for a period of five added to the chain of relay stations along years under skillful Finn or Lap instructthe coast of the
ors. In addition northern sea. The
to his food and reindeer industry
clothing the in Alaska in
prentice is given a general way is
two female rein-under the supervis
deer each year ion of the United
upon which he may States Bureau of
place his mark Education, which
and consider his is attached to the
private property, Department of the
subject to governInterior. Dr. Jack
ment control. son is the bureau's
When his apprengeneral agent of
ticeship is up he education in the
becomes a herder northern territory.
in real earnest and Under the direc
he is given fifty tion of the clergy
reindeer which he man-educator the
and Eskimo boys are
know as his' own. trained as reindeer
The reindeer, as herders and every
has been said, is of inducement is
service given them to en
draught a nima 1. ter the training sta
According to C. C. tions. While,as Dr.
Georgeson, a speJackson says, the
cial agent in original purpose in
charge of the Alasthe introduction of
ka agricultural exdomesticated rein
periment stations, deer into Alaska
the first notable exwas to assist in the
ample of the encivilization of the
durance of reinnatives and to help
deer in Alaska and them to a better
their adaptability and more certain
to winter travel method of gaining
was a trip made in a livelihood, yet the reindeer will prove the winter of 1896-97 by W. A. Kjellequally important to the white man who man while he was superintendent of the may seek a home or engage in business in Teller reindeer station. He left Port sub-Arctic Alaska.
Clarence in the middle of December, The ordinary white man is unwilling 1896, and traveled southward to the Kusto undergo the drudgery of herding in kokwim River, about 1,000 miles disthat rigorous climate and unwilling to tant, and returned to the station April work for the small compensation that is 25, having accomplished 2,000 miles paid for such service. . He can do better. through a rough and barren country, His directive ability can be more profit- in the worst season of the year, the ably employed as merchant, or as mana- reindeer obtaining their living from the