• Life in Lawrence was hard for mill workers. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor’s Report on the Strike (1912), in 1910 Lawrence had the:

    • Eighth highest death rate per 1000 in the country (Lowell the worst).
    • Seventh highest death rate for infants in the country.
    • Fifth highest death rate in the country for children under 5.
  • The 1912 Lawrence Survey described the city “as an appendage to the textile industries…” The hundreds of families crowded together in “the beehives at the center of the city” make a condition that “must increasingly come to be viewed as abnormal, unnatural, a social disease rightly called huddle fever.”

  • At the start of the 20th century:
    Lawrence produced nearly 25% of all the woolen cloth in the U.S.
    65% of manufacturing output, 67% of all the capital invested, and 66% of expenditures for material were from woolen mills.
    52% of the city’s wages came from the woolen mills.

  • U. S. Commissioner of Labor Charles P. Neil found that for the week ending November 25, 1911, 22,000 textile employees—including foremen, supervisors, and office workers—averaged about $8.76 for a full week’s work in Lawrence. Not everyone worked a full week.

    The MA Labor Commission found that “the lowest total for human living conditions for an individual…was $8.28 a week.” A third of Lawrence families earned less than $7.00.