Mack’s play about photographer Lewis Hine and his efforts to establish child labor laws during the 1920s and 30s made a re-appearance in the iconic Junior Scholastic magazine. The compelling play tells the story of a trio of siblings and their stolen childhood at the hands of industrialization. It originally appeared in Scholastic’s Scope magazine. To get an archived digital copy of the play, consider becoming a Junior Scholastic subscriber by clicking here.
For more information on the pioneering work of Lewis Hine and the history of child labor in the U.S., visit The History Place and the Lewis Hine Project. Hine’s photos of emaciated and abused child laborers rallied pubic support for regulation that remains in effect today. Hine became famous for lugging his simple box camera into cotton mills and coal mines where he took photos of children as young as five or six doing the work traditionally given to adults. Children often worked twelve hours a day or longer in dangerous conditions. Because factories could hire children for a fraction of what they could hire adults, unemployment among men skyrocketed. Naturally, Hine was labled an instigator and was frequently thrown out of many of the factories he visited.