Address on Street Trading, March 1909

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MISS JANE ADDAMS, Hull House: "I think about six years ago we made an investigation of a thousand newsboys within twenty-eight hours. We tried to do it in twenty-four hours, and at least eight hundred were taken in twenty-four hours, and two hundred more afterwards. The one thousand boys were very carefully questioned; we found exactly what made them leave school, the circumstances of their family, how much their earnings were needed, their truancy record and all the rest. It was considered, I think, a very good piece of work.

"The conclusion we reached was that there was no law practically designed to reach such a situation. A newsboy is a merchant and does not come within the child labor regulations. This matter was then before the publishers' association here with the hope that with the example of the New York and Boston newspapers before them, we might be able to secure some [page 2] favorable action. But the publishers' association here put us off, I regard to state, and did not finally take any action in the matter at all. So far, we have been unable to secure any legislative action on the subject. It is a very disgraceful situation, I think, for Chicago to be placed in while the Illinois child labor law is so good. The City of Chicago is a little careless, if not recreant, towards the children who are not reached by the operation of the state law."