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Among the problems encountered:
- The pace of work was determined by a machine; whereas during cottage industry work, the worker worked at his own pace. He now had to keep up with the machine.
- Work was monotonous and boring. No skill was required.
- Hours were quite long. Twelve to fourteen hour days were the norm.
- Child labor was quite common. Children not only worked in factories but also in coal mines under abominable conditions.
- The work was dangerous. Machines did not stop automatically when an arm or other limb came in contact. Many workers were killed or seriously injured.
- There was a loss of identity as workers were little more than numbers. Because there was no skill involved, they were easily replaced.
- Workers were paid menial wages. Wages were so low that entire families (fathers, mothers and children) were often required to work in the same factory just to survive.
- Children who worked in factories did not attend school on a regular basis. Those that did only attended on Sunday, the first (and true) Sunday School.
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