A child between fourteen and sixteen years of age may be employed at a gainful occupation only upon the recommendation of the school principal or clerk of the board of education.
In 1900 more than seven-tenths of the inhabitants in gainful occupations were engaged in agriculture (25.6%), manufactures and mechanical pursuits (26.7%), and trade and transportation (22%).
The employment of children under fourteen years of age in any factory, workshop, mine, bowling alley or beer garden is forbidden, and their employment at any gainful occupation is permitted only during the vacation of the public school.
Labour laws, passed by the first legislature (1908), were amended and made more radical by the legislature of 1909: a child labour law forbids the employment of children under 14 in factories, workshops, theatres, bowling-alleys, pool-halls, steam-laundries or other dangerous places (to be defined by the commissioner of labour), and no child under 16 is to be employed in such places unless able to read and write simple English sentences or without having attended school during the previous year; no child under 16 is to be employed in any of several (enumerated) dangerous occupations; no child under 16 is to be employed more than 8 hours in any one day, or more than 48 hours in any one week in any gainful occupation other than agriculture or domestic service; age and schooling certificates are required of children between 14 and 16 in certain occupations.
Never since literature became a calling in England had it been a less gainful calling than at the time when Johnson took up his residence in London.
Manufactures.-Manufacturing and mechanical pursuits absorbed in 1900 the labours of 19.5% of all persons engaged in gainful occupations, less than half as many as were engaged in agriculture.
Of males (1,097, 581) engaged in 1900 in gainful occupations 47.1% were engaged in manufacturing and mechanical pursuits (77.9 in every loo in 1870 and 73 in 1900), 27.1 in trade and transportation, 14.2 in domestic and personal service, 7.4 in agricultural pursuits and 4.2 in professional service.
Of the 75 2, 53 1 of its inhabitants who, in 1900, were engaged in some gainful occupation, 408,185 or 54'2%, were agriculturists, and of its total land surface 21,979,422 acres, or 85'9%, were included in farms. The percentage of improved farm land increased from 35'2 in 1850 to 49'9 in_ 1880 and to 62'5 in 1900.
Of the total number of farms 168,814 were operated by the owners (in 1904, 161,037 by owners and 914 by managers), 22,482 (in 1904, 19,525) by share tenants, 973 1 (in 1904, 7685) by cash tenants; and 312,462 of the inhabitants of the state, or 34 5% of all who were engaged in gainful occupations, were farmers.
According to the United States census of 1900, out of 29,073,233 (1900) persons engaged in gainful occupations, 5,851,399 or 20'1%, were of foreign birth.
The proportion which children fo to 15 years of age engaged in gainful occupations bore to the whole number of such children was in 1880 24-4% for males, and 9.0% for females.
Until the Civil War agriculture was about the only important industry in the state, and at the close of the 19th century it was still the leading one; but from 1880 to 11900 the ratio of agriculturists to all inhabitants of the state engaged in some gainful occupation decreased from 75.3 to 64.1%.
Child labour is regulated by an act passed by the General Assembly in 1908; this act prohibits the employment of children less than 14 years of age in any gainful occupation during the session of school or in stores, factories, mines, offices, hotels or messenger service during vacations, and prohibits the employment of children between 14 and 16 unless they have employment certificates issued by a superintendent of schools or some other properly authorized person, showing the child's ability to read and write English, giving information as to the child's age (based upon a birth certificate if possible), and identifying the child by giving height and weight and colour of eyes and hair.
Occupations.29,o73,233 persons 10 years or more of age nearly two-fifths (38-3%) of the countrys total population were engaged in gainful occupations in 1900.
Of all the inhabitants of the state, at least tenears old, who in 1900 were engaged in gainful occupations, 20.8% were farmers.
Manufactures.-Rhode Island is essentially a manufacturing state; of the 191,923 persons in the state engaged in gainful occupations in 1900, 101,162 (or 52.7%) were employed in manufacturing and mechanical pursuits.