Street Children

Figure 1.-- A reader tells us, "This is a detail of a larger, faded postcard (all there is on the rest is an empty dockside). It clearly dates to the first few years of the 1900s. Note the cranes in the background. Apart from the man at the front, all the people in this image seem to be boys, and they are all clearly poor - particularly clear in the boy to the right of the man who has ragged clothes and a dirty face. Unfortunately I don't know where this is, but it is definitely the United Kingdom. My initial feeling is that it could be East London or maybe somewhere like Tyneside in the North East of England."

Street children were a problem during the Victorian era and even the early 20th century. They are still a problem in many developing countries. We see quite a number of street scenes showing children who you would think shoild be in school. We are nure just who these children are. Of course the photographs could have been taken after school or on saturday or sunday. We suspect that compulsory attendenance laws were often not strictly enforced. These could be street children or children not well cared for by their parents. They may have been children who survived by running errands. Many may have wanted jobsm but were unable to find them or were prevented by child labor laws. We begin seeing photographs of these children in the late-19th century.


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Created: 7:35 PM 10/7/2005
Last updated: 7:35 PM 10/7/2005