How to answer the last part of the Quarry Bank Mill assignment
“To what extent do you think Samuel Greg, and his son Robert were good employers”
Historians disagree about whether the factory owners in the early industrial revolution treated their workers badly. The purpose of this last question is for you to investigate a range of historical sources, including the field trip, to come to a conclusion about this question.
You need to say what you think the answer to the question is and what sort of evidence you will be looking at.
2. Living Conditions
Visual evidenceUse what you have seen at the site to describe the living conditions. You need to include evidence from the Apprentice House, Styal village, the displays inside the mill and the environment around the mill. Don’t forget to say whether the sources are reliable because things might have changed over time. Also remember that at the Apprentice House it was an interpretation of what life was like. You need to show this and also why it had been interpreted in this way.
Written sourcesUse the written source material on the Gregs to form a judgement about living conditions at Quarry Bank Mill. You need to consider such things as health, housing, discipline, education, food. Can you trust these sources? How reliable are they? Do different sources say different things? Interpretations. Why?
Visual evidence (what you saw at the site.)You need to think about what it would have been like to work in the mill in those times. You need to look at the mill and the surrounding buildings. You need to think about such things as: the amount of light; the distance they would have had to travel to work, the noise levels in the mill, whether the ventilation would have been adequate, the timekeeping methods employed, the dangers of working in the mill, the level of sanitation. Also remember that the inside of the mill is an interpretation of what life was like. You need to show this and also why it had been interpreted in this way.
Written sources.Use the written source material on the Gregs as employers to help you to form a judgement about what it was like to work at Quarry Bank Mill. You need to consider such things as: wages, worker-employer relations, safety, discipline, supervision, the work they did. Can you trust these sources? How reliable are they? Do different sources say different things? Interpretations. Why?
3. Summary and Conclusion
a) Which sources gave you the most reliable picture of working and living conditions? Explain why you think they are useful and, or reliable. (Sources)
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