we think of turn-of-the-last-century newsboys today, we tend to
think of the musical "Newsies" or the newsboy cap. We don't
typically think of the hordes of poverty-stricken boys who,
unsupervised and often under appalling conditions, sold
newspapers on the nation's streets for a pittance.
Note that it was not until 1950 that research was published
linking smoking to lung cancer. By then, all U.S. states banned
the sale of cigarettes to minors (though the age of a "minor"
varied, and state smoking laws for minors continue to vary from
state to state).
The photographer, Lewis Wickes Hines (1874-1940), compiled
photographs taken between 1908 and 1912 for the National Child
Labor Committee (NCLC). These photographs, taken while working
undercover, were pivotal in passing child labor legislation in
the United States.
Date Created/Published: May, 1910. Image courtesy of the
Library of Congress.
Original caption for the
photograph on the right: "A.M. Mon. May 9, 1910. Newsies at
Skeeter's branch They were all smoking. St. Louis, Mo. Location:
St. Louis, Missouri."