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Llanidloes
Victorian school days
 
  Working as maids - aged 12 !  
 

It was very common in the Victorian years for children to Young Victorian servantbe out working at an early age, because any extra money coming in to poor families was often essential to pay for food and heating.
Young boys would obtain work on the farm or in factories, mills or mines, and girls would 'go into service'.
This meant that they would work for the local gentry in the big houses, or for anyone who employed servants, since they were paid very little.
Many servants had unpleasant jobs to do like cleaning out fireplaces, and often had to start work very early in the morning.

 
7th November
1884
School diary entry
 

This comes from the Llangurig School diary for 1884:
"There are two girls - Anne Jones and Jane Davies, acting in the capacity of maids in the village. They are under thirteen years of age. The former has passed the third standard [class] ; the other is still in the first standard when she attends".
The teacher makes it clear in this entry that one of these girls has hardly ever turned up at school, and never got further than the bottom class !

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