Mill Girl Letter Textile Mill 4132 Millbury Ave. Lowell, Mass. January 6th, 1848 Dear family and friends, It has been four months since I left the farm for New England to work at the textile mill. I Have 7 months more until my work period is over on July 3rd. When I first arrived at the mill I was in shock and amazement at the size of the building. I think it’s because I haven’t seen anything bigger than our church. Soon after arriving I was assigned to a room with three other girls. Their names are Anne, Martha, and Suzanne.
I think my first week of work was the hardest because I needed to get used to the work schedule. We work from Monday to Saturday and on Sunday we go to church and get the rest of the day off. We work from 5:00 in the morning till 7:00 at night, but there has been some talk about the days being shortened to 10 hours a day. But for now the day roughly lasts for 11 hours and 40 minutes a day. The days in the factory are very cold but in our room we have a fireplace that keeps us warm during the cold winter nights.
My boss Benjamin is not the nicest boss to the other girls, but he seems to like me the most out of the rest of the girls. The reason for this might be because he is in love with me but I am not sure if I am in love with him. In the future I believe my best route is to marry him and to live here in New England. My best friend at the mill is Martha, and her and I do everything together. On Sunday I usually go to the theatre or shop for dresses with Martha. Once in a while I use my Sunday as a relax day where I read and sleep lazily. All the girls at the mill are close together such as one large family.
Whenever a person is in need at the mill they are always helped. This is one of the reasons why I kind of enjoy working at the mill. We all treat each other as sisters and we rarely ever fight. It was a surprise to me to see a 12-year-old girl named Mary to work on the machines much faster than the rest of the girls. She tells us she is working here a the mill so that she can pay for her brother Tim’s college. In 7 months I will reach my conclusion in deciding if I will marry Benjamin or not. But for now I wish you better luck for this season’s harvest Love, Margaret