Life in a Railway Factory
Alfred Williams was born in 1877 in the small north Wiltshire village of South Marston. The fifth of eight children he grew up in conditions of harsh, rural poverty his mother raising the family single-handed after his father left home. Alfred became a 'half-tinier' at the age of eight, working part of each day at a local farm and the rest at school. At eleven he left school completely, to work full-time as a farm labourer and at fifteen joined his elder brothers in the great railway works of the GWR in nearby Swindon. It is his experience of life in these factories that is so vividly described in this book which was first published in 1915.
Detailed accounts of the engineering processes involved are paralleled by perceptive and often poignant descriptions of the people who worked them. This is a powerful book that exposed the harsh reality of factory work at the time and was only published, at Williams's request, after he had ceased to be employed by the GWR.
Williams loved the written word and spent most of his spare time, such as there was, in reading, writing and in self-education. He read the classics, taught himself Latin and Greek, translated Ovid, wrote books on rural life and earned some national acclaim for his poetry.
This illustrated edition of Life in a Railway Factory is introduced by Michael Justin Davis and is accompanied by a wealth of contemporary photographs.
Hardback with dust jacket, 288 pages, black & white photographs
Condition: Very Good
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