Glass house boys leave work to fish in the spring, Hemingray factory has same problem


Publication: The Westville Indicator

Westville, IN, United States
vol. 26, no. 2, p. 1, col. 1-2


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Boys Answer "Call of the Wild" and

Glass Works Are Crippled.

Muncie. Boys throughout the old Indiana gas belt the answering "the call of the wild!" call to get close to nature that always follows the annual attack of "spring fever," and in consequence there is trouble in the glass factories. Hundreds of boys are quitting work before the regular summer shut-down and there is difficulty in operating the plants.

While the weather is cool, the interior of glass factories, with the warm, glowing furnaces and tanks, is pleasant. The manufacturers who appeared before the last legislature and argued that boys in cool weather had rather work in these places than be idle, told the truth, in a general way, although there are plenty of individual cases where it is only stern necessity that drives the child to manual labor when he would prefer to be in school.

But all is changed with the advent of spring breezes. Then the furnaces become suffocating hot. No longer is warmth attractive. Even when the weather is only moderate outside, or even uncomfortablly cool, it is sometimes insufferably warm about the lehrs, and in such cases the boy soul longs for freedom and finds it. He throws up his job and deserts to the meadows where angle worms may be found and to streams where suckers and redeyes are in abundance.

At this time the manufacturers begin to explain to irate jobbers why they cannot fill orders according to contract. The boys receive all the blame for this, if blame there be. The "boy question" is graver to the glass manufacturers than the union labor question, the car congestion question, the coal shortage or any of the other numerous things that arise to harass them.

Although men are taking the places of some of the boys who deserted from Ball Bros.' factories, part of the plant is shut down. The same condition exists at the Hemingray plant and at the Boldt factory.

Researcher notes: 
Supplemental information: 
Researcher:Bob Stahr
Date completed:January 21, 2013 by: Bob Stahr;