Child Welfare and Reform: Records from the Ministry of Health and Department of Health and Social Security.
This collection comprises manuscript records pertaining to ten reformatory and industrial schools in the United Kingdom. From the mid-nineteenth century, children who were orphaned or otherwise abandoned were often sent to industrial schools in order to learn skills that would make them useful in the workforce. Children who had been convicted of crimes were regularly sent to reformatory schools after stints in prison.
Among the manuscripts included in this collection are “rules and regulations” documents. For example, in the Glamorganshire Reformatory School file, the document specifies that “boys are admitted under the Reformatory Schools Act, 1866, being between the ages of ten and fifteen years, and having been either previously convicted or of known criminal habits, and being mentally and physically fit for work.” Also spelled out in the document are the daily menus and hours spent on schoolwork (dependent on harvest schedules), recreation and exercise, religious instruction, and physical labor.