Child riding on a tram, Boston, 1909

Child riding on a tram, Boston, 1909

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Credit: LIBRARY OF CONGRESS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Child riding on a tram in the streets of Boston, Massachusetts, USA, 1909. This illegal practice, where children rode on the rear of trams, was known as 'flipping cars'. By this period, trams (also called streetcars) ran on electricity, with the conversion from horse-drawn vehicles taking place in the 1880s and 1890s. This urban street scene, obtained by US sociologist and photographer Lewis Wickes Hine (1874-1940), dates from October 1909. Hine was a photographer for the National Child Labor Committee (NCLC), documenting working and living conditions for children, and campaigning against child labour and poverty in the USA.

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