Kosingas - Newspaper from Serbia -

Published in Serbia - Social interactions and entertainment - 10 Feb 2024 11:48 - 0

In the 17th century in England, the practice of cleaning chimneys with children was introduced.

Yes, you read that right - Children!

Master cleaners took in homeless children, bought babies from orphanages or from poor parents. Children between the ages of four and ten were ideal. They would be lowered into the chimneys with several tools, pulled up and down on a rope and forced to clean the soot from the chimney liners and scrape the tar from the inside. If the boys were slow in their work, their masters would light a torch and keep it burning at their feet.

The children did not have protective equipment and clothing, and the consequences were catastrophic. They rarely bathed and were often sick. Due to the constant exposure to soot, as well as due to the unnatural position inside the chimney, they had deformed legs, deformed kneecaps, respiratory diseases and died. It often happened that they suffocated in the chimney, got stuck or fell.

Although the conditions were bad and the children were treated in the worst way, this practice continued for about 200 years!

Only at the end of 1875 was a law ped banning the use of wood for cleaning chimneys. Joseph Gl, an engineer from Bristol, England, invented the original degreaser brushes and rods that are still in use today.Children of chimney sweeps in England only remember
  1 May Day - it was their only non-working day... 😢



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