W.H. Hutt

The two main conclusions suggested by this discussion are, first, that there has been a general tendency to exaggerate the “evils” which characterized the factory system before the abandonment of laissez faire and, second, that factory legislation was not essential to the ultimate disappearance of those “evils.” Conditions which modern standards would condemn were then common to the community as a whole, and legislation not only brought with it other disadvantages, not readily apparent in the complex changes of the time, but also served to obscure and hamper more natural and desirable remedies.

– W.H. Hutt, “The Factory System of the Early Nineteenth Century” [1954]