"Let truth speak out, appalling as the statement may appear. The fact is true. Thousands of our fellow-creatures and fellow-subjects, both male and female, the miserable inhabitants of a Yorkshire town are this very moment existing in a state of slavery..... Thousands of little children, both male and female, but principally female, from seven to fourteen years of age, are daily compelled to labour from six o’clock in the morning to seven in the evening, with only – Britons, blush while you read it! – with only thirty minutes allowed for eating and recreation….."
Letter to the Leeds Mercury from Richard Oastler, Fixby Hall, near Huddersfield, 29 September, 1830.