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Valley of the Shadow

Valley Virginian: October 14, 1869

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Summary: The author looks to the theory and practice of "Co-operation" to solve the various problems that exist between Capital and underpaid, disinterested Labor. His suggestion, borrowed from the example of a previously failing British Coal Mining operation, is to spread the wealth among the workmen. Logic would dictate that a worker with more to gain would naturally work harder and more efficiently. According to the author, this increase in output would be beneficial to both Labor and Capital and for the prosperity of Virginia overall.
Full Text of Article:

Does it pay the manufacturer best to pursue the usual old mode of hiring his workmen for the least money, or to interest them by co-operation? The manufacturing interest of Staunton is rapidly increasing, and it is well for us to study this question. Facts, as well as theory, answer Co-operation.

Under the old system the selfish rule of conduct is for Capital to give Labor as little as possible, and as a natural result Labor gives Capital as little return as it dare, with a very indifferent interest in the quality of the article made or the success of the business. They both quickly take advantage of the necessities of the other to rise or fall. They stand all through their connection in direct antagonism towards each other, which not unfrequently results in strikes, lock out, riots, loss and suffering. A practical example of the complete reverse of this system is furnished us in an English Coal Mine. A large Company from the above cause had advertised to sell out, having lost continuously for years, and not expecting to realize one half of their investment, from the sales.

A proposal was made from their miners. The company to receive a certain rate of interest on their money, the hands to be entitled to draw their wages weekly. The scale to be regulated by a Board of Miners and the Directors. Then all profit above the interest, cost of labor, &c, was to be divided equally between Capital and Labor. The miners who let their money lay were allowed the same rate of interest as other stock owners. The result was constant work, better coal, no waste, the miners watched each other, and at the end of the second year they had over five per cent extra to divide between the heretofore bankrupt Company and idle miners.

Each of our manufacturers and farmers can easily arrange with their workmen some simple plan of co-operation which will render their interests identical and add to our general prosperity.

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Summary: Samuel L. Rhodes and Miss Maggie C. Firth, daughter of Capt. Robert Firth, were married near Middlebrook on October 14th by the Rev. J. Lantz.
(Names in announcement: Samuel L. Rhodes, Maggie C. Firth, Capt. Robert Firth, Rev. J. Lantz)
(Column 02)
Summary: Johnnie M. Dull, son of M. M. and M. E. Dull, died at his home near Midway on September 24th. He was 1 year old.
(Names in announcement: Johnnie M. Dull, M. M. Dull, M. E. Dull)

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