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EIGHT-HOUR PROCLAMATION.- The following proclamation was issued, Friday:

Whereas, the act of Congress approved June 25th, 1868, constituted on and after that date eight hours a day's work for all laborers, workmen and mechanics employed by or on behalf of the government of the United States, and repealed all acts and parts of acts inconsistent therewith: now, therefore, I, Ulysses S. Grant, president of the United States, do hereby direct that from and after this date no reduction shall be made in the wages paid by the government by the day to such laborers, workmen and mechanics on account of such reduction of the hours of labor.

In testimony whereof, I hereto set my hand and cause the seal of the United States to be affixed. Done at the city of Washington this 19th year day of May, in the year of our Lord, 1869, and the independence of the United States the ninety-third.


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On June 25, 1868, Congress passed an act that established an eight hour work day for anyone employed by the federal government. In May 1869, President Grant issued a proclamation directing that wages for this eight-hour workday would not be reduced because of the reduction of hours. This act of Congress and Presidential proclamation encouraged workers in private
industry to lobby for a shorter workday, although it would be many years
before it happened.


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"Eight-Hour Proclamation" article from the Gazette and Courier newspaper

publisher   Greenfield Gazette and Courier
author   Ulysses S. Grant (1822-1885)
date   May 24, 1869
location   Greenfield, Massachusetts
height   3.25"
width   3.0"
process/materials   printed paper, ink
item type   Periodicals/Newspaper
accession #   #L05.123

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See Also...

Mary: Lamson family servant

"Shorter Hours for Women"

"Lieut. Genl. Ulysses S. Grant U.S.A."

"Statistical Information Relating to Certain Branches of Industry in Massachusetts, For the Year Ending May 1, 1865"

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