The Working Men of Springfield.
To the Editor of the Register:
Owing to the already enormous and still advancing rates of living, the perplexities of the working classes are multiplying every day. While rents and fuel and each and every article of food and raiment command prices from fifty to three hundred per cent. higher than they did two or three years ago, labor has not advanced to exceed, on an average, over fifteen per cent. The consequence is, that the working man, after having finished his week's toil, and received the compensation therefor, goes to his home, not to enjoy a day's repose, but to rack his mind over the problem how he is to meet the current expenses of the week with the means in his possession. Very few working men in this city will fail to perceive the truth of the foregoing statement. Every one dependent on his labor for the support of himself and family, will admit such as his own experience.
Now, if there is any necessity for this, or any reason why such a state of affairs should be continued for another week, the writer lacks the sagacity to perceive either. The fact is, there is no reason why labor should not advance in exact proportion to its own products, save that employees have not had the courage (seemingly,) to make a united and determined demand to that effect. Can they postpone such a demand much longer? Let each one answer this question for himself. Some employers, it is said, have declared that they will not increase the compensation of their employees — that they will discharge any applicant for higher wages — will suspend business rather than advance a cent, etc., etc.; but the scarcity of labor will prevent the former result, and of the latter, there is little danger so long as the margin for profits on the products of labor is as wide as at present.
Now it is considered to be the duty of working men of all crafts, and of no craft in particular, to take some efficient action in the direction of relief. Better wages can be obtained by a determined demand. This, it is presumed, would be more effectual if made according to some regular system, understood and appreciated by all concerned in the effort to secure additional compensation. Such has been the course pursued by the working man of other cities, and we see not why it might not aid us in procuring the desired result in this. Let us go promptly to work and at least make an effort for our deliverance from our present perplexities. This is the advice of a bona fide WORKING MAN.