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cent. Dry goods are 7.2 per cent. lower. Average increase of 28 per cent. ou all items of expense. Wages have decreased 2 per cent.

CITY OF SALEM, COUNTY OF ESSEX. Groceries have advanced 19 per cent., provisions 61.8 per cent., boots and shoes 60 per cent., fuel 20 per cent., rents 13 per cent., dry goods 3 per cent., and the price of boarıl 32.5 per cent. Average increase of 21 per cent. on all items of expense. Wages have advanced 12 per cent.

TOWN OF BUCKLAND, COUNTY OF FRANKLIN. Groceries have advanced 15 per cent., provisions 20 per cent., boots and si des 30 per cent., rents 9.5 per cent., and the price of board 37.5 per cent. Fuel is 4.3 per cent. lower and dry goods 5.6 per cent. Average increase of 11 per cent, on all items of expense. Wages remain unchanged.

TOWN OF MONTAGUE, COUNTY OF FRANKLIN.
No prices were obtained for 1860. Wages have advanced 23 per cent.

TOWN OF CHICOPEE, COUNTY OF HAMPDEX. Groceries have advanced 14 per cent., provisions 11.4 per cent., boots and shoes 2.6 per cent., fuel 10.7 per cent., rents 23.8 per cent., and the price of board 32.5 per cent. Dry goods are 5 per cent. lower. Average increase of 17 per cent. on all itens of expense. Wages have advanced 25 per cent.

CITY OF HOLYOKE, COUNTY OF HAMPDEN. Groceries have advanced 9.9 per cent., provisions 27 per cent., boots and shoes 4 per cent., fuel 5.5 per cent., rents 41 per cent., and the price of board 58 per cent. Dry goods are 4.7 per cent. lower. Average increase of 24.6 per cent. on all items of expense. Wages have advanced 21 per cent.

TOWN OF MONSON, COUNTY OF HAMPDEN. Groceries have advanced 12 per cent., provisions 24.9 per cent., rents 10 per cent., and the price of board 53 per cent. Fuel is 1.3 per cent. lower and dry goods 7.6 per cent. Boots and shoes remain unchanged. Average increase of 14 per cent, on all items of expense. No return was made for wages in 1860

CITY OF SPRINGFIELD, COUNTY OF HAMPDEN. Groceries have advanced 7.3 per cent., provisions 21.8 per cent., fuel 2.- per cent., rents 23.3 per ceut., and the price of board 35 per cent. Dry goods are 9.6 per cent. lower. Bouts and shoes are unchanged. Average increase of 15 per cent, on all items of expense. Wages have advancer 8 per cent.

TOWN OF WESTFIELD, COUNTY OF HAMPDES. Groceries have advanced 9.4 per cent., provisions 19 per cent., boots and shoes per cent., fuel 8 per cent., rents * per cent., and the price of board 56 per cent. Dry goods are 12.8 per cent. lower. Average increase of 18.8 per cent, on all items of expenet, Wages have advanced 19 per cent.

TOWN OF EASTHAMPTON, COUNTY OF HAMPSHIRE. Groceries have advanced 2.4 per cent., provisions 26 per cent., boots and shoes 18 per cent., fuel 25 per cent., rents 34.7 per cent., and the price of board 50 per cent. Dry goods are 10.4 per cent. lower. Average increase of 22 per cent. on all items of expense. Wages have advanced 30 per cent.

TOWN OF NORTHAMPTOX, COUNTY OF HAMPSHIRE. Groceries have advanced 8.4 per cent., provisions 18.8 per cent., boots and shoes * per cent., rents 12 per cent., and the price of board 42 per cent. Fuel is 12.5 per cent. lower and dry goods 8.7 per cent. Average inerease of 11 per cent. on all items of (1• pense. Wages have advanced 33 per cent.

TOWN OF WARE, COUNTY OF HAMPSHIRE. Groceries have advanced 9.3 per cent., provisions 14.4 per cent., and the price of board 22.5 per cent. Fuel is 14.2 per cent. cheaper and boots and shoes 4.5 per cent. No return for price of dry goods in 1860. Rents remain unchanged. Average increase of 14 per cent. on all items of expense, Wages have advanced 43 per cent.

CITY OF CAMBRIDGE, COUNTY OF MIDDLESEX.

Groceries have advanced 13 per cent., provisions 24 per cent., boots and shoes 20 per cent., fuel 4.7 per cent., and rents 21 per cent. Dry goods are 7.8 per cent. lower. No price for board in 1860 could be obtained. Average increase of 13 per cent. on all items of expense. Wages have advanced 15 per cent.

CITY OF LOWELL, COUNTY OF MIDDLESEX. Groceries have advanced 15.5 per cent., provisions 26.8 per cent., fuel 1.3 per cent., rents 25 per cent., and the price of board 32 per cent. Dry goods are 10 per cent. lower. Boots and shoes remain unchanged. Average increase of 16 per cent. on all items of expense. Wages have advanced 12 per cent.

CITY OF SOMERVILLE, COUNTY OF MIDDLESEX.

Groceries have advanced 9 per cent., provisions 22.5 per cent., boots and shoes 25 per cent., fuel 2.3 per cent., and rents 20 per cent. Dry goods are 5.4 per cent. lower. No price for board in 1860 could be obtained. Average increase of 9.6 per cent. on all items of expense. Wages have advanced 13 per cent.

TOWN OF QUINCY, COUNTY OF NORFOLK.
No return made of prices in 1860. Wages have advanced 23 per cent.

CITY OF BOSTON, COUNTY OF SUFFOLK. Groceries have advanced 10.8 per cent., provisions 18.6 per cent., fuel 2.4 per cent., and rents 15 per cent. Dry goods are 10.2 per cent. lower. Boots and shoes remain unchanged. "No prite for board in 1860 was obtained. Average increase of 8 per cent. on all items of expense. Wages have advanced 12 per cent.

TOWN OF CLINTON, COUNTY OF WORCESTER. Groceries have advanced 10.3 per cent., provisions 19.6 per cent., boots and shoes 23.8 per cent., fuel 5.5 per cent., rents 28.5 percent, and the price of board 56.2 per cent. Dry goods are 11.8 per cent. lower. Average increase of 16 per cent. on all items of expense. Wages have advanced 48 per cent.

CITY OF FITCHBURG, COUNTY OF WORCESTER. Groceries have advanced 3.9 per cent., provisions 20 per cent., boots and shoes 13.6 per cent., fuel 17.6 per cent., rents 23 per cent., and the price of board 47.3 per cent. Dry goods are 6.8 per cent. lower. Average increase of 17.4 per cent. on all items of expense. Wages have advanced 34 per cent.

TOWN OF LEICESTER, COUNTY OF WORCESTER.

Groceries have advanced 11.7 per cent., provisions 17.9 per cent., boots and shoes 4 per cent., rents 10 per cent., and the price of board 37.5 per cent. Fuel is 2.6 per cent. lower, and dry goods 8.8 per cent. Average increase of 8.6 per cent, on all items of expense. Wages have advanced 21 per cent.

TOWN OF MILLBURY, COUNTY OF WORCESTER. Groceries have advanced 10.3 per cent., provisions 18 per cent., rents 16.6 per cent., and the price of board 37.5 per cent. Boots and shoes are 4.5 per cent. lower, fuel 7.6 per cent., and dry goods 10.5 per cent. Average increase of 7 per cent. on all items of expense. Wages have advanced 36 per cent.

TOWN OF WEBSTER, COUNTY OF WORCESTER.

No return of prices for 1860. Wages have advanced 40 per cent.

CITY OF WORCESTER, COUNTY OF WORCESTER.

No return of prices for 1860. Wages have advanced 25 per cent.

Table VII is self-explanatory. It shows the purchase-power of money, or, in other words, the respective quantities of each article which one dollar in gold would buy in

1-60, 1872, and 1878. Under the head of fuel, the “ foot” means 16 cubic feet, or oneeighth of a cord.

TABLE VII.-Purchase-power of money.

What one dollar would buy

Articles.

1860.

1872

1878

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GROCERIES.
Flonr, superfine, wheat .........
Flour, family
Flour, rye.
Corn meal.
Codfish, dry.
Rice ........
Beans ......
Tea, Oolong ....
Coffee, Rio, green .........
Coffee, roasted..........
Sugar, good brown...........
Sugar, coffee
Sugar, granulated.
Molasses, New Orleans .
Molasses, Porto Rico ..
Sirup.......
Soap ...........
Starch....

... pounds.

..do
....do ..

do
....do..
.....do...
..... quarts..

.. pounds

....do ...
.....do....

....do..
....do....
......do ..

gallons..
....... do....

...do ...
..... pounds.
............. do ...

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1. 83 4.67

1.36 12. 19 10.99 9. 70 1.97 1.73 1.57 11. 49 9.18

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Beef, roasting ......
Beef, soup.......
Beef, rump, steak ...,
Beef, corned.........
Veal, tore quarter
Veal, hind quarter....
Veal cutlets .........
Mutton, fore quarter
Mutton, leg......
Mutton-chops ...
Pork, fresh
Pork, salted
Hams, smoked ...
Sbonlders, corned
Sausages .........
Lard ....
Mackerel, pickled ...,
Butter
('heese .....
Potatoes ..
Milk ...
Eggs...

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('oal
Wood, hard ...
Wood, pine....................

...... pounds..

...... feet. .......do...

312.5

1.23
1. 90

1. 14

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WAGES AND PRICES. We have shown the average weekly wages by towns and industries for 1-0, 1-7) and 1878; and the prices of groceries, provisions, &c., by city and tow percentages

and for the State, by name, for each article of expense for the same years. The results show, as hereinbefore stated, an advance of twenty-four and four-tenths per cent. in wages, and fourteen and a half per cent, in cost of living. On the face of it, this means a pecuniary advance in the condition of workingmen of nine and nine-tenths per cent. At the same time the reductions in the hours of labor which have been secured in various ways since 1860 should be taken into account. The application of the general average of increase in prices, 144 per cent., to a workingman's whole income, does not cover the whole ground, or tell the whole truth. We reproduce from our report for 1875 a table showing the percentages of expenditure, as regards income, for the various items of the cost of living. The basis and absolute truth of this table are fully explained in the report above mentioned.

TABLE VIII.Percentages of expenditure as regards income.

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To fully illustrate the effect of the advance in the cost of living, it is necessary to apply to the various items of expenditure their appropriate percentages of increase or clecrease. We will take for our first illustration the case of a workingman earning $400 in a year. His expenses, in percentages and money-values, may be presented in tabular form, with a column showing the percentages of increase or decrease for each division of expenditure, based upon our figures for 1860 and 1878.

TABLE IX.- Percentages of expenditure of an income of $100 yearly.

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The succeeding table shows the application of the 24.4 per cent. increase in wages, and the various percentages of increase or decrease in prices of the different items of expense, drawn from our figures for 1860 and 1878, to the workingman's income and expenditure of $400 yearly.

TABLE X.- A workingman's income of $400, increased 24.4 per cent., equals $497.60.

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Totals ......

400 00

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An advance of 144 per cent. upon $400 expended would amount to $58, or $5.50 more than shown by the above table. This result is caused by different bases being necessarily used in averaging, and also from the fact that the percentage of increase or decrease on “sundry expenses” cannot be accurately determined.

From the example given, it is seen that the workingman with wages increased from $400 to $197.60 yearly, has his expenses also advanced from $400 to $452.30 yearly, or 13+ per cent. This is a gain of $45.10, or 11+ per cent. for the workingman, as against 9.9 per cent.

We have applied the percentages of increase or decrease in price in the various items of expenditure to only one division of Table VIII; but an interested party can deal with the other divisions in the same way, or apply the rules to his own expenditures, if he has kept suitable books of account. He can also apply the rules to the city and town showings.

To sum up, the result of our investigation as regards wages and prices in 1860 and 1878 may be stated as follows: That the arerage weekly wages of workingmen in mannfarturing and mechanical industries in Massachusetts, allowing for the advance in the cost of living, were ten per cent, higher in 1878 than they were in 1860, no account being made of the fact that the wages in 1878 were paid for fewer hours of labor per week, in many industrica, than were required in 1860.

PURCHASES.

Contemporaneously with the investigation by our agents as regarded wages and prices, other agents were making researches into the matter of purchases by the laboring classes, visiting retail dealers in different branches of trade, and ascertaining the quantity and quality of housekeeping articles purchased by workingien, as compared with previous years, also inquiring if the workingien had sufficient income to enable them to pay their bills with promptness.

Our agents employed in this investigation visited 345 dealers engaged in retail business. Their places of business were located in the following towns and cities: In Wakefield, 11; in Stoneham, 12; in Malden, 19; in Woburn, 13; in Peabody, 12; in Lynn, 50; in Salem, 20; in Chelsea, 41; in Cambridge, 43; in Boston, 124, of wluch 37 were in the Charlestown district, 35 in East Boston, 22 in South Boston, and 30 at the North and West Ends and in Boston Highlands.

As regards kinds of business, 118 were dealers in groceries, 37 in provisions, 51 in both groceries and provisions, 38 in boots and shoes, 23 in ready-made clothing, 11 in custom-made clothing, 13 in hats and caps and gents' furnishing goods, 15 in furniture, carpets, and crockery, 15 in dry goods, 20 in wood and coal, and 4 in sewing-machines; total, 345.

In presenting the testimony of the retail dealers we shall keep each branch of business by itself; giving, in each case, the results concerning the quality of goods purchased by workingmen, the quantity as compared with previous years, and, finally, the information obtained regarding the promptness in payments.

Groceries.-One hundred and eighteen retail dealers. “As regards quality of groceries purchased by workingien, 85 dealers state, that, of the staple goods they buy the best; while 57 dealers say they always buy the best flour; 28 dealers say they sell some of the best grade of goods, the balance being good or ordinary ; 32 dealers state that they sell few canned goods or fancy groceries, while 2 dealers report sales of more of this grade of goods than in past years. Concerning quantities purchased now, as compared with previous years, 97 dealers say the workingmen buy in sinall quantities, being very economical, purchasing only what is necessary from day to day; 13 dealers state that their customers buy as much as they ever did; 4 dealers think they would buy more if times were good. Regarding payment, 71 dealers-many selling exclusively for cash-report that bills are paid as promptly as they ever were; 29 dealers say that money comes in slowly; 10 dealers say payments are always prompt wheu their customers have work; 1 dealer says payments are made more promptly than a year ago; 5 dealers say they lose no more by workingmen than by those supposed to have money, and 5 other dealers state that the workingmen pay better than those supposed to have money.

Provisions.—Thirty-seven retail dealers. That workingmen buy the best meats and vegetables is stated by 17 dealers; 20 dealers say they purchase a good quality of meats, but not the best; 4 dealers say they use much soup-meat ; 6 dealers say they used to sell better meats; 1 dealer says the laboring classes do not buy fruits and canned goods; and 1 dealer thinks their economy is in quantity, not qnality. Regarding quantity, 28 dealers coincide in the statement that the workingmen buy economnically, in small quantities, as needed; 7 dealers say their customers buy as much as ever. Concerning payments, 24 dealers say they pay well, generally cash; 10 dealers say they pay slowly; 2 dealers consider workingmen as good pay as business men, and 6 dealers think they would pay better if they had more work.

Groceries and provisions.-Fifty-one retail dealers. Of this class of shopkeepers, dealing in groceries, meats, vegetables, &c., as regarding quality, 37 say their customers

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