Outstanding piece in NYT on what American kids were like in the 19th century — eye opening:
“American children of the 19th century had a reputation. Returning British visitors reported on American kids who showed no respect, who swore and fought, who appeared — at age 10 — ‘calling for liquor at the bar, or puffing a cigar in the streets,’ as one wrote…
“There were really no children in 19th-century America, travelers often claimed, only “small stuck-up caricatures of men and women….
“The story of every 19th-century empire builder — Carnegie, Rockefeller, Vanderbilt — seems to begin with a striving 10-year-old. “