A New Conscience and an Ancient Evil

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Purchase of this book includes free trial access to www.million-books.com where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: CHAPTER U RECENT LEGAL ENACTMENTS At the present moment even the least conscientious citizens agree that, first and foremost, the organized traffic in what has come to be called white slaves must be suppressed and that those traffickers who procure their victims for purely commercial purposes must be arrested and prosecuted. As it is impossible to rescue girls fraudulently and illegally detained, save through governmental agencies, it is naturally through the line of legal action that the most striking revelations of the white slave traffic have come. For the sake of convenience, we may divide this legal action into those cases dealing with the international trade, those with the state and interstate traffic, and the regulations with which the municipality alone is concerned. First in value to the white slave commerce is the girl imported from abroad who from the nature of the case is most completely in the power of the trader. She is literally friendless and unable to speak the language and at last discouraged she makes no effort to escape. Many cases of the international traffic were recently tried in Chicago and the offenders convicted by the federal authorities. One of these cases, which attracted much attention throughout the country, was of Marie, a French girl, the daughter of a Breton stone mason, so old and poor that he was obliged to take her from her convent school at the age of twelve years. He sent her to Paris, where she became a little household drudge and nurse-maid, working from six in the morning until eight at night, and for three years sending her wages, which were about a franc a day, directly to her parents in the Breton village. One afternoon, as she was buying a bottle of milk at a tiny shop, she was engaged in conversation by a young man who invit... --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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