Virtual Exhibit — Child Labor Reform

President Taft's Signature Pen

Taft and signature penThis gold ink stylus was used by U. S. President William Taft in 1912 to sign the Children’s Bureau Act into law, the first step in national child labor reform. Taft then presented the pen to Reverend Alexander J. McKelway, whose family gifted it to the PHC Collection. Reverend McKelway was a founder of the National Child Labor Committee. The inscription on the pen reads, “Used by President Taft in Signing the Children’s Bureau Bill. April 9, 1912.” The picture shows Taft signing the bill with Rev. McKelway and others from the National Child Labor Committee. The clipping is from the Washington Post newspaper, April 10, 1912. PHC Collection