The 1911 Triangle Factory Fire: Eyewitness at the Triangle

William Shepherd, Eyewitness at the Triangle. Milwaukee Journal, 27 March 1911. “The nation learned of the horrible fire at the Triangle Shirtwaist Company through the eyewitness account of a United Press reporter who happened to be in Washington Square on March 25, 1911. He phoned in details while watching the tragedy unfold. At the other end of the telephone, young Roy Howard telegraphed Shepherd’s story to the nation’s newspapers.” [Read more…]

How the Other Half Lives: Studies Among the Tenements of New York in the 1880s

Jacob Riis, How the Other Half Lives: Studies Among the Tenements of New York. Scribner’s, November 1890. Harvard University Press: “Jacob Riis’s pioneering work of photojournalism takes its title from Rabelais’s Pantagruel: ‘One half of the world knoweth not how the other half liveth; considering that no one has yet written of that Country.’ An anatomy of New York City’s slums in the 1880s, it vividly brought home to its first readers through the powerful combination of text and images the squalid living conditions of ‘the other half,’ who might well have inhabited another country. The book pricked the conscience of its readers and raised the tenement into a symbol of intransigent social difference. As Alan Trachtenberg makes clear in his introduction, it is a book that still speaks powerfully to us today of social injustice.” [Read more…]