The focus of the typical business tycoon laid dead set on profit and production, and left scamp or no spot on the agenda for employee well being and safety. Portentous fatalities in the workplace did nothing to sway factory owners into adopting appropriate hazard prevention measures. This neglect came to a focal point with the Triangle Shirtwaist Company disaster of 1911. A blazing inferno within the floors occupied by the factory caused approximately one hundred and forty six women to lose their lives via incineration or plummeting. David von Drehles nonfiction novel, Triangle: the Fire That Changed America, accounts events before and after the tragedy, and why the Triangle disaster is significant to America as a whole, and not just exclusive to New York.
U.S. History 10/14/2011 MW 12:00-1:55p Horrifying working conditions was not a rarity during the Progressive Era, especially for the many garment industries growing during this time. Filled with mostly young women, these sweat shop-like businesses were a popular workplace for unwed, immigrant women. Unfortunately, the rights’ of women and other garment employees were absent, leaving them in some of the most unsafe working conditions during the twentieth century. Not until March 25, 1911, when a tragic fire broke out at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory in Manhattan leaving many workers with no exit but death, did the public see a need for drastic changes in the work place. With laissez-faire and social Darwinism, the government had no demand to interfere with big businesses, allowing them to make their own rules, safety conditions, and handle employees as they please.
Poli-140 4 July 2012 Applying Schattschneider’s Scope of Conflict to the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire On March 25, 1911 at 4:40pm, the Asch building owned by the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory occupied over 500 employees that were twenty minutes away from shutting down and heading home for the evening. When a fire broke out on the eighth floor, there were very few safety precautions in effect. The only tools employees had to save themselves were 27 buckets of water and a rusty, rickety fire escape. It took five minutes for the authorities to be notified, but the fire fighters were ill equipped to help the suffering worker; their hoses only retch to the sixth floor, and the ladders could only make it between the sixth and seventh floors. As a crowd congregated, people were horrified and captivated by the extent of the anguish.
Throughout America’s history, there are few dates that are as influential as May 25, 1911. On this day, the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory caught fire and took the lives of 146 workers. Before the “Triangle Shirtwaist Fire,” the factory was a successful garment industry that thrived off of political corruption, and extremely horrible working conditions. Not only was the disaster responsible for the death of 146 workers, it helped shape many changes dealing with business and politics. During the early 1900’s, countless immigrants were settling in America.
Majority of the people would agree with this statement because most of the time factories conditions were grim. There were no health and safety rules and regulations, the stench in the factory or mill made many children and workers sick, the rooms were hot, humid and unsanitary, with air full of cotton dust. Source A shows women workers in a cycle factory in Coventry in the 1890s. The man on the left is the supervisor. None of the machines have safety guards.
(www.nettlesworth.durham) Thousands of new workers were needed to work machines in mills and the factory owners built houses for them. The working conditions were very poor. There was no heating or lighting, many people worked 14 hrs a day 7 days a week. Children from the age of five also had to work; they had the most dangerous jobs which were to clean the machinery. Many children died from doing this and others were seriously injured with legs and arms ripped off.
Giancarlo 3/25/14 Essay Two of the problems encountered by the Progressive reformers at the turn of the century were social welfare concerns regarding labor practices, and the politics of prohibition. Major problems associated with social welfare included factory wages, work hours, sanitation and child labor. Factory wages were at an all time low. A workday could be as long as 10-12 hours. A large majority of factories were unsafe and unclean.
The nightclub Kiss fire in the city of Santa Maria, on Southern of Brazil, had about 230 victims on January 29 of 2013. It was caused by the use of pyrotechnics. The nightclub burned down was licensed to hold 100 at the time but was packed with 300 young people in high spirits. The flares burned people, suffocated them, even as the panicky crowd crushed itself to the pack of the dead and to death. The place was windowless and there were just one door but the dead blocked the ones alive who fought for a way out.
The government’s involvement in the anti-sweatshop labor campaign both in the United States and abroad has drastically changed the practice of sweatshop labor to a more ethical business practice. Around the turn of the 20th century, sweatshops within the US were very common. (Rodriguez 61) The United States government became involved in labor issues due to the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire in 1911. (Rodriguez 61) One hundred and forty eight immigrant sweatshop workers were killing in this fire, bringing national attention to sweatshop labor practices. (Rodriguez 61) Immediately, the government began to form legislation to prohibit the unfair labor practices found in sweatshops.
Many children in the United States between the late 19th century and early 20th century lived in abject poverty; mostly in tenement houses located in urban areas (Child Labor.). Children worked in horrible conditions such as: textile mills, coalmines, flourmills, machine shops, garment factories, tobacco factories, shoe factories, and carpet plants, in order to provide a source of income for their families. Lewis Hine, a New York City photographer, felt strongly about the abuse of children as workers and decided to investigative this for the National Child Labor Committee (Child Labor and Lewis Hine.). Hines used few words and extremely powerful images to educate the American public about the negative effects of child labor. Hine's images of working children stirred America's conscience and helped change the nation's labor laws.