Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Essay

1743 Words7 Pages
On a warm day in New York City in 1911, tragedy struck. It was an incident that would be written up in newspapers across the country; a horrendous incident that would change legislature, labor laws and hundreds of lives forever. This dreadful event left nearly 150 girls and women dead, and became one of the most murderous fires in the history of New York City. The day was March 26, 1911, and the fire at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory was an historic one. At this time in 1911 the treatment of factory workers was not strictly regulated. Factory and labor laws were not stringently enforced and lacked proper structure. The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory was comprised of about 600 women and 100 men, many of whom were immigrants who spoke little English. The actions that led to the fire, what transpired during the incident and the events after, are significant in the history of New York City and our nation, especially considering…show more content…
The Fifth Avenue Association of the City of New York, the Committee on Safety of the City of New York, among other organizations, worked together and presented issues before the Governor and Legislature of the state. The state government then passed an Act, which created a Commission. Said Commission was appointed to investigate the fire, Harris and Blanck, and their factory's conditions. As one can imagine, this investigation did not bode well for Harris and Blanck. Prior to the Commission’s actions it was already known that the factory was a menace to those who worked within its walls. According to the Preliminary Report of the Factory Investigating Commission, “There were “lack of precautions to prevent fire, inadequate fire-escape facilities, insanitary (sic) conditions that were insidiously undermining the health of the workers were found existing everywhere” (Wagner, 1912, p. 1). The factory was in desperate need of investigating and
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