To install click the Add extension button. That's it.

The source code for the WIKI 2 extension is being checked by specialists of the Mozilla Foundation, Google, and Apple. You could also do it yourself at any point in time.

Kelly Slayton
Congratulations on this excellent venture… what a great idea!
Alexander Grigorievskiy
I use WIKI 2 every day and almost forgot how the original Wikipedia looks like.
What we do. Every page goes through several hundred of perfecting techniques; in live mode. Quite the same Wikipedia. Just better.

Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire
Image of Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire on March 25 - 1911.jpg
DateMarch 25, 1911 (1911-03-25)
Time4:40 PM (Eastern Time)
LocationAsch Building, Manhattan, New York City
Non-fatal injuries71

The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire in New York City on March 25, 1911 was the deadliest industrial disaster in the history of the city, and one of the deadliest in US history.[1] The fire caused the deaths of 146 garment workers – 123 women and 23 men[2] – who died from the fire, smoke inhalation, or falling or jumping to their deaths. Most of the victims were recent Italian and Jewish immigrant women aged 14 to 23;[3][4][5] of the victims whose ages are known, the oldest victim was 43-year-old Providenza Panno, and the youngest were 14-year-olds Kate Leone and "Sara" Rosaria Maltese.[6]

The factory was located on the eighth, ninth and tenth floors of the Asch Building, at 23–29 Washington Place in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of Manhattan. The 1901 building still stands today and is known as the Brown Building. It is part of and owned by New York University.[7]

Because the owners had locked the doors to the stairwells and exits – a then-common practice to prevent workers from taking unauthorized breaks and to reduce theft[8] – many of the workers who could not escape from the burning building jumped from the high windows. The fire led to legislation requiring improved factory safety standards and helped spur the growth of the International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union (ILGWU), which fought for better working conditions for sweatshop workers.

The building has been designated a National Historic Landmark and a New York City landmark.[9]

YouTube Encyclopedic

  • 1/5
    624 168
    4 636
    18 383
    15 106
    169 648
  • The Triangle Shirtwaist Fire - Horror in Manhattan - Extra History
  • The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire Explained: US History Review
  • Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire 1911 New York City Reenactment ILGWU
  • Triangle Shirtwaist Factory
  • The Triangle Fire


March twenty-fifth, 1911. The ninth floor of the Asch Building. The workers of the Triangle Shirtwaist Company are preparing to leave. They have worked a long week (fifty-two hours) making the blouses that have come to symbolize practical, independent womanhood. As they collect their hats and their coats, they chat about Sunday plans. They are almost all women; Mostly Jews who fled Tsarist atrocities, and environmental refugees from Italy. Here in America, they found opportunities they'd never known. In 30 minutes, 146 of them would be dead. It begins with a spark. On the eighth floor, someone tosses a cigarette in a bin filled with cloth scraps and tissue paper patterns. By the time men get the fire buckets, Flames are licking the rows of shirtwaists hanging overhead. Twists of ash fall into scrap bins and land on the oil soaked floor. Frantic, people pile into the rickety fire escape. Others run to the Washington Street staircase, but it's locked. Management likes to force employees to leave via the Green Street stairs, so they can search workers for stolen cloth. A floor manager shoves the women aside and opens the door, saving them, but the fire's close behind. Flames are spreading, sucking up the building's stairwells. A telephone operator warns the executives on the tenth floor. The factory owners evacuate the roof, barely escaping. But no one warns the ninth floor. There, workers discover the danger when flames begin to lick the windows. Everything happens too fast. Flames block the Green Street stairs. Workers pile onto the fire escape, but it collapses, spilling twenty people down an airshaft. Trapped girls tear at the locked Washington Street door. Their clothes and hair begin to catch. Flames begin to press them towards the walls and windows. Heroic elevator operators make as many trips as they can, but the heat warps their rails, and the cars stall. Desperate women jump down the shaft, trying to slide down the cables. On the street, hundreds of onlookers gather to watch the fire. Above, they can see workers gathering at the windows and on the ledges. The fire department arrives, but their tallest ladder only reaches the sixth floor. The girls begin to jump. Landing hard on the street or impaling themselves on a pointed fence. One young man at the window helps girls up onto the sill one after another, as if lifting them onto a streetcar. When the final girl comes, they share one last kiss before they jump. On the other side of the building the huddle of bodies pushing away from the flames finally bursts the windows. 33 people, some already burning, fall to the pavement. It was over. When police count the bodies they find 146 people dead on the street or charred on the factory floor. Most of them are women in their teens or early twenties. The youngest is 14. Among the crowd watching is Francis Perkins, of the consumers' league. Perkins is part of a new generation of progressive activists. College-trained social scientists, who seek change through studying problems, marshalling data, and writing reports. For the last four months, she's been a factory fire in Newark that killed 25 workers. Her conclusion, that American factories need evacuation plans, adequate fire escapes, and sprinkler systems, have just played out before her eyes. At that moment, she swore this would never happen again. And she wasn't the only one. Public outcry followed the fire because these were no ordinary workers. The previous year, they had staged a major strike seeking shorter hours, better pay, and the ability to form unions. The factory bosses, led by Triangle owners Max Blanck and Isaac Harris had hired gangsters and prostitutes to assault them on the picket line. At one point, gangsters had ambushed the strike's leader, Clara Lemlick, and broke six of her ribs. The garment workers had become heroes with newspapers dubbing their movement the uprising of the twenty thousand. They won shorter hours and higher wages, but now those same girls were laying dead on the street waiting for relatives to identify their scorched remains. The public howled for justice. When the garment union staged a funeral march through New York City 120, 000 people showed up to the march, and another 300, 000 people watched. But Blanck and Harris were acquited of manslaughter. They paid out a pittance in a civil suit and got a windfall in insurance money. The unions decided to take matters into their own hands. They demanded an independent committee focused on safety reforms and prepared to take on an insurmountable opponent-- Tammany Hall. Tammany. New York's political machine. But Tammany wasn't much interested in policies and reforms. Instead, Tammany existed to make money through corruption. Its head, Boss Murphy, controlled city and state politics. Tammany politicians were pro-business and sworn enemies of unions and reformers like Perkins. During the garment strike, they had sided with the owners. It was Tammany cops that harrassed workers on the picket line, and Tammany gangsters that broke Clara Lemlich's ribs. Most activists thought that this was a fight that couldn't be won. Tammany, they said, only listened to money. But Perkins wasn't so sure. Years before, she had championed a bill limiting women and minors to a 54-hour work week. And she had received support from Al Smith, a rising Tammany star. He had killed the bill when boss Murphy told him to, of course but she suspected that Smith could be convinced. And he was now the head of the state assembly. But when Perkins pushed for a factory investigation committee, Smith shot it down. The legislature wouldn't listen to an outside commission. However, he added, a hybrid body made up of legislators and with the political support of Tammany, that could get results. The reformers agreed, reluctantly, expecting Smith to de-fang the body. But things were changing at Tammany. Boss Murphy had quietly been pushing for reform. He had watched New York progressives make gains, catapulting Theodore Roosevelt to the White House. He saw the explosion of enthusiasm during the garment workers' strike and Tammany was getting killed in state elections. Their old base of Irish immigrants were moving out of Tammany districts, replaced by Jewish and Italian voters who they had a hard time connecting with. Murphy slowly replaced the old guard with men like Smith. Men who wanted to do more than just give out coal in the winter or a bit of money in hard times. Men who wanted legislation that would actually improve their constituents' lives. As it happened, many of the Triangle victims lived in Tammany districts and they were exactly the group that Murphy had struggled to reach. He ordered Smith to take a stand on Triangle. From now on, Tammany would be the party of workers. The Factory Commission proved anything but toothless. They built an investigation and legal team from a who's who of progressive activists. The socialist firebrand, Clara Lemlich, the head of the Shirtwaist Strike, came aboard as an investigator. The head of the Women's Trade Union League joined as one of the expert commissioners. Francis Perkins helped recruit, train, and supervise investigators. The results came fast. In the first six months, the Commission collected 3,500 pages of testimony from 222 witnesses. Its ten investigators fanned out, inspecting 2,000 factories in nine cities. What the legislators saw shocked them. Triangle was not an anomalie. In one factory, the passage to the fire escape was no bigger than a hatch. Perkins forced the head of the state senate to crawl through it. They raided a cannery where children were forced to work until they passed out from exhaustion. In one shop, a factory owner tried to hide his child laborers by packing them into an elevator and then stopping it between floors. By the end of 1911, Commission legislators drafted fifteen new bills covering fire safety, factory conditions, and employment rules for women and children. Eight of those bills became law. Automatic sprinklers, fire drills, and fireproof stairwells were now mandatory in highrises. All exit doors had to stay unlocked. It addressed every hazard at Triangle. Yet the appetite for reform kept growing. When Perkins made a new push for her fifty hour workweek bill Boss Murphy tried to kill it with an unexpected late-night vote but Tammany legislators revolted stalling until a key legislator could sprint all the way back to the capitol and cast the winning ballot. The winds were shifting. Reluctantly, Boss Murphy adopted the progressive agenda of the Factory Commission. The result was a landslide in the 1913 elections. One after another, Commission bills passed. The Commission dissolved in 1915, with 36 of its bills enshrined in law. In addition to fire safety, they protected child workers, created a Department of Labor, mandated that employers provide restrooms, and founded a workman's compensation system for those injured on the job. Within four years of the fire, New York had the strongest labor laws in the nation. This political earthquake remade American politics and propelled Smith to the governor's mansion More importantly, it laid the groundwork for a new form of liberal politics that another New York Democrat, Franklin Roosevelt, would carry into the White House. And that's not all he carried with him. Key Factory Commission members became F.D.R.'s allies in the Senate, and Francis Perkins joined the administration as his Secretary of Labor, making her the first woman to serve in the Cabinet. Former Commission members helped craft the New Deal much of which was just a federal version of the laws they passed in the wake of the Triangle fire. The lives lost, indeed, had not been in vain. Even though the Triangle fire happened over a century ago, the laws it created are still with us, and they have saved thousands of lives. In fact, apart from the September 11th attacks, to this day America has never had a workplace disaster as deadly as Triangle. So when you're faced with a horrible social problem, one that people say can't be solved because of apathy or powerful interests, remember the Triangle and get to work.



A horse-drawn fire engine en route to the burning factory
A horse-drawn fire engine en route to the burning factory

The Triangle Waist Company[10] factory occupied the eighth, ninth, and tenth floors of the 10-story Asch Building on the northwest corner of Greene Street and Washington Place, just east of Washington Square Park, in the Greenwich Village area of New York City. Under the ownership of Max Blanck and Isaac Harris, the factory produced women's blouses, known as "shirtwaists". The factory normally employed about 500 workers, mostly young immigrant women, who worked nine hours a day on weekdays plus seven hours on Saturdays,[11] earning for their 52 hours of work between $7 and $12 a week,[8] the equivalent of $171 to $293 a week in 2016 currency, or $3.20 to $5.50 per hour.[12]

At approximately 4:40 pm on Saturday, March 25, 1911, as the workday was ending, a fire flared up in a scrap bin under one of the cutter's tables at the northeast corner of the eighth floor.[13] The first fire alarm was sent at 4:45 pm by a passerby on Washington Place who saw smoke coming from the eighth floor.[14] Both owners of the factory were in attendance and had invited their children to the factory on that afternoon.[15] The Fire Marshal concluded that the likely cause of the fire was the disposal of an unextinguished match or cigarette butt in the scrap bin, which held two months' worth of accumulated cuttings by the time of the fire.[16] Beneath the table in the wooden bin were hundreds of pounds of scraps which were left over from the several thousand shirtwaists that had been cut at that table. The scraps piled up from the last time the bin was emptied, coupled with the hanging fabrics that surrounded it; the steel trim was the only thing that was not highly flammable.[13] Although smoking was banned in the factory, cutters were known to sneak cigarettes, exhaling the smoke through their lapels to avoid detection.[17] A New York Times article suggested that the fire may have been started by the engines running the sewing machines. A series of articles in Collier's noted a pattern of arson among certain sectors of the garment industry whenever their particular product fell out of fashion or had excess inventory in order to collect insurance. The Insurance Monitor, a leading industry journal, observed that shirtwaists had recently fallen out of fashion, and that insurance for manufacturers of them was "fairly saturated with moral hazard." Although Blanck and Harris were known for having had four previous suspicious fires at their companies, arson was not suspected in this case.[15]

The building's south side, with windows marked X from which 50 women jumped
The building's south side, with windows marked X from which 50 women jumped
62 people jumped or fell from windows
62 people jumped or fell from windows

A bookkeeper on the eighth floor was able to warn employees on the tenth floor via telephone, but there was no audible alarm and no way to contact staff on the ninth floor.[18] According to survivor Yetta Lubitz, the first warning of the fire on the ninth floor arrived at the same time as the fire itself.[19] Although the floor had a number of exits, including two freight elevators, a fire escape, and stairways down to Greene Street and Washington Place, flames prevented workers from descending the Greene Street stairway, and the door to the Washington Place stairway was locked to prevent theft by the workers; the locked doors allowed managers to check the women's purses.[20] The foreman who held the stairway door key had already escaped by another route.[21] Dozens of employees escaped the fire by going up the Greene Street stairway to the roof. Other survivors were able to jam themselves into the elevators while they continued to operate.[22]

Within three minutes, the Greene Street stairway became unusable in both directions.[23] Terrified employees crowded onto the single exterior fire escape, which city officials had allowed Asch to erect instead of the required third staircase.[13] It was a flimsy and poorly anchored iron structure which may have been broken before the fire. It soon twisted and collapsed from the heat and overload, spilling about 20 victims nearly 100 feet (30 m) to their deaths on the concrete pavement below. Elevator operators Joseph Zito[24] and Gaspar Mortillalo saved many lives by traveling three times up to the ninth floor for passengers, but Mortillalo was eventually forced to give up when the rails of his elevator buckled under the heat. Some victims pried the elevator doors open and jumped into the empty shaft, trying to slide down the cables or to land on top of the car. The weight and impacts of these bodies warped the elevator car and made it impossible for Zito to make another attempt. William Gunn Shepard, a reporter at the tragedy, would say that "I learned a new sound that day, a sound more horrible than description can picture – the thud of a speeding living body on a stone sidewalk".[25] Even once firefighters arrived, their ladders were only long enough to reach as high as the sixth to seventh floors.[1]

A large crowd of bystanders gathered on the street, witnessing 62 people jumping or falling to their deaths from the burning building.[26] Louis Waldman, later a New York Socialist state assemblyman, described the scene years later:[27]

One Saturday afternoon in March of that year—March 25, to be precise—I was sitting at one of the reading tables in the old Astor Library. … It was a raw, unpleasant day and the comfortable reading room seemed a delightful place to spend the remaining few hours until the library closed. I was deeply engrossed in my book when I became aware of fire engines racing past the building. By this time I was sufficiently Americanized to be fascinated by the sound of fire engines. Along with several others in the library, I ran out to see what was happening, and followed crowds of people to the scene of the fire.

A few blocks away, the Asch Building at the corner of Washington Place and Greene Street was ablaze. When we arrived at the scene, the police had thrown up a cordon around the area and the firemen were helplessly fighting the blaze. The eighth, ninth, and tenth stories of the building were now an enormous roaring cornice of flames.

Word had spread through the East Side, by some magic of terror, that the plant of the Triangle Waist Company was on fire and that several hundred workers were trapped. Horrified and helpless, the crowds—I among them—looked up at the burning building, saw girl after girl appear at the reddened windows, pause for a terrified moment, and then leap to the pavement below, to land as mangled, bloody pulp. This went on for what seemed a ghastly eternity. Occasionally a girl who had hesitated too long was licked by pursuing flames and, screaming with clothing and hair ablaze, plunged like a living torch to the street. Life nets held by the firemen were torn by the impact of the falling bodies.

The emotions of the crowd were indescribable. Women were hysterical, scores fainted; men wept as, in paroxysms of frenzy, they hurled themselves against the police lines.

The remainder waited until smoke and fire overcame them. The fire department arrived quickly but was unable to stop the flames, as there were no ladders available that could reach beyond the sixth floor. The fallen bodies and falling victims also made it difficult for the fire department to approach the building.

Bodies of the victims being placed in coffins on the sidewalk
Bodies of the victims being placed in coffins on the sidewalk
People and horses draped in black walk in procession in memory of the victims
People and horses draped in black walk in procession in memory of the victims


Although early references of the death toll ranged from 141[28] to 148,[29] almost all modern references agree that 146 people died as a result of the fire: 123 women and 23 men.[30][31][32][33][34][35][36] Most victims died of burns, asphyxiation, blunt impact injuries, or a combination of the three.[37]

The first person to jump was a man, and another man was seen kissing a young woman at the window before they both jumped to their deaths.[38]

Bodies of the victims were taken to Charities Pier (also called Misery Lane), located at 26th street and the East River, for identification by friends and relatives.[39] Victims were interred in sixteen different cemeteries.[30] Twenty-two victims of the fire were buried by the Hebrew Free Burial Association[40] in a special section at Mount Richmond Cemetery. In some instances, their tombstones refer to the fire.[41] Six victims remained unidentified until Michael Hirsch, a historian, completed four years of researching newspaper articles and other sources for missing persons and was able to identify each of them by name.[30][31] Those six victims were buried together in the Cemetery of the Evergreens in Brooklyn. Originally interred elsewhere on the grounds, their remains now lie beneath a monument to the tragedy, a large marble slab featuring a kneeling woman.[30][42][43]

Consequences and legacy

The company's owners, Max Blanck and Isaac Harris, who survived the fire by fleeing to the building's roof when the fire began, were indicted on charges of first- and second-degree manslaughter in mid-April; the pair's trial began on December 4, 1911.[44] Max Steuer, counsel for the defendants, managed to destroy the credibility of one of the survivors, Kate Alterman, by asking her to repeat her testimony a number of times, which she did without altering key phrases. Steuer argued to the jury that Alterman and possibly other witnesses had memorized their statements, and might even have been told what to say by the prosecutors. The prosecution charged that the owners knew the exit doors were locked at the time in question. The investigation found that the locks were intended to be locked during working hours based on the findings from the fire,[45] but the defense stressed that the prosecution failed to prove that the owners knew that. The jury acquitted the two men of first- and second-degree manslaughter, but they were found liable of wrongful death during a subsequent civil suit in 1913 in which plaintiffs were awarded compensation in the amount of $75 per deceased victim. The insurance company paid Blanck and Harris about $60,000 more than the reported losses, or about $400 per casualty.

In 1913, Blanck was once again arrested for locking the door in his factory during working hours. He was fined $20.[46]

Rose Schneiderman, a prominent socialist and union activist, gave a speech at the memorial meeting held in the Metropolitan Opera House on April 2, 1911, to an audience largely made up of the members of the Women's Trade Union League. She used the fire as an argument for factory workers to organize:

Tombstone of fire victim Tillie Kupferschmidt at the Hebrew Free Burial Association's Mount Richmond Cemetery
Tombstone of fire victim Tillie Kupferschmidt at the Hebrew Free Burial Association's Mount Richmond Cemetery

I would be a traitor to these poor burned bodies if I came here to talk good fellowship. We have tried you good people of the public and we have found you wanting… We have tried you citizens; we are trying you now, and you have a couple of dollars for the sorrowing mothers, brothers and sisters by way of a charity gift. But every time the workers come out in the only way they know to protest against conditions which are unbearable, the strong hand of the law is allowed to press down heavily upon us.

Public officials have only words of warning to us—warning that we must be intensely peaceable, and they have the workhouse just back of all their warnings. The strong hand of the law beats us back, when we rise, into the conditions that make life unbearable.

I can't talk fellowship to you who are gathered here. Too much blood has been spilled. I know from my experience it is up to the working people to save themselves. The only way they can save themselves is by a strong working-class movement.[47]

Others in the community, and in particular in the ILGWU,[48] drew a different lesson from events. In New York City, a Committee on Public Safety was formed, headed by eyewitness Frances Perkins[49] – who 22 years later would be appointed United States Secretary of Labor – to identify specific problems and lobby for new legislation, such as the bill to grant workers shorter hours in a work week, known as the "54-hour Bill". The committee's representatives in Albany obtained the backing of Tammany Hall's Al Smith, the Majority Leader of the Assembly, and Robert F. Wagner, the Majority Leader of the Senate, and this collaboration of machine politicians and reformers – also known as "do-gooders" or "goo-goos" – got results, especially since Tammany's chief, Charles F. Murphy, realized the advantage to be had from being on the side of the angels.[8]

The New York State Legislature then created the Factory Investigating Commission to "investigate factory conditions in this and other cities and to report remedial measures of legislation to prevent hazard or loss of life among employees through fire, unsanitary conditions, and occupational diseases."[50] The Commission was chaired by Wagner and co-chaired by Al Smith. They held a series of widely publicized investigations around the state, interviewing 222 witnesses and taking 3,500 pages of testimony. They hired field agents to do on-site inspections of factories. They started with the issue of fire safety and moved on to broader issues of the risks of injury in the factory environment. Their findings led to thirty-eight new laws regulating labor in New York state, and gave them a reputation as leading progressive reformers working on behalf of the working class. In the process, they changed Tammany's reputation from mere corruption to progressive endeavors to help the workers.[51][52] New York City's Fire Chief John Kenlon told the investigators that his department had identified more than 200 factories where conditions made a fire like that at the Triangle Factory possible.[53] The State Commissions's reports helped modernize the state's labor laws, making New York State "one of the most progressive states in terms of labor reform."[54][55] New laws mandated better building access and egress, fireproofing requirements, the availability of fire extinguishers, the installation of alarm systems and automatic sprinklers, better eating and toilet facilities for workers, and limited the number of hours that women and children could work.[56] In the years from 1911 to 1913, sixty of the sixty-four new laws recommended by the Commission were legislated with the support of Governor William Sulzer.[8]

As a result of the fire, the American Society of Safety Engineers was founded in New York City on October 14, 1911.[57]

The last living survivor of the fire was Rose Freedman, née Rosenfeld, who died in Beverly Hills, California, on February 15, 2001 at the age of 107. She was two days away from her 18th birthday at the time of the fire, which she survived by following the company's executives and being rescued from the roof of the building. As a result of her experience, she became a lifelong supporter of unions.[58]

Remember the Triangle Fire Coalition


The Remember the Triangle Fire Coalition is an alliance of more than 200 organizations and individuals formed in 2008 to encourage and coordinate nationwide activities commemorating the centennial of the fire[59] and to create a permanent public art memorial to honor its victims.[60][61] The founding partners included Workers United, the New York City Fire Museum, New York University (the current owner of the building), Workmen's Circle, Museum at Eldridge Street, the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, the Lower East Side Tenement Museum, the Gotham Center for New York City History, the Bowery Poetry Club and others. Members of the Coalition include arts organizations, schools, workers’ rights groups, labor unions, human rights and women’s rights groups, ethnic organizations, historical preservation societies, activists, and scholars, as well as families of the victims and survivors.

The Coalition grew out of a public art project called "Chalk" created by New York City filmmaker Ruth Sergel.[62] Every year beginning in 2004, Sergel and volunteer artists went across New York City on the anniversary of the fire to inscribe in chalk the names, ages, and causes of death of the victims in front of their former homes, often including drawings of flowers, tombstones or a triangle.[59][63]


Hilda Solis, the American Secretary of Labor, seen on the overhead screen, speaking at the Centennial Memorial; the Brown (Asch) Building is on the far right.
Hilda Solis, the American Secretary of Labor, seen on the overhead screen, speaking at the Centennial Memorial; the Brown (Asch) Building is on the far right.
The commemoration drew thousands of people, many holding aloft "146 Shirtwaist-Kites" conceived by artist Annie Lanzillotto and designed and fabricated by members of The Remember the Triangle Fire Coalition, with the names of the victims on sashes, as they listened to speakers.
The commemoration drew thousands of people, many holding aloft "146 Shirtwaist-Kites" conceived by artist Annie Lanzillotto and designed and fabricated by members of The Remember the Triangle Fire Coalition, with the names of the victims on sashes, as they listened to speakers.

From July 2009 through the weeks leading up to the 100th anniversary, the Coalition served as a clearinghouse to organize some 200 activities as varied as academic conferences, films, theater performances, art shows, concerts, readings, awareness campaigns, walking tours, and parades that were held in and around New York City, and in cities across the nation, including San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, Minneapolis, Boston and Washington, D.C.[59][59]

The ceremony, which was held in front of the building where the fire took place, was preceded by a march through Greenwich Village by thousands of people, some carrying shirtwaists – women's blouses – on poles, with sashes commemorating the names of those who died in the fire. Speakers included the United States Secretary of Labor, Hilda L. Solis, U.S. Senator Charles Schumer, New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, the actor Danny Glover, and Suzanne Pred Bass, the grandniece of Rosie Weiner, a young woman killed in the blaze. Most of the speakers that day called for the strengthening of workers’ rights and organized labor.[64][65]

At 4:45 PM EST, the moment the first fire alarm was sounded in 1911, hundreds of bells rang out in cities and towns across the nation. For this commemorative act, the Remember the Triangle Fire Coalition organized hundreds of churches, schools, fire houses, and private individuals in the New York City region and across the nation. The Coalition maintains on its website a national map denoting each of the bells that rang that afternoon.[66]

Permanent memorial

The Coalition has launched an effort to create a permanent public art memorial for the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire at the site of the 1911 fire in lower Manhattan. In 2012, the Coalition announced a national design competition for the memorial, and formed a design search committee, with representatives from Workers United, New York University, the New York City Fire Department, the Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation & Archives, Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, Manhattan Community Board 2, family members of the victims, historians, and community members.[67][68] On December 22, 2015, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that $1.5 million from state economic development funds would be earmarked to build the Triangle Fire Memorial.[69]

Plans for the memorial include steel panels that wrap around the building, as well as upper and lower panels that will list the names of the victims and tell the story of the fire. A reflective steel beam will extend from the corner of the building to the eighth floor, the place of origin for the fire.[70]

In 2011, the Coalition established that the goal of the permanent memorial would be:

  • To honor the memory of those who died from the fire;
  • To affirm the dignity of all workers;
  • To value women’s work;
  • To remember the movement for worker safety and social justice stirred by this tragedy;
  • To inspire future generations of activists

In popular culture

Films and television


Theatre and dance

  • Naomi Wallace's 1996 play Slaughter City includes a character, the Textile Worker, that was killed in the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire, and the play itself was inspired by several labor events throughout the 20th century, including the fire.[83][84]
  • In Ain Gordon's play Birdseed Bundles (2000), the Triangle fire is a major dramatic engine of the story.[85]
  • The musical Rags – book by Joseph Stein, lyrics by Stephen Schwartz, and music by Charles Strouse – incorporates the Triangle Shirtwaist fire in the second act.[86]
  • In March 2012, the modern dance concert One Hundred Forty-Six by Denise J. Murphy explored the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire through movement, text, video, photography and original music.[87]
  • Scintille ("Sparks") is a 2012 Italian political play by Laura Sicignano which centers on the fire and the circumstances surrounding it.[88]
  • Triangle, a stage musical with music by Curtis Moore, lyrics by Thomas Mizer, and book by Thomas Mizer, Curtis Moore and Joshua Scher, deals with the Shirtwaist Factory fire on the 100th anniversary of the tragedy through the eyes of a scientist whose laboratory is located in the Asch Building. The play was premiered at TheatreWorks in Palo Alto, California in July 2015.[89]


  • Triangle: The Fire That Changed America by David Von Drehle, 2003 (ISBN 978-0802141514)
  • Triangle, a 2006 novel by Katharine Weber (ISBN 978-0374281427), tells the story of the last living survivor of the fire, whose story hides the truth of her experience on March 25, 1911, raising the questions of who owns history and whose stories prevail.
  • Margaret Peterson Haddix's 2007 historical novel for young adults, Uprising, deals with immigration, women's rights, and the labor movement, with the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire as a central element.
  • Esther Friesner's Threads and Flames deals with a young girl, named Raisa, who works at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory at the time of the fire.
  • Deborah Hopkinson's 2004 historical novel for young adults, Hear My Sorrow: The Diary of Angela Denoto.
  • Mary Jane Auch's 2004 historical novel for young adults, Ashes of Roses tells the tale of Margaret Rose Nolan, a young girl who works at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory at the time of the fire, along with her sister and her friends.
  • The comic book The Goon issue #37 tells the story of a similar fire at a girdle factory that takes the lives of 142 women who worked there. After the fire, the surviving women attempt to unionize and the Goon comes to their aid after union busters try to force them back to work. Author Eric Powell specifically cites the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire as an inspiration for the story.[citation needed]
  • Vivian Schurfranz's novel Rachel, from the Sunfire series of historical romances for young adults, is about a Polish Jewish immigrant girl who works at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory at the time of the fire.
  • Robert Pinsky's poem Shirt describes the fire.[90]
  • "Mayn Rue Platz" (My Resting Place), a poem written by former Triangle employee Morris Rosenfeld, has been set to music, in Yiddish and English, by many artists, including Geoff Berner[91] and June Tabor.[92]
  • In Alice Hoffman's novel The Museum of Extraordinary Things, the fire is one of the main elements of the plot.
  • "Afterlife", a 2013 short story by Stephen King, centers around Isaac Harris in Purgatory talking about the fire.
  • Annie Lanzillotto's book of poetry Schistsong (2013) contains the poem songs Ballad for Joe Zito and Girls Girls about the unsung heroic elevator operator, and which imagine the American dreams of the young NY garment workers.[93]
  • In a section of Edward Rutherfurd's novel New York, a protagonist's sister, from an Italian immigrant family, dies after jumping from a window to escape the fire.
  • Sholem Asch's 1946 novel East River tells the story of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire through the eyes of Irish girl who was working at the factory at a time of the fire.

See also



  1. ^ a b "The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire". Retrieved June 10, 2015.
  2. ^ "Sweatshop Tragedy Ignites Fight for Workplace Safety" on the American Postal Workers Union website
  3. ^ "Triangle Shirtwaist Fire". Jewish Women: An Historical Encyclopedia on Jewish Women's Archive
  4. ^ Stacy, Greg. "Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Marks a Sad Centennial" Archived May 18, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.. via Online Journal (March 24, 2011)
  5. ^ Diner, Hasia R. "Lecture: The Triangle Shirtwaist Fire and the Shared Italian-Jewish History of New York"[permanent dead link] Italian-American Magazine (March 16, 2011)
  6. ^ Von Drehle, David. "List of Victims". Triangle: The Fire That Changed America. Retrieved November 28, 2012.
  7. ^ "23 Washington Place, Manhattan" New York City Geographic Information System map
  8. ^ a b c d Lifflander, Matthew L. "The Tragedy That Changed New York" New York Archives (Summer 2011)
  9. ^ Gale Harris (March 25, 2003). "Brown Building (formerly Asch Building) Designation Report" (PDF). New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission. Archived from the original (PDF) on August 7, 2012. Retrieved February 6, 2012.
  10. ^ "Complete Transcript of Triangle Fire". Cornell University ILR School DigitalCommons@ILR. November 1, 1911. p. 22. Retrieved March 21, 2011.
  11. ^ von Drehle, p. 105
  12. ^ CPI Inflation Calculator United States Bureau of Labor Statistics
  13. ^ a b c von Drehle, p.118
  14. ^ Stein, p. 224
  15. ^ a b von Drehle, pp. 162–163
  16. ^ Stein p. 33
  17. ^ von Drehle, p.119
  18. ^ von Drehle, p.131
  19. ^ von Drehle, pp.141–2
  20. ^ Lange, Brenda. The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire, Infobase Publishing, 2008, p. 58
  21. ^ PBS: "Introduction: Triangle Fire", accessed March 1, 2011
  22. ^ Hall, Angus (ed.) (1987) Crimes of Horror Reed Editions. p. 23 ISBN 1-85051-170-5
  23. ^ von Drehle, pp. 143–4
  24. ^ von Drehle, p. 157
  25. ^ von Drehle, p. 126
  26. ^ Shepherd, William G. (March 27, 1911). "Eyewitness at the Triangle". Retrieved September 2, 2007.
  27. ^ Waldman, Louis (1944). Labor Lawyer. New York: E. P. Dutton. pp. 32–33. ASIN B0000D5IYA.
  28. ^ Staff (March 26, 1911) "141 Men and Girls Die in Waist Factory Fire" The New York Times. Accessed December 20, 2009.
  29. ^ Staff (March 26, 1911). "New York Fire Kills 148: Girl Victims Leap to Death from Factory" (reprint). Chicago Sunday Tribune. p. 1. Retrieved October 3, 2007.
  30. ^ a b c d Berger, Joseph (February 20, 2011). "100 Years Later, the Roll of the Dead in a Factory Fire Is Complete". The New York Times. Retrieved February 21, 2011.
  31. ^ a b von Drehle, passim
  32. ^ Staff (March 26, 1997) "In Memoriam: The Triangle Shirtwaist Fire" The New York Times
  33. ^ "The Triangle Factory Fire". The Kheel Center, Cornell University.
  34. ^ "98th Anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire". Archived 2009-03-30 at the Wayback Machine. New York City Fire Department.
  35. ^ "Labor Department Remembers 95th Anniversary of Sweatshop Fire". Archived 2011-03-05 at the Wayback Machine. U.S. Department of Labor.
  36. ^ Stein, passim
  37. ^ von Drehle, pp.271–83
  38. ^ von Drehle, pp. 155–7
  39. ^ Stein, p.100
  40. ^ Dwyer, Jim (March 31, 2009). "On Staten Island, A Jewish Cemetery Where All Are Equals In Death". The New York Times.
  41. ^ "HFBA Timeline". Archived from the original on February 9, 2009. Retrieved March 26, 2009.
  42. ^ "Evergreens Cemetery". Archived from the original on June 3, 2009. Retrieved May 28, 2009. Evergreens Cemetery reports that there were originally eight burials, one male and six females, along with some unidentified remains. One of the female victims was later identified and her body removed to another cemetery. Other accounts do not mention the unidentified remains at all. Rose Freedman was the last living survivor of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire.(1893–2001)
  43. ^ Swanson, Lillian (April 8, 2011). "A Grave Marker Unveiled for Six Triangle Fire Victims Who Had Been Unknowns". The Jewish Daily Forward.
  44. ^ Stein p.158
  45. ^ von Drehle, p.220
  46. ^ Hoenig, John M. "The Triangle Fire of 1911", History Magazine, April/May 2005.
  47. ^ Schneiderman, Rose. "We Have Found You Wanting" (reprint).
  48. ^ Jones, Gerard (2005). Men of Tomorrow. New York: Basic Books. ISBN 0-465-03657-0.
  49. ^ Downey, Kirsten.The Woman Behind the New Deal. Nan A. Talese, 2009 pp.33-36
  50. ^ Staff (October 11, 1911) "Seek Way to Lessen Factory Dangers", The New York Times
  51. ^ "Robert Ferdinand Wagner" in Dictionary of American Biography (1977)
  52. ^ Slayton, Robert A. (2001) Empire Statesman: The Rise and Redemption of Al Smith New York: Free Press. ISBN 0684863022
  53. ^ Staff (October 14, 1911) "Factory Firetraps Found by Hundreds" The New York Times
  54. ^ Greenwald, Richard A. (2005) The Triangle Fire, the Protocols of Peace, and Industrial Democracy in Progressive Era New York Philadelphia: Temple University Press, p.128
  55. ^ Staff (March 19, 2011) "Triangle Shirtwaist: The birth of the New Deal" The Economist p.39.
  56. ^ "At the State Archives: Online Exhibit Remembers the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire" New York Archives (Summer 2011)
  57. ^ American Society of Safety Engineers (2001). "A Brief History of the American Society of Safety Engineers: A Century of Safety". Retrieved March 20, 2011.
  58. ^ a b Martin, Douglas (February 17, 2001) "Rose Freedman, Last Survivor of Triangle Fire, Dies at 107" The New York Times
  59. ^ a b c d Greenhouse, Steven. "City Room:In a Tragedy, a Mission to Remember" New York Times (March 19, 2011)
  60. ^ Jannuzzi, Kristine. "NYU Commemorates the 100th Anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire". NYU Alumni Connect (January 2011) on the New York University website
  61. ^ Solis, Hilda L. "What the Triangle Shirtwaist fire means for workers now" Washington Post (March 18. 2011)
  62. ^ "Chalk website". March 25, 1911. Retrieved August 7, 2013.
  63. ^ Molyneux, Michael (April 3, 2005) "City Lore: Memorials in Chalk" The New York Times
  64. ^ Fouhy, Beth. "NYC marks 100th anniversary of Triangle fire" Associated Press (March 25, 2011) on
  65. ^ Safronova, Valeriya and Hirshon, Nicholas. "Remembering tragic 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist inferno, marchers flood Greenwich Village streets" New York Daily News (March 26, 2011)
  66. ^ "Bells" on the Remember the Triangle Fire Coalition website
  67. ^ Swanson, Lillian. "Paying Tribute To the Fire’s Pained Legacy" The Jewish Daily Forward (March 4, 2011)
  68. ^ Saulnier, Beth. "Mass Appeal" Cornell Alumni Magazine (March/April 2011)
  69. ^ Greenhouse, Steven. (December 22, 2015)"$1.5 Million State Grant to Pay for Triangle Fire Memorial" The New York Times
  70. ^ "Memorial to honor Triangle Shirtwaist fire victims". Retrieved 2017-09-05.
  71. ^ The Crime of Carelessness on IMDb
  72. ^ IMDb: Children of Eve (1915) Retrieved July 10, 2012.
  73. ^ With These Hands on IMDb , accessed February 18, 2011
  74. ^ "Triangle Factory Fire Scandal (TV 1979)". Retrieved February 18, 2011.
  75. ^ "Those Who Know Don't Tell". Retrieved February 18, 2011.
  76. ^ "Triangle Fire". Retrieved February 19, 2011.
  77. ^ Hale, Mike (February 27, 2011). "Triangle Fire Remembered on PBS and HBO". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved March 23, 2018.
  78. ^ "Yiddish Penny Songs: Dos lid fun nokh dem fayer fun di korbones fun 33 Washington Place".
  79. ^ "Thanks for the Ether - Rasputina". Allmusic.
  80. ^ Over the Border at AllMusic
  81. ^ Wirewalkers and Assassins at AllMusic
  82. ^ "Commemorating the 100th Anniversary of the Triangle Shirt Waist Fire". Beyond the Pale. WBAI. 2011-03-20. Retrieved 2018-03-23.
  83. ^ Reid, Kerry (May 8, 2011). "Defiance in 'Ismene', 'Slaughter City'". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved January 10, 2018.
  84. ^ Donaldson, Erin (March 15, 2010). "Dark Humor in 'Slaughter City' Emphasizes Industry Ills". The Daily Californian. Retrieved January 10, 2018.
  85. ^ Lefkowitz, David. "OOB's DTW Runs Out of Birdseed, April 2" Archived 2012-10-20 at the Wayback Machine..
  86. ^ Geselowitz., Gabriela (September 1, 2017). "Get Ready for the Revival of a Musical You've Probably Never Heard of From the Author of 'Fiddler'". Tablet. Retrieved 2018-03-23.
  87. ^ "One Hundred Forty-Six: A Moving Memorial to the Victims of the 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire" on the Remember the Triangle Fire website
  88. ^ "Sparks" Theatro Cargo Stagione 2015/16 website
  89. ^ "Triangle". Curtis Moore. Retrieved 2018-03-23.
  90. ^ Scrutchfield, Lori; Nelson, Cary. "On "Shirt"". Modern American Poetry. Southern Illinois University. Retrieved 2018-03-23.
  91. ^ "Victory Party, by Geoff Berner". Bandcamp. Retrieved 2018-03-23.
  92. ^ Brocken, Michael (January 28, 2013). The British Folk Revival: 1944–2002. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd. p. 276. ISBN 9781409493600.
  93. ^[permanent dead link]


Further reading

External links


Contemporaneous accounts



Memorials and centennial

This page was last edited on 8 December 2018, at 20:15
Basis of this page is in Wikipedia. Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 Unported License. Non-text media are available under their specified licenses. Wikipedia® is a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. WIKI 2 is an independent company and has no affiliation with Wikimedia Foundation.