A single fire, started in a rag bin of a New York City building, unfortunately claimed the lives of 146 garment workers in a matter of minutes (Naden, 3). The devastating fire on March 25, 1911 affected US society, was captured in the media and print post, and led to several different fire laws being put into play.
The tragic outcome of the Triangle Shirtwaist Company Fire had a countless number of families and individuals left in horror. Many of the workers were women and girls, some as young as fourteen years old (Llewellyn, 3). The reactions of the citizens led to changes including sanitary conditions for garment workers. After hearing the news of the fire, the Women’s Trade Union League, an organization to support the efforts of women to organize labor unions, demanded that more action be taken than just simply establishing the cause of the fire, which was said to be a cigarette (Naden, 49). The public’s devastation convinced them to make an effort to prevent another fire from occurring, especially since a majority of the victims were in fact women. The work they performed demonstrated the mourning of the loved ones killed in the destructive fire. The public’s outrage by the disastrous fire was followed by the change in fire safety legislation and reform demonstrations.
The outcome of the Triangle fire fuelled the energy of the media as well as average citizens. As grief flooded the streets of New York, numerous articles from newspapers, poems and even songs were dedicated to the workers that perished. Because the building was located in New York, the New York Times had pages of articles describing the fire, the amount of deaths, and the horror that took place. One particular article is named “141 Men and Girls Die in Waist Factory Fire; Trapped High Up in Washington Place Building; Street Strewn with Bodies; Piles of Dead Inside” and describes to the public about how the people had two choices. They either stayed in the building and burned to death, or...
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