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“the Triangle Fire”

In: English and Literature

Submitted By Jalissakiana
Words 606
Pages 3
Jalissa Shackleford
Professor Prumith
History 2112 sect. 10
November 14, 2012
“The Triangle Fire” In many cases in the nineteen-hundreds women were the main caregivers for the families rather than the men. Women would also slave for hours upon hours at work for the littlest pay you can imagine. When they did bring home a check it would all go to maintain the household, get food and other things that men should have been responsible for. Women were getting tired of working hard for no pay. After the 1911 fire of the Triangle Waist Factory women felt it was time to speak out. Once women did this it made them feel empowered and they had an equal chance to get what they never had.
In the early 1900 a women did not get as equal rights as men especially in the work place. They often worked many long grueling hours of overtime and never got the right pay they deserved for it. Some women would work more than 120 hours a week and would never see the same pay as man would if a man worked that many hours. To add on to the already hard working hours, most of the times in the work place women were treated like dogs. They were repeatedly treated like the machines they were running. The bosses would yell at them curse at them and even call them names that were too unbearable to mention. Most young women were dissatisfied with the way they were being treated. One evening in September many young women went to secret meeting of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union (ILGWU) to hear what most of the representatives had to say. They told women that they needed take a stand against such horrid conditions. They meet in a court room to decide whether or not this was a good idea. One little shirt waist girl said “I am a working girl- one of those who are suffering from intolerable conditions. I though we came here to decide whether we should all go on strike. The speakers seem to think we came here only to talk. I am tired of so much talk. We have only one thing to do- vote to strike or not strike. For my part, I offer a resolution that we go on a strike-now”. (Document 9) After that speech she made that is exactly what they did; the women of ILGWU went on strike. The strike process was not an easy one. “Women found themselves in a tight corner—pressed by hunger, pressed by cold, pressed by unfilled desires by many sorts” (Document 7). Women had a very hard time when it came to this strike. Many were arrested and taken to jail and presented in court with broken noses and bloody faces. When police would arrest strikers another group would take their pace. The ILGWU then came together and went to city hall to protest against police brutality. After over 100 firms recognize the union, the ILGWU declared the strike over. Soon after this the Triangle Waist Factory went up in flames claiming lives of many young women. To this day, the workers who died are still recognized for their hard efforts of women’s rights. Soon after this the 18th amendment was passed to give women equal rights to do things such as to vote. Women now have a voice on politics and many other things that they never had a say in. The old Triangle Waist Factory is now an historic landmark on the campus at the University of New York in honor of the workers.

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