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Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire: Topics in Chronicling America

146 garment workers died in a tragic New York City factory fire in 1911. This guide provides materials for researching the topic of the "Triangle Shirtwaist factory fire" in the Chronicling America digital collection of historic newspapers.

Introduction

Sketch of the bodies of factory fire victims, lying on the street, where they struck the pavement after jumping from the burning building. March 26, 1911. New-York Tribune (New York, NY), Image 1. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers.

At approximately 4:40 p.m. on March 25, 1911, a savage fire breaks out at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory in New York City. With doors to stairwells and exits locked, 146 garment workers perish, mostly young immigrant women, some of which leap from windows to their deaths. Though factory owners are acquitted of any responsibility, the tragedy leads to pivotal labor law reforms in New York. Read more about it!

The information in this guide focuses on primary source materials found in the digitized historic newspapers from the digital collection Chronicling America.

The timeline below highlights important dates related to this topic and a section of this guide provides some suggested search strategies for further research in the collection.

Timeline

March 25, 1911 A fire breaks out at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory in New York City, killing 146 people.
April 11, 1911 Factory co-owners Isaac Harris and Max Blanck are indicted on charges of manslaughter.
December 1911 Harris and Blanck are brought to trial and found not guilty.