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Conditions were horrid and disaster was inevitable, and disaster did strike in March, 1911.
Buildings, like the Asch Building occupied by the Triangle Waist Company, were successfully constructed to be fireproof, but prior to the Triangle fire, building safety was not a primary concern, which was evident by infrequent inspections, barricaded fire escapes, and insufficient fire The Triangle Waistshirt Factory fire was one of the worst fires after the turn of the 19th century.
It took the lives of over one-hundred and forty people, most of which died indirectly from the fires and smoke.
The fire proved to America what can and will happen if we over-look safety regulations and over-crowd buildings.
Unfortunately, 146 lives are taken before we fully understand this concept.
William Randall Hearst, a newspaper owner, and thorn in the D.
A., Charles Whitman’s side, used his press skills and jabs to refocus the D. to the plight of the Triangle fire “horror” and to the legal responsibility that would be according to Hearst officially belong to the city...
Several groups like the moneyed, educated elite women, the muckrakers, the Labor Unions, and the political machines that controlled neighborhoods of New York pushed for political, economic, and legal changes to the industrial systems - in a democratic social time of reform – they were like much welcomed rain after a long drought.
Newspaper reporters, in New York, sensationalized the Triangle Shirtwaist fire complete with photos of bodies lying broken on the sidewalk, coffins of charred remains, and bodies falling from burning windows.
During the early 1900s industrial fires or accidents were common place; injuries and the loss of life may have outraged a few people but like all tragedies the outrage would pass quickly and it would back to business as usual.
One such tragedy occurred on Saturday, March 25th, 1911, it was closing time at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory and hundreds of employees were preparing to leave when a fire broke out on the 8th floor trapping Jewish and Italian immigrants, the majority of them young women.