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So here is where we are….Tons of Immigrants…And they are heading into the cities…

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Mulberry Street – “Little Italy”


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Hester Street –

Jewish Section


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Chinatown, NYC


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Americans Migrate to Cities• Urbanization – the massive movement of people

into cities• Between 1860 and 1900, our countries population

doubled• Immigrants tended to go to cities b/c of costs and

lack of education• Farming technology had also improved • New York…1860 (800k) 1900 (3.5 million)• Chicago…1860 (109k) 1900 (1.6 million)• Cities over 2,500 people --1840 (131 cities) 1900 (1,700 cities)

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Chicago 1820

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Chicago 1854

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Building Up, Not Out

• Skyscrapers begin to appear in cities….WHY?

• NEED MORE ROOM…• 1st in Chicago in 1884 b/c no more

room for anymore buildings

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Urbanization Issues - Housing

Row Houses(dumbbell)

TenementsOvercrowdedDilapidatedDangerous (mold, lead,

poorly constructed)

Lack of clean water/no indoor plumbing

Very little air or light/pollution

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Urbanization - WaterLate 1800s, few had indoor

plumbing & water was collected in pails from faucets on the street and heat it for bathing

Water poor quality b/c of cholera and typhoid fever

Access to safe water (even after the introduction of filtration and chlorination at turn of century) was limited

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Urbanization - SanitationHorse manure piled up on


Sewage flowed through open gutters

Factory smoke filled the air

Garbage was dumped in the streets (no formal trash collection)

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Urbanization - Crime• Political Corruption

• Gangs - nativism, violence

• Theft

• Drunkenness

• No police

Gangsters Hanging out in NY

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Gangs of New York Videos

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A Picture of How Urbanization Occurred…

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Jacob Riis• Newspaper man• Exposure journalism• Exposed the problems

facing the poor in urban society

• “How the Other Half Lives”

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• Bandit's Roost (1888) by Jacob Riis, from How the Other Half Lives. This image is Bandit's Roost at 59½ Mulberry Street, considered the most crime-ridden, dangerous part of New York City.

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Chicago—October 7, 1871

• The midwest was in the middle of an awful drought• O’Leary family had a milk business in Chicago• Mrs. O’Leary and her cow Daisy• Fire begins…and the “windy city” does the rest• 17,450 buildings were destroyed and the entire

business sector was wiped out• Mrs. O’Leary’s house survived…the barn and cow

did not• 300 people died

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A popular rhyme in Chicago

One dark night when we were all in bedMrs. O’Leary lit a lantern in her shed,The cow kicked it over, winked its eye and saidThere’ll be a hot time in the old town tonight.

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Urbanization - Fire• Building materials were flammable• No fire departments• No water• Overcrowding• Fires occurred in every major city (2 major

examples):– Chicago (1871): 24 hours, 300 ppl died,

100,000 homeless, 3 sq mi destroyed, $200 mil in damages, 17,500 buildings destroyed

– San Francisco (1906): 4 days, 1,000 ppl died, 200,000 left homeless, 5 sq mi destroyed, $500 mil in damages, 28,000 buildings destroyed

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First hand account

“The intense heat from the burning buildings, even the flames from them, reached the water, and even stretched out over it, and the flying men, women, and children, rushed into the lake till nothing but their heads appeared above the surface of the waters; but the fiery fiend was not satisfied. The hair was burned off the heads of many, while some never came out of the water alive. Many who stayed on the shore, where the space between the fire and water was a little wider, had the clothes burned from off their backs.”

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Great Chicago Fire 1871

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Chicago fire equipment

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American cities rally to help

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Political MachineOrganized group that controlled the activitiesof a political party in a city and offered services to voters and businesses in exchange for political or financial support.

Ward Boss

Local Precinct WorkersAnd Captains

Party Boss

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William “Boss” Tweed• Led “Tammany Hall,” NY’s

most powerful political machine

• Ran NY for 12 years• Helped the poor – coal in

the winter, turkeys at Christmas

• Stole millions of dollars from taxpayers

• Helped minimally to get votes, & then failed to help where it mattered

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