March 25, 2011

The 100th Anniversary of The Triangle Factory Fire

Today marks the 100th anniversary of a factory fire here in Greenwich Village which killed 146 garment workers.  Though the fire was not intentional, it resonated historically in some of the ways 9/11 does today in how strongly the event affected the history of the 20th century.  It spurred massive changes in workspace regulation and building codes as well as the organization of labor unions across the country.

The remarkable thing to me, as a Village resident, is that the building where this tragedy took place still stands today.  In fact, it is part of NYU's campus and students now learn about biology and chemistry on the 9th floor where so many perished a century ago today. There is a remarkable amount of coverage in the NY TIMES today, but one piece I found most interesting was about the Asch Building and it's current use.

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