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The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory is best known as the site of a deadly fire that blazed for 18 minutes in the late afternoon of March 25, 1911. On the ninth floor of the Asch Building, which housed the factory just off Washington Square in New York City, hundreds of young women and girls were trapped by fire. Thirty or more workers jumped to their death on the pavement below, while more than 100 working girls burned on the factory floor. The resulting public outrage prompted the creation of the New York Factory Investigating Commission. This commission launched an era of remedial factory legislation.

Throughout the late 19th and early 20th centuries immigrant girls and women were recruited to work in the garment industry sweatshops. Italian, Jewish, ...

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