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United States Labor History

Selected Primary Sources

Jacob Riis

"Jacob Riis and Lewis Hine were among the first social reformers to use photography to document the effects of industrialization and urbanization on working-class Americans. Their work brought the need for housing and labor reform to the attention of legislators and the public. Both men worked tirelessly to improve the lives of America's working-class citizens. Learn more about their efforts." --Excerpt from "Documenting how the other half lives"

Jacob Riis

(photo from Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, DC 20540)