03.25.11

Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire Memorialized Today

Posted in Wrongful Death at 2:46 pm by kevin

On March 25 every year the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire is memorialized in New York City. People leave flowers around the Brown Building at 29 Washington Place and write the names of the deceased on the sidewalk regarding the event that happen in 1911.

Known as the deadliest industrial disaster of modern times, the fire killed 146 workers who were trapped by their bosses on 8th, 9th and 10th floors of the building. The managers had locked the garment workers inside the floors, forcing mostly women immigrants to work long hours for low pay.

Many people regard this event the beginning of the organized labor movement inside the U. S. Two of the company owners who survived the fire by going on top of the building to be later rescued while their employees burned below were the company owners Isaac Harris and Max Blanck.

Both men were acquitted of criminal charges for the offense. They were, however, found guilty in a 1913 wrongful death lawsuit and were forced to pay $75 per deceased victim as compensation. The insurance company paid Harris and Blanck around $400 per victim for the fire, so each profited from the loss of their employees.

If you think this has gone away then you should check out the list of companies today taking out dead peasant life insurance on their own employees.