Synopses & Reviews
This classic title, which was the inspiration for the story behind the new musical Newsies
, paints a surprising and indelible portrait of the bitter hardships, amazing resourcefulness, and unadulterated joys experienced by immigrant children in American metropolises at the turn of the century.
The turn of the century was a time of explosive growth for American cities, a time of nascent hopes and apparently limitless possibilities. In Children of the City, David Nasaw re-creates this period in our social history from the vantage point of the children who grew up then. Drawing on hundreds of memoirs, autobiographies, oral histories and unpublished—and until now unexamined—primary source materials from cities across the country, he provides us with a warm and eloquent portrait of these children, their families, their daily lives, their fears, and their dreams.
Illustrated with 68 photographs from the period, many never before published, Children of the City offers a vibrant portrait of a time when our cities and our grandparents were young.
About the Author
David Nasaw is the author of five book and is the Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr. Professor of History of American History at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. His biography of Andrew Carnegie was a finalist for the Pulitizer Prize and his biography of William Randolph Hearst, The Chief, won the Bancroft Prize and the J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize. He has served as a historical consultant for several television documentaries. His work has appeared in The New Yorker, The Nation, The New York Times Book Review, The Wall Street Journal, and other periodicals. He resides in New York City.
Table of Contents
1. The City They Called Home
2. At Play in the City
3. Child Labor and Laborers
4. The Littlest Hustlers
5. The Newsies
6. Junkers, Scavengers, and Petty Theives
7. The “Litter Mothers”
8. All That Money Could Buy
9. The Battle for Spending Money
10. The Children and the Child-Savers
11. Working Together
12. Unions and Strikes
13. End of an Era
Appendix: A Note on Sources: The Newsboy Studies