January 1912, New York City.
To the untrained observer this might be a pleasant domestic scene; to the eye (and lens) of social reformer Lewis Hine, however, it is a diorama of decadence and moral decay, with peril lurking in every detail. The object of his ire here is the use of child labor in tenement home work, specifically the assembly of artificial flowers: "Julin, a 6-year-old child, making pansies for her neighbors on top floor (Gatto), 106 Thompson St. They said she does this every day, 'but not all day.' A growler and dirty beer glasses in the window, unwashed dishes on the stove, clothes everywhere, and flowers likewise." Photo and caption by Lewis Wickes Hine. (NB: Growler = beer pitcher.) | Click image for Comments.