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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Where the Money Goes To: 1910

Where the Money Goes To: 1910

May 1910. St Louis, Missouri. "Where the money goes to. Bach branch office usually has a candy counter. 4020 Manchester Street." One in a series of photos by Lewis Hine showing the "frivolous" uses to which newsies put their earnings -- money spent on candy, ice cream, the nickelodeon, etc. View full size.

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I was a paper boy

I had a paper route when I was about the same age as this young man. Stanton's Grocery Store was on my route and I would never pass it without parking my bike out front and going in and buying a Three Musketeers candy bar. It was the largest candy bar you could buy at the time for a nickel but it still wasn't near as large as the the candy in this picture.

I spent 3 hours each day after school and 3 hours on Saturday collecting the papers, rolling the papers, and riding my bike up and down streets throwing the papers. On Sundays I had to be at the paper office at 6 AM.

I deserved a treat and so did this young man. It was not frivolous.


This is Joe Manning, of the Lewis Hine Project. I would like to respond to Shorpy's comment: "One in a series of photos by Lewis Hine showing the 'frivolous' uses to which newsies put their earnings..."

I word-searched all 5,000-plus Hine child labor photos on the Library of Congress site, and "frivolous" does not appear in Hine's captions. He does make occasional references to newsies spending money on gambling (or other unwise choices); and in the photo above, one could infer that Hine is commenting unfavorably about the boy spending his hard-earned change on candy. So what? What child hasn't experienced a mother or grandmother scolding him or her for wasting money on candy? It is well documented that early 20th century newsies, especially in urban areas, were working in an environment that we would never think of subjecting our children to now. So what's the point in trivializing Hine's important work with a cynical comment, especially when it appears to quote Hine as saying "frivolous," when he did not?

Lighten up Mr. Hine.

The kid is wearing a hat advertising "Zeno Gum." If he has to be a walking billboard, at least let him sample the product.

Is that really candy

From the previous pictures of newsies and their penchant for smoking I suspect that object he is buying is an all day cigar.


Because we all know that adults NEVER spend their money on "frivolous" things.

Give Lewis Hine a break

I'm sure Lewis Hine got tired of being told that child labor was noble work to support families, and that it built character - arguments still being made on Shorpy a century later. So Hine took some pictures of wasteful spending - and promptly gets attacked for being against pleasure and freedom!


If instead he had put that nickel into the stock market, it would be worth three cents today.

It's his money!

Did Hine think that newsies couldn't spend a little of their own money for a treat?

Just Guessing

Judging by Mr. Hine's choice of words for this series of photos, I'd say his own childhood was lacking in frivolity. Too bad.

If it doesn't hurt

Shame on that kid for buying himself a candy bar. I once reported to a new outfit when I was in the Army. I entered the Orderly Room (the Company Headquarters), and there was a plaque on the First Sergeant's Desk that read "If it doesn't hurt, you're not doing it right." That, I guess, was also Hine's psyche.

I'll bet

Lewis Hine was a lot of fun at parties.

SHORPY OLD PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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