The remaking of Pittsburgh: class and culture in an by Francis G. Couvares

By Francis G. Couvares

What forces reworked a group within which commercial staff and different electorate exercised a true degree of strength over their lives right into a city whose population have been totally depending on colossal metal? How did a urban that fervidly embraced the hard work fight of 1877 develop into town which so fiercely repudiated the exertions fight of 1919?

The Remaking of Pittsburgh is the background of this change. The cultural dimensions of industrialization come to lifestyles as Couvares calls upon hard work background, city background, and the historical past of pop culture to depict the death of the “craftsman's empire” and the delivery of a worldly bourgeois society. The publication explores the impression of immigration at the shaping of contemporary Pittsburgh and the emergence of mass tradition in the neighborhood. in the course of those approaches of transformation, the large metal organisations have been consistently reshaping the lifetime of the town.

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The character of that ideal was best revealed in practice. For example, one puddler33 described the way he and his fellow craftsmen pulled together in hard times: Those who had jobs divided their time with their needy comrades. A man with hungry children would be given a furnace for a few days to earn enough to ward off starvation. This description suggests that the ethic of mutualism extended beyond brothers in the craft. Indeed, a species of paternalism marked relations between craftsmen and their helpers.

They fought to survive in hard times and pushed for more formal controls over production in good times. Indeed, the history of unionization in Pittsburgh and other iron centers is a chronicle of worker resistance to cyclical, as well as seasonal, insecurity. Although they sought higher wages and other "bread and butter" rewards, craftsmen created their sliding scales and the unions that defended them principally to stabilize employment and to limit the extent to which they had to bear the hardships of slumping markets.

A workman then approaches with a long iron rod, heated to a red heat, Page 13 and presses it from one end of the cylinder to the other, lets fall a drop of water on the iron, and the cylinder cracks in a perfectly straight line from end to end. The cylinder is now passed on to the flattening oven, where by light pressure and gradual heat, it becomes a sheet of glass. At the end of forty-eight hours it is taken to the cutting-room. The cutter lays the broad sheet of glass upon his table and cuts it into the number of pieces required.

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