Lankevich Chapter 7 Slides

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CHAPTER SEVEN
Governing the World’s
Greatest City
SUMMER ONE 2012
BROOKLYN COLLEGE
HISTORY 3480: HISTORY OF NYC
SECTION T1E (0852)
BRENDAN O’MALLEY, INSTRUCTOR
[email protected]
CHAPTER SEVEN
Governing the World’s Greatest City
New York City and Progressivism: The
Career of Theodore Roosevelt
(1858-1919)
• Born a sickly child into a very wealthy old-money New
York family.
• Graduates from Harvard (1880)
• State Assemblyman (1882-1884)
• Mother and young wife dies on the same day (February
14, 1884)
• Becomes a cowboy/rancher in the Badlands of the Dakota
Territory, but loses his $80,000 investment when a bad
winter kills off his cattle.
• Runs for mayor in 1886, but loses a three-way race to
Democrat Abram S. Hewitt (the other candidate was the
reformer Henry George).
• Serves on the U.S. Civil Service Commission, a three-man
commission to reform corruption and patronage in the
federal government (1889-1895).
Presidential portrait by
John Singer Sargent
(1903)
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Governing the World’s Greatest City
Career of Theodore Roosevelt
(1858-1919)
•Appointed superintendent of the NYPD (1895-1896).
Befriends reformer Jacob Riis at this time.
• Serves as Assistant Secretary of the Navy
(1897-1898)
• Becomes a colonel of the “Rough Riders,” a volunteer
regiment that fought in Cuba during the SpanishAmerican War (1898)
• Elected Governor of New York (1899-1900).
• Selected and is elected as Vice President of the United
States (1901)
• McKinley dies on September 14th of gangrene
poisoning inflicted by two bullets from an assassin’s
gun on Sept. 5th and Roosevelt is sworn in as president.
• President (1901-1909)
Presidential portrait by
John Singer Sargent
(1903)
CHAPTER SEVEN
Governing the World’s Greatest City
TEDDY ROOSEVELT AS STRONG’S SUPERINTENDENT OF THE
BOARD OF POLICE COMMISSIONERS (1895-1896)
CHAPTER SEVEN
Governing the World’s Greatest City
NYC POLITICS FROM THE 1890s THROUGH THE DEPRESSION
Reform Cycle Begins: Corruption of Investigations of the 1890s
• 1894-1895: Lexow Committee – State legislature investigation largely
driven by concerns over police corruption in the Tenderloin, with pressure
from the Rev. Charles H. Parkhurst. Theordore Roosevelt becomes
Superintendant of Police during this time.
• 1899-1900: Mazet Committee (1899-1900) – Another state legislature
investigation driven by upstate Republicans that examined into organized
vice and graft in city government. Leads to Croker’s permanent retirement to
his estate in Ireland, Wantage, where he bred race horses.
• Birth of the Fusion Movement: Over the next three decades, elections were
a back and forth between Fusion Reformers taking power followed by
Tammany reasserting itself. Several mayors also used Tammany to get
elected, but then would strike out on an independent path (McClellan and
Gaynor are good examples).
CHAPTER SEVEN
Governing the World’s Greatest City
POLITICS OF THE 1890s AND EARLY 1900s
Mayors
Tammany Bosses
• 1893-1894: Thomas F. Gilroy – Tammany Democrat 1886-1893; 1897-1901: Richard Croker
• 1895-1897: William L. Strong – Fusion
1893-1897: John C. Sheehan
(he himself was a Republican)
• 1898: Consolidation
• 1898-1901: Robert A. Van Wyck – Tammany
Democrat
• 1901-1902: Louis Nixon
• 1902-1903: Seth L. Low – Citizen’s Union/
1902-1924 : Charles Francis Murphy
Republican/Anti-Tammany Democrats
• 1904-1909: George B. McClellan, Jr. – Democrat (elected
with Tammany help, but proved independent)
• 1909-1913: William J. Gaynor – Tammany Democrat
• 1914-1917: John Purroy Mitchel – Fusion
• 1918-1925: John Francis Hylan – Tammany
1924-1929: George W. Olvany
Democrat
• 1926 – 1932: James “Jimmy” J. Walker – Tammany 1929-1934: John F. Curry
Democrat, also known as “Beau James” or the
“night mayor”
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Governing the World’s Greatest City
Mayor Robert Van Wyck (1898-1901)
• First mayor of Consolidated Greater New York
• Hand-picked by Richard Croker of Tammany
since it was believed Van Wyck would not
interfere.
• Oversaw the construction of the first subway line,
the IRT, which would open in 1904.
• Political career was ruined by the revelations of
the Mazet Committee, which showed that Van
Wyck, Croker, and other Tammany officials were
getting payoffs from the American Ice Company
to preserve its monopoly on ice in Manhattan
(it only would sell $0.60 blocks).
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Governing the World’s Greatest City
Mayor Seth Low (1902-1903)
• Born into a wealthy Brooklyn merchant family.
• Served as Mayor of Brooklyn from 1881 to 1885.
• Served as president of Columbia University from 1890 to
1901. Oversaw the move of the campus from midtown to
Morningside Heights in 1897.
• Ran for mayor of NYC in 1897 but loses to Van Wyck
because of divisions within anti-Tammany forces.
• After the revelations of the Mazet Committee investigations,
Tammany is temporarily discredited.
• Low becomes the first “fusion” candidate elected as mayor of
NYC, taking office in 1902.
• Institutes civil service reform, where jobs are assigned by
merit rather than by political connections.
• He reduced police graft and improved the education system.
• Cold and intellectual, he was not a good campaigner. He also
chose to enforce a ban on Sunday liquor sales, which proved
an important issue in his defeat by Democrat George
B. McClellan, Jr. in the 1903 campaign.
CHAPTER SEVEN
Governing the World’s Greatest City
Mayor George B. McClellan, Jr. (1904-1909)
• Son of famed Civil War general, George B. McClellan,
who had ran against Lincoln for president in 1864.
• Had become a Tammany president of the Board of
Aldermen in 1892 at age 27.
• Elected to the U.S. House in 1895.
• Defeats Mayor Low in the 1903 election with over
60,000 votes.
• Serves two terms (four-year terms were restored for
his second term) and grows increasingly independent
from Tammany.
• Oversees the opening of the IRT subway in 1904 (he
insisted on driving the ceremonial first train himself).
• Immigration reaches it peak in 1907 with 1.1 million
entering through Ellis Island.
• Tries to regulate the new “nickelodeon” industry,
canceling their licenses in 1908.
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Governing the World’s Greatest City
Charles Francis Murphy (1858-1924)
• Son of Irish immigrants, Murphy saved up
enough money to purchase his own saloon,
eventually acquiring several. He became the
Tammany political leader of the Gas House
District on the East Side (now Stuyvesant Town/
Peter Cooper Village).
• Becomes Tammany Grand Sachem in 1902 and is
key in getting McClellan elected. He remains as
sachem until 1924 and was perhaps the most
powerful Tammany leader ever.
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Governing the World’s Greatest City
1904 Map and Plan of the IRT
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Governing the World’s Greatest City
1905 Herald Cartoon Critical of the IRT
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Governing the World’s Greatest City
William Randolph Hearst (1863-1951)
• Son of a wealthy California mining engineer. He enters
publishing by buying the San Francisco Examiner in
1887.
• Enters the New York scene by buying the failing
newspaper, the New York Journal in 1895 and
immediately begins a circulation war with Pulitzer's
New York World.
• Helps to engineer American entry into the SpanishAmerican War in 1898 by inflaming popular sentiments
against Spain. Viewed as one of the creators of “yellow
journalism.”
• Hearst served in the U.S. House from 1903 to 1907.
• Runs against McClellan in 1905 favoring the municipal
ownership of utilities and transit companies, which his
opponents deem socialism.
• Runs against Judge Gaynor in 1909 for mayor and is
once again defeated by Tammany.
• His life was the inspiration for Orson Welles’s brilliant
film, Citizen Kane (1941).
CHAPTER SEVEN
Governing the World’s Greatest City
“The Yellow Kid”
• Popular feature of Pulitzer’s New York
World from 1895 to 1896.
• The Yellow Kid’s creator, Richard F.
Outcault, was hired away by Hearst in
1897.
• The Yellow Kid had his head shaved,
which was a common sight among New
York City street kids as a way to
prevent lice.
• The Yellow Kid has been linked to the
term “yellow journalism.”
CHAPTER SEVEN
Governing the World’s Greatest City
Mayor William J. Gaynor (1910-1913)
• Nearly became a Christian Brothers monk while still a
teenager, but drops out of the order while still a novice.
• Joined his father’s law firm instead.
• Served as a respected New York Supreme Court Justice
from 1895 to 1909.
• Picked by Tammany’s Charles Murphy to run in 1909 for
his reputation as incorruptibly honest reformer.
• Easily beats fusion candidate William Randolph Hearst
and Republican Otto Bannard.
• Walked to his inauguration from his home in Park Slope to
City Hall.
• Proved a real reformer, not a Tammany puppet, pruning
the city payroll of excess Tammany “no shows” and
initiated legislative efforts that became a new city charter in
1911.
• Survives an attempted assassination on August 9, 1910,
but with the bullet lodged in his pharynx, he becomes
depressed and irascible, losing his effectiveness.
CHAPTER SEVEN
Governing the World’s Greatest City
Triangle Shirtwaist Fire – March 25, 1911
• Fire breaks out at the ten-story Asch Building at 22
Washington Place right before quitting time in the top three
floors, which house a women’s garment “sweatshop.”
• The elevator operator is incapacitated and dies quickly.
• The fire department responded quickly, but its ladders
only reached the sixth floor.
• People either are burned to death, while many choose to
jump to their death.
• Overall, 146 workers are killed, including 125 young
female workers, mostly Jewish and Italian immigrants.
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Governing the World’s Greatest City
Shirtwaist Style
CHAPTER SEVEN
Governing the World’s Greatest City
Gaynor after being shot, August 9, 1910, by a disgruntled
dockworker, James Gallagher.
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Governing the World’s Greatest City
John Purroy Mitchel (1914-1917) “The Boy Mayor”
• Young lawyer comes to prominence as a reform-minded
•Democratic lawyer and aldermen in the early 1900s.
• Becomes President of the Board of Aldermen in 1909.
• Leads a corruption investigation of the corrupt borough
presidents of the Bronx and Manhattan and gets them
dismissed, which leads to his city-wide prominence.
• Enters the 1913 race as a “Fusion” candidate, backed by
Republicans, Jewish and Protestant reformers, and antiTammany Democrats. He wins at 34 years of age.
• Reformed police department considerably, but ran into
political trouble when he vetoed new school construction and
threatened to take funding away from Catholic schools (even
though he himself was a devout Catholic).
• Lost his 1917 reelection bid to Tammany “dark horse” John
Francis Hylan in an election that featured a non-Fusion
Republican and Socialist candidate, Morris Hilquit, who
Mitchel barely beat for second place.
• Mitchel joined the army air and died in a training accident in
1918.
CHAPTER SEVEN
Governing the World’s Greatest City
John Francis Hylan (1918-1925)
• Served as a locomotive engineer for the Brooklyn Union
Elevated Railway and was a longtime resident of Bushwick.
• Studied law, became an established attorney and then a Kings
County judge.
• Chosen by Tammany as a “dark horse” candidate in the 1917
mayoral election. Defeats fusion incumbent John Purroy Mitchel
with the backing of Tammany and the Hearst papers; the latter
shared his desire for municipal ownership of utilities.
• Progressive reformers aghast at his election; the New York
Times calls him a “man of marvelous mental density.”
• Proved to be a relatively capable mayor who was honest and
institute many reforms that made the city better run: helps create
the Port Authority of New York and begins initiates the move
toward the creation of the city-owned subway line, the IND, and
creates a city-owned radio station, WNYC.
• Easily wins reelection, but the Tammany power vacuum after
the death of Murphy in 1924 left it in a state of confusion and
opened the door for the charismatic Walker.
CHAPTER SEVEN
Governing the World’s Greatest City
James Walker, “The Night Mayor”
“Beau James” served as mayor from 1926 to 1932 and is widely remembered
for a variety of scandals, including leaving his wife, Janet, for the showgirl
Betty Compton. A 1932 corruption investigation and pressure from Governor
Franklin Roosevelt forced him to resign in 1932 and flee to Europe, where he
married Compton.
CHAPTER SEVEN
Governing the World’s Greatest City
Singer Building – 1908
• 47 stories
• Site that is now
1 Liberty Plaza
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Governing the World’s Greatest City
Pennsylvania Station – 1910
• McKim, Mead & White design
• Crown of the trans-Hudson tunnel
• Eviscerates the Tenderloin
• Modeled on the Baths of Caracalla
• Demolition begins in October 1963.
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Governing the World’s Greatest City
Grand Central Terminal– 1913
• The third train station to exist on the site.
• Terminal for the New York Central and Hudson River Railroad, the New York
and Harlem Railroad, and the New York and New Haven Railroad.
• Building happened simultaneously with electrification of train lines.
CHAPTER SEVEN
Governing the World’s Greatest City
Woolworth Building – 1913
• 57 stories
• 233 Broadway
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Governing the World’s Greatest City
Chrysler Building – 1930
• 77 stories
• 405 Lexington Avenue
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Governing the World’s Greatest City
Empire State Building – 1931
• 102 stories
• 350 Fifth Avenue
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