• Social Reformer, Muckraking Riis Laments Work Load To Fellow Editor

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    Muckraking journalist and social reformer JACOB AUGUST RIIS sends a one-page, 6 x 9 1/4, ALS to HAMILTON HOLT, an outspoken advocate for prohibition, immigrant rights and international peace.


    On his personal stationary, New York, March 18, 1891, Riis writes, “It is time, but yet no article will be forthcoming. I can’t. I have a year’s...labor before me if I am to catch up with old friends and I don’t know how to do it unless I knock off newspaper work altogether, which I can’t afford. These religious papers are hounding me, don’t you do it. I will...leave a note to the effect that the religious papers make me do it.


    “Faithfully yours,


    “Jacob Riis”


    RIIS (1849-1914) was a Danish-American social reformer, a muckraking journalist and social documentary photographer. He contributed significantly to the cause of urban reform in the United States at the turn of the twentieth century.  He is known for having used his journalistic and photographic talents to help the impoverished in New York City.  He is considered as one of the fathers of photography due to his early adoption of flash.


    HOLT (1872-1951) was an American editor, author and politician and President of Rollins College.  He served as editor and publisher of the liberal weekly The Independent in New York. Holt was an outspoken advocate for reform, prohibition, immigrant rights and international peace. He was also a founding member of the NAACP.


    Fold, toning. A couple of stray pencil marks from a previous collector. Riis handwriting is challenging to read and we’ve don’t our best to transcribe it accurately.  Still a wonderful piece of late 19th century communication from a muckraking journalist.


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