In October McClure’s Magazine published what many consider the first muckraking article, Lincoln Steffens’ “Tweed Days in St. Louis.” The “muckrakers” . The Shame of the Cities has 49 ratings and 8 reviews. Evan said: I started reading this a few years ago and found it distant and dry and fairly non-speci. The Shame of the Cities is a collection of articles written by Lincoln Stefferns for McClure’s Magazine. The articles were written to expose.

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The reformers there have no ward organizations, no machine at all; their appeal is solely to the intelligence of the hhe and their power rests upon that. According to Steffens, before he left for Minneapolis, McClure told him that his next article would “point out that democracy is at fault [for urban corruption], that one man has to run a city just as one man has to run a business to make it a success.

The Shame of the Cities: Steffens on Urban Blight

In Minneapolis, Steffens discovered a massive system of graft headed by the mayor, Dr. Wetmore and I compiled together, but it was not shown plainly enough. The Autobiography of Lincoln Steffens.

It is idiotic, this devotion to a machine that is used to take our sovereignty from us. What kinds of fraud did the voting machine try to prevent? Although written over years ago it is just as truthful today regarding corruption in the cities.

Steffens discusses Circuit Attorney Folk’s efforts to clean up the city’s corruption. He framed his work as an attempt “to sound for the civic pride of an apparently shameless citizenship,” by making the public face their responsibility in the persistence of municipal corruption.


But in the very first study—St. Books by Lincoln Steffens. In Philadelphia, he noted, “good people there defend corruption and boast of their machine.

And after that came Chicago and New York, both mongrel-bred, but the one a triumph of reform, the other the best example of good government that I had seen. It was true, it was just; the people of St.

Sagamore Press,40, 3. Corruption here isn’t shameful because it leads to bad ends, it’s shameful because it reflects poorly on the morals and manliness of those in corrupt cities.

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Steffens’ next article, published in Maywas “Pittsburg: He “bolts” his party, but we must syame the bribe-giver changes his party, from one election to another, from one county to another, from one city to another, but the honest voter must not.

The book covers St. He wrote that “Soviet Russia was a revolutionary government with an evolutionary plan”, enduring “a temporary condition of evil, which is made tolerable by hope and a plan.

Folk repudiated it; Mr.

Steffens then wrote “Philadelphia: The only really encouraging article is actually the one on Chicago, since as that writing it actually had what seemed to be effective reform going on. I Have Seen the Future: Louis, but they proved also that that pride had been touched. It is considered one of several early major pieces of muckraking journalism, though Steffens later claimed that this work made him “the first muckraker. They lied about themselves.


He has raised my wages. Therefore, you will see the original copyright references, library stamps as most of these works have been housed in our most important libraries around the worldand other notations in the work. Folk, the tireless prosecutor, could follow them all. That process would take a generation or more to complete, for the politicians now really do not know what good government is. Philadelphia certainly is not merely corrupt, but corrupted, and this was made clear.

This work is in the public domain in the United States of America, and possibly other nations.

The Shame of the Cities

Given the reform impulses popular in the early 20th century, many of these magazines featured reform-oriented investigative reporting that became known as “muckraking” so named by President Theodore Roosevelt after the muckrake in Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress who could “look no way but downward, with a muckrake in his hands”. Alfred Hodder, in the literary journal The Bookmandeclared that the book’s “facts are of the utmost interest and importance, or should be, to every man in the United States who has at heart wteffens wish to be a decent citizen.

All we have to do is to establish a steady demand for good government. It would be easy to become jaded after reading this book.