Jacob Riis’s How the Other Half Lives documented the deplorable living conditions in New York City’s slums in the 1880s. It was one of the foundational muckraking texts, exposing New York City’s middle and upper classes to the problems of poverty.


Use the magnifier to take a close look at the article in Scribner’s Magazine and answer the questions in the boxes below.


“How the Other Half Lives: Studies among the Tenements” by Jacob Riis. Scribner’s Magazine, Dec. 1889. Library of Congress


Annotate this Image

Directions: Read the Wilmington Daily Commercial article and use the annotation tool to take notes based on the following questions:

  1. According to the reporter, how does Jacob Riis embody the expression “I am my brother’s keeper”?
  2. How does Riis embrace participation in both civic and home life?

Download the notes to share with your class.

Source: “Lecture by Jacob Riis.” Every Evening, Wilmington Daily Commercial. Wilmington, Del. Feb. 2, 1906. Library of Congress

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