The Great Kosher Meat War of 1902: Immi­grant House­wives and the Riots that Shook New York City

  • From the Publisher
September 1, 2019
In response to a pre­cip­i­tous rise in the price of kosher meat and the per­cep­tion they were being gouged, thou­sands of immi­grant Jew­ish women took to the streets of Manhattan’s Low­er East Side in 1902, intend­ing to shut down every kosher butch­er shop in New York City’s heav­i­ly Jew­ish quar­ter until prices came down. The book tells the twin sto­ries of most­ly une­d­u­cat­ed but deeply obser­vant female immi­grants who dis­cov­er their col­lec­tive pow­er as con­sumers and of the Beef Trust, the Mid­west­ern car­tel that con­spired to keep meat prices high despite efforts by the U.S. gov­ern­ment to cur­tail its nefar­i­ous prac­tices. With few resources and lit­tle expe­ri­ence but steely deter­mi­na­tion, this group of women orga­nized them­selves into a potent fight­ing force and in their first for­ay into the polit­i­cal are­na in their adopt­ed coun­try, suc­cess­ful­ly chal­lenged pow­er­ful, vest­ed cor­po­rate inter­ests and set a pat­tern for future gen­er­a­tions to follow.

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