Book Review: Muckraking Essay
The Bedford Series in History and Culture: Muckraking. By Ellen F. Fitzpatrick. (Bedford Books of St. Martins Press, 1994.x, 132 pp. ISBN 0-312-08944-9)
The Editor, Ellen F. Fitzpatrick is currently an associate professor of history at Harvard University.She has published many articles on women’s history and social reform.Lincoln Steffens was one of the leading muckrakers.He wrote many articles exposing municipal corruption.Ida M. Tarbell wrote articles exposing Rockefeller.Ray Stannard Baker was involved in exposing railroad and financial corruption. These three journalists joined together to establish American Magazine.
After three terms as mayor of Minneapolis, “Doc” Ames reformed.Corrupt he was indeed.He took all the honors, and left all the spoils for his followers, or reformed administration.Ames had new plans for the city of Minneapolis.He turned the city over to outlaws, who were directed by the police to profit for the Ames administration.”Doc” Ames chose his brother, Colonel Fred W. Ames as chief of his administration.Colonel Ames had once commanded a Minnesota regiment in the Philippines, where he was proved to be a coward under fire.Mayor Ames chose Norman King, a former gambler, as chief of detectives.King’s job was to invite thieves, pickpocketers, and gamblers to Minneapolis.Irwin A. Gardner was put in charge of collecting from the women of the town.He was made a special policeman because he was a medical student in a doctor’s office.These men were all in charge of the police force, the dismissed one hundred and seven police officers who could not be truste!
d, but they kept the one hundred and eight teen men who could be trusted.John Fichette, also known as “Coffee John,” was appointed captain of police with no duties other than to sell places on the police force.The reformed administration liberated the thieves in the local jail.
Gambling went on openly and disorderly hou…