“Newsboys Home Fixed Up”


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From the December 21, 1903 edition of the New York Sun:

Newsboys’ Home Fixed Up.

Changes and Betterments in the Old Duane Street Building.

After being closed for repairs for nearly six months, the Newsboys’ Lodging House, at Duane and New Chambers streets, is again open.
The old dark stairs leading to Duane street have been replaced by a wide, well lighted flight of stone steps leading to New Chambers street. A new doorway and an artistic illuminated sign, presented by one of the managers of Tiffany’s, make the entrance attractive.
The assembly room has been repainted and has a new hardwood floor. New steam-fitting and plumbing have been put throughout the building. The gymnasium has been put in good shape and the house is ready for more boys than ever before.

“Newsboys’ Home to Reopen”


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From the December 18, 1903 edition of the New York Sun:

Newsboys’ Home to Reopen.

The Lodging House Has Been Refitted and the Entrance Moved.

The Newsboys’ Lodging House, at New Chambers and Duane streets, which has been closed since August, is to open again on Saturday night. The building has been improved, the main entrance being now at 14 New Chambers street, instead of on the Duane street side.
The Christmas dinner will be given by William Flies of West Fifty-seventh street, who has given the newsboys a Christmas spread and eaten with them for many years. On account of ill health he will not be able to attend the dinner this year.

“Christmas Appeal, Children’s Aid Society”



From the December 10, 1907 edition of the New York Tribune:


THIRTY DOLLARS will place some homeless child in a carefully selected family home in the country or will enable us at our Farm School to train a homeless street boy for farm life and fit him for an honest living.

ONE HUNDRED DOLLARS will provide nourishing hot meals or furnish shoes and warm clothing for the poor boys in our Newsboys’ Lodging Houses and Temporary Homes. We as for gifts, large or small, to make a merry Christmas for the children of the poor and to maintain the general work of the Society. Checks may be made payable to A. BARTON HEPBURN, Treasurer, 105 East 22nd St., New York.

WM. CHURCH OSBORN, President.                  C. LORING BRACE, Secretary.

“Newsboys Who Wouldn’t Sing”


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From the November 27, 1899 edition of the New York Sun:

Newsboys Who Wouldn’t Sing

Because the Lodging House Would not Let Them in Before Evening.

There was a small insurrection yesterday outside of the Newsboys’ Lodging House in Duane street, caused, as it appears, by fresh paint. Robert Gibson, 15 years old, called at The Sun office last night and gave out this official statement on behalf of the insurgents:
“Every Sunday they open the doors at 1 o’clock in the afternoon and let us in so that we can use the gymnasium and get out of the cold. To-day we were froze out. They didn’t open the door at 1 o’clock but kept us out ll day. The dudes that pay 10 cents a night got in. We only pay five cents. There’s only a few dudes. We got bunk to-night. Every Sunday night they have a meeting and ladies come to hear us sing. To-night we all stayed out and wouldn’t come in when they opened the doors and there was only about six of the dudes at meeting. There were sixty of us who stayed out.”
Supt. Heig said last night that the boys were kept out of the lodging house during the day because the walls of the stairways had been freshly painted and a number of the boys when they left the place yesterday morning had amused themselves by rubbing their hands on the new paint and then making figures with the paint on the windows and doors.
“There were only about twenty of those who revolted,” said Mr. Heig. “The boys will receive all their former privileges as soon as the paint dries.”

“Won Fine New Homes.”


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From the November 25, 1903 edition of the The Sun:

Won Fine New Homes.

How the Penns. R. R. Tunnel Project Helped a Worthy Institution for Boys.

When the Pennsylvania Railroad bought the land for its immense new station it took over among other property the West Side Lodging House and School for Homeless Boys in West Thirty-second street, near Seventh avenue, which the Children’s  Aid Society received in 1885 from John Jacob Astor. The railroad had to have the site of the home, and to get it willingly paid the charitable institution so generous a sum that the society has been able to erect with the proceeds two fine buildings, thus more than doubling the value of Mr. Astor’s original benefaction. The West Side Lodging House, at 225 West Thirty-fifth street, is one of the buildings. The other is the West Side Industrial School, at 419 West Thirty-eighth street.
The story of this notable gain by one of New York’s foremost charities s an incidental result of the carrying out of the Pennsylvania’s great improvement was made public at the annual meeting of the Children’s Aid Society yesterday. Because of the increased facilities afforded by the new buildings and of substantial gifts from trustees, Secretary C. Loring Brace said, the society would ge [sic] able to develop its manual training work greatly.
Nearly 16,000 poor children attended the society’s industrial schools this year. The society is making a special effort to attract truant children. Among other things a newsboys’ industrial school, which Mr. Brace said would be the first in the country, will soon be opened in the downtown Newsboys’ Lodging House.
Mr. Brace said that 4,302 boys and girls had been sheltered in the society’s lodging houses during the year, against 13,717 in 1883. “This enormous falling off in homeless, wandering boys is a striking fact,” said he, “and is due to the effectiveness of the life saving agencies.”
There are still many boys idling about low resorts, he asserted, and to reach these the society is making its homes more attractive.
More children were placed in good homes during the year than ever before, the total being 869. The society also returned 350 runaways to their parents. Since 1853, when the society was founded, it has placed in family homes 23,061 children, obtained places for 25,200 and restored to their parents 5,551 runaways. Treasurer A. B. Hepburn reported the years receipts as $696,057 and expenditures as $695,628. The officers and trustees were reelected.

“Girls Caught Pickpocket”


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From the November 20, 1902 edition of the Richmond Dispatch:

Girls Caught Pickpocket.

Some Lively Sprinting Done After a Purse-Snatcher.

NEW YORK, November 19.—(Special.)—Three girls, Molly Sindel, of No. 149 Forsyth street, Clara Hoffman and Clara Rosenberg, of No. 215 east Tenth street, showed rare sprinting ability in Second avenue to-day when William Coye, aged 19, a lithographer, who, the police say, lives in a newsboy’s lodging house from Molly Sindel’s hand and ran up the avenue.
Coye got  good start, but the girls were soon in close pursuit. In wake of the girls followed a great crowd. Coye was soon overhauled by the girls, and his face was punched, his clothing torn and his body bruised by many well directed kicks from members of the crowd. His mother would scarcely have recognized him when the crowd took him before the sergeant of the east Fifth street station.
Coye had thrown Miss Sindel’s pocketbook into the street, and it and $2 it contained were recovered.

“A Newsboy’s Progress”


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From the November 10, 1901 edition of the New York Tribune:

A Newsboy’s Progress.

Goes From This City to Louisville, Where He Organizes a Newsboys’ Club and Becomes A Stenographer.

“About four years ago,” said Superintendent Heig of the Newsboys’ Lodging House yesterday, “a boy named Herman Felten stopped at the lodging house. He became a regular attendant at our night school and at the Sunday evening meetings. As he had friends in Louisville, Ky., he wished to go there, and we sent him. He has since organized a newsboys’ club there of which he is the head.”

Mr. Heig received a letter from Felten a few days ago, which was as follows:

It is so long since I last wrote you that mayhap you think I have forgotten you and the Brace Memorial Lodging House. But, no; the lessons I learned and the kindnesses that I received are indelible impressions on my mind—effaceable only by the tragedy of death.

I am now no more the humble newsboy, shouting “Extree! All about the terrible murder!” but a plain stenographer. With the money I saved from selling papers I took a course in a business college and graduated, and procured a position as stenographer.

Inclosed [sic] is an extract from one of our papers regarding myself which may interest you and the boys in your charge. The personage of whom I spoke is but a second Charles Loring Brace—a man worthy to be emulated and honored, and, being emulated, makes the doer happier and of service to his fellowmen; and being of service to one’s fellowmen is a type of love that uplifts the soul to the pedestal of a better life.

This letter was written by a boy who only four years ago was selling newspapers in this city, and much less than four years ago was pursuing the same occupation in Louisville. The newspaper clipping mentioned is from one of the Louisville newspapers, and states that at the “Thompson memorial services of the Newsboys’ Home, held at the Elks’ Home last evening, many interesting addresses were made, of which the most novel was by Herman Felten, the crippled newsboy who stands at the corner of Fourth and Jefferson sts.” The paper went on to say that the address was considered remarkable from a boy so young, after which it gave the address in full.

Felten’s speech was a tribute to Judge R . H. Thompson, the one to whom he referred in his letter as a “second Charles Loring Brace.” The judge had been friendly to Felten when he was a poor newsboy and in actual want, and had helped him through his difficulties.

Advice from “Newsies” on the Day After the Election



Elections are trying times; this year’s presidential election was no different. Tensions were high during the campaign season, and continue to be so over very divisive issues under the campaign slogan “Make America great again.”

Change doesn’t always start from the top. Newsies is a reminder of that. Children and young adults, at the bottom of the totem pole, went up against powerful newspapermen, and while they may not have gotten exactly what they wanted, both sides came to a compromise.

In order to make positive changes in this country over the next four years, it is up to us to work together to reach common goals. The time to start is now.  And we have the music and message of Newsies to remind us in the dark times.


From “The World Will Know”:

Everyday we wait,
is a day we lose,
and this ain’t for fun,
and it ain’t for show,
and we’ll fight ’em toe to toe to toe and Joe
your world will feel the fire and finally, finally know!


From “Watch What Happens”:

But all I know is nothing happens if you just give in.
It can’t be any worse than how it’s been.
And it just so happens that we just might win,
so whatever happens! Let’s begin!


And finally, from “Seize the Day”:

Now is the time to seize the day
Stare down the odds and seize the day
Minute by minute that’s how you win it
We will find a way
But let us seize the day
Courage cannot erase our fear
Courage is when we face our fear

“The New Colossus”


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Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.

“Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

—Emma Lazarus, 1883

“‘The Evening World’s’ Guests”


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From The Evening World on October 12,1887:

“The Evening World’s” Guests.

Probably no playhouse walls ever inclosed a more appreciative audience than that which filled the People’s Theatre to overflowing last evening. Every one of the 3,247 newsboys and newsgirls who accepted THE EVENING WORLD’S invitation to witness a special performance of “Harbor Lights” will remember it as a red-letter occasion. They evinced an enthusiasm and a zest of pleasure that the chronic critic has long outlived. And with it was a discrimination worthy of the veteran theatre-goer. No good point of dialogue or scenery was missed by their alert eyes and ears. The tumultuous applause came in where it belonged. The heroine had their active encouragement. The villain was in imminent danger of being mobbed. At the happy denouement their joy was unconfined. THE EVENING WORLD takes pride in its 3,247 newsboy and newsgirl guests.