SUMMARY Filmed on an unidentified street in New York City, probably Fifth Avenue. Rows of men wearing the white uniforms of New York City street sweepers (known as White Wings) march by the camera. Each row has a police escort. The parade of uniformed men continues until several hundred pass. Immediately following the marching men come approximately a hundred horse-drawn two-wheel carts of the kind used for hauling garbage [Frame: 3394]. One four wheeled cart is seen near the end of the film. In 1895, under the reform administration of Mayor William L. Strong, New York City's Department of Street Cleaning was headed by Colonel George Waring. It was he who garbed his workers in the white duck suits (earning them the name "White Wings") seen in the film. He is also recognized as a brilliant sanitary engineer who marshalled the two thousand man force to clean four hundred and fifty miles of streets each day. According to Jacob Riis, "his broom saved more lives in the crowded tenements than a squad of doctors." By 1903, the date of the filming, a new city administration was in power and Waring had been replaced. From a contemporary Edison film company catalog: WHITE WINGS ON REVIEW. A fine picture of the celebrated "White Wings" or street- cleaning department of one district of Greater New York, showing over 350 men in line, and over 100 carts that are used to carry the refuse away to the dumping wharf, marching through the streets of New York. Code word Urachness. Length 225 feet. Class B. $27.00. CREATED/PUBLISHED United States : Thomas A. Edison, Inc., 1903. NOTES Copyright: Thomas A. Edison; 20May1903; H32033. Camera, James Blair Smith. Photographed April 29, 1903. Location: New York, N.Y. SUBJECTS Street cleaners--New York (State)--New York. Parades--New York (State)--New York. Sanitation workers--New York (State)--New York. Refuse and refuse disposal--New York (State)--New York. Horse-drawn vehicles--New York (State)--New York. Actuality--Short. RELATED NAMES Smith, James Blair, camera. Thomas A. Edison, Inc. Paper Print Collection (Library of Congress) DIGITAL ID lcmp002 m2b36702 http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.mbrsmi/lcmp002.m2b36702
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