Utterly Disturbing, Century-Old Photos of Meat-Packing Facilities

After you look at these images of meat-packing facilities from early last century, you'll understand why social reformer Upton Sinclair wrote his great 1906 novel The Jungle about workers' horrific experiences in the meat packing industry.

The mince meat department in Armour's great packing house, Chicago, c. 1893

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A Half Mile of Pork, at Armour's Great Packing House in Chicago, around 1894

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Workers

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The old Union Stockyards in Chicago, early 1900s

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Cutting up hogs in Swift & Co.'s Packing House, c. 1905

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Making link sausages with machines that could stuff 10 ft. per second, c. 1905

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Washing and tagging freshly killed lamb, 1906

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Knocking cattle before slaughtering, 1906

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A slaughterhouse in Canada, around 1907

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Cutting up meat in a German packing house

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Packing sliced bacon in glass jars, c. 1909

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As a lamb to the slaughter, photo by George Boston Brayton, c. 1913

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Chicago meatpacking plant workers, 1905

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Pen of hogs at William Davies Company, a photo by William James Topley, 1920s

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A butcher inspects a rack of hams, c. 1928

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Cattle are first led into a narrow alley and stunned by a blow on the head, in a packing plant in Austin, Minnesota, 1941

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Heads of beef cattle, Austin, Minnesota, 1941

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DISCUSSION

I don't understand why any of these are "utterly disturbing" — this is where all the meat that you eat comes from, and has for over a century. And should our modern society one day collapse, on a smaller scale, if you want to eat meat, this is how it will be done.

People need to get over their squeamishness about killing livestock. Learn to hunt and go hunting, you'll get over it, and you'll also learn to appreciate the animal(s) you're eating.