Killing the Poormaster : A Saga of Poverty, Corruption, and Murder in the Great Depression (Hardcover)

Author: Metz, Holly

Customer Reviews   Write a Review

Be the first to review this item and earn 25 Rakuten Super Points™

Product Overview

On February 25, 1938, in the early days of the welfare system, the reviled poormaster Harry Barck?wielding power over who would receive public aid?died from a paper spike thrust into his heart. Barck was murdered, the prosecution would assert, by an unemployed mason named Joe Scutellaro. In denying Scutellaro money, Barck had suggested the man?s wife prostitute herself on the streets rather than ask the city of Hoboken, New Jersey, for aid. The men scuffled. Scutellaro insisted that Barck fell on his spike; the police claimed he grabbed the spike and stabbed Barck.

News of the poormaster?s death brought national attention to the plight of ten million unemployed living in desperate circumstances. A team led by celebrated attorney Samuel Leibowitz of ?Scottsboro Boys? fame worked to save Scutellaro from the electric chair, arguing that the jobless man?s struggle with the poormaster was a symbol of larger social ills. The trial became an indictment ?of a system which expects a man to live, in this great democracy, under such shameful circumstances.?

We live in a time where the issues examined in Killing the Poormaster?massive unemployment, endemic poverty, and the inadequacy of public assistance?remain vital. With its insight into our social contract, Killing the Poormaster reads like today?s news.


Publisher Chicago Review Pr
Mfg Part# 9781613744185
SKU 230630065
Format Hardcover
ISBN10 1613744188
Release Date 10/1/2012
Product Attributes
eBooks Kobo
$0.05 + $3.99 shipping
$26.95 You save $26.90 (99%)
Rakuten Super Points Earn 1 ($0.01) Rakuten Super Points™
What are Rakuten Super Points™?
Get rewarded when you shop! Earn 1 point per dollar spent. That's like getting cash back on every purchase. Easy to see matured points in checkout. Use points just like cash.
Learn More
Get this item for
(price with shipping)
(redeem points)
Format: Hardcover
Condition: Used-Good
In Stock. Usually Ships in 1 to 2 business days
Please select an option to buy
Add to Cart

Sold By:  Discover Books
What is a Marketplace and Shop Owner?
  • Our marketplace is a platform where approved third-party retailers (Shop Owners) can sell their products
  • Items are sold and shipped by Shop Owners
  • Your credit card and personal information remain secure; meets all PCI Security Standards.
  • Purchases can only be returned to the Shop Owner
  • All purchases receive Rakuten Super Points™
Buy From Other Sellers (1)
  • Take your library with you wherever you go
  • Use the device you want to use… smartphone, desktop and many of today’s most popular eReaders


We love the Kobo eReading service… and we know you will too. We’ve partnered with them to bring you the most flexible, enjoyable eReading experience in the U.S.


You’ll be asked to sign in or create a new account with Kobo. Once you do, you’ll immediately get access to millions of titles and be ready to start eReading. Anytime. Anyplace.

continue to kobo