Their detractors called pigs “walking sewers.”
July 29, 2017 8:38 PM   Subscribe

New York City's first battle over gentrification involved the 20,000 hogs that freely roamed the streets.
posted by Chrysostom (10 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
Hogs you say?
posted by Foci for Analysis at 8:47 PM on July 29, 2017 [4 favorites]

Backstory podcast has a great segment on this very subject.
posted by perrouno at 3:21 AM on July 30, 2017 [3 favorites]


Hog ownership was the last vestige of economic self-sufficiency—a way of living that protected families from the market economy’s violent swings. It gave them a modicum of control over the value of their work by providing an alternative or supplement to wage labor.

I think I may have a new and very specific platform for Occupy...
posted by Nanukthedog at 4:10 AM on July 30, 2017 [4 favorites]

In William Kennedy's "O' Albany" details the traditional dutch practice of keeping pigs in the streets and then just tossing their garbage on the streets.
posted by mikelieman at 7:14 AM on July 30, 2017 [1 favorite]

When I was a kid the mess halls on post had separate bins for 'edible garbage' that was fed to hogs. Maybe it was left over from wartime frugality. It made so much sense to my six year old self: free pork from food waste. Never seen it anywhere else. I can see why you wouldn't want the hogs running the streets though.
posted by Bee'sWing at 7:19 AM on July 30, 2017 [3 favorites]

A social safety net made of bacon?
posted by BlueHorse at 10:51 AM on July 30, 2017 [4 favorites]

In a major anti-hog court case of the time, the prosecution charged pigs with attacking children, defecating on people, and “compelling” ladies “to view swine copulating in public view.”

The horror!!
posted by languagehat at 11:11 AM on July 30, 2017 [2 favorites]

“compelling” ladies “to view swine copulating in public view.”

I guess they were clutching pearls before swine?
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 8:21 PM on July 30, 2017 [6 favorites]

My main takeaway from this is at that point the streets of New York were so filled with garbage that you could raise hogs on them. New York was a literal sty.
posted by happyroach at 12:22 AM on July 31, 2017 [1 favorite]

Cairo's Christian community used to raise pigs because unlike the Muslim majority, they could. They also were the garbage collectors for the. It's and fed what was edible by pigs to the pigs. Later of course they ate the pigs. Cairo was a fairly clean city.
After the various political upheavals the government ordered all the pigs to be killed. The city is actually less clean now.
posted by Katjusa Roquette at 11:23 AM on July 31, 2017

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