The Nation: Ghetto Homesteaders

The original Homestead Act, passed in 1862, offered free Western land to tens of thousands of people bottled up in the East and helped to change the face of America. Last month another Homestead Act was passed in Philadelphia—not so far-reaching as the first, perhaps, but dramatic in its implications. It urges people not to go West to open land but to stay East, as it were, in the troubled heart of the ghetto. The city is selling abandoned houses for $1 apiece to anybody of limited income who is willing to fix up one of them and live in it...

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