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An examination of poverty and homelessness in Halifax at the turn of the twentieth century, this book challenges the notion that the poor are deviants who are responsible for their own misfortune. Historians have too often accepted this characterization of poverty without question and, in so doing, have allowed for its perpetuation into current discourse. Through an exploration of public records and the stories of real people, David Hood breathes life into Halifax’s sordid past – and reveals the humanity and complexity of the poor. They were not ‘deviants’ in trouble with the law or ‘cheats’ living on government handouts, but were rather people trying to make ends meet under difficult circumstances. This book provokes readers to rethink accepted notions of poverty and homelessness and, in so doing opens the possibility for recognition and empathy.