The Jungle

What was there first impression of packingtown?

Chapter 2

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They are transported to the stockyards, a place with “never a hill and never a hollow, but always the same endless vista of ugly and dirty little wooden buildings.” There are factories with “immense volumes of smoke” pouring from their chimneys and train yards with locomotives and freight cars. The party notices a change in the atmosphere as they enter the city: the dingy color of the landscape, the thickening smoke, and a “strange, pungent odor.” The group cannot quite describe the odor. It is “an elemental odor, raw and, almost rancid, sensual, and strong.” When they exit their streetcar in the part of town known as the Stockyards, or, Packingtown, they hear the sound of ten thousand head of cattle lowing in the distance.