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1) Jurgis Rudkus
Jurgis Rudkus is the novel's protagonist. Jurgis is a Lithuanian immigrant who comes to America with his family to pursue wealth. He meets the harsh realities of the Chicago packing plants and loses most of his family and friends to death and physical demise. Jurgis becomes a criminal and an outcast before finding salvation and purpose in the tenets of the Socialist Party.
2) Ona's father dies leaving little or no money, so they decided to move to America.
3) Jurgis is a Lithuanian immigrant who comes to America with his family to pursue wealth.
4) Jurgis's brother, tells them of a friend who made a fortune in Chicago and they decide to go there.They expected to become rich and have an easier life.