Try As They Might, The Dead Seldom Rise

It was the prototypical steel mill, a 400-acre, 3,000-employee testament to American heavy industry. But U.S. Steel Corp. shut down the Homestead Works in 1986. Repeated efforts since to attract new employers to Homestead, Pa., including Sony, Mercedes-Benz, and United Parcel Service, have failed. Today, half of Homestead's households earn no money. Its middle class has fled, and the struggling town of 6,000 along the Monongahela River is overrun with poverty and drug gangs.

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