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July 17, 2019 - Politico

The Racist History of Tipping

The Racist History of Tipping
Photo by: Kate TownsendFile Photo / © Photabulous!

You might not think of tipping as a legacy of slavery, but it has a far more racialized history than most Americans realize. Tipping originated in feudal Europe and was imported back to the United States by American travelers eager to seem sophisticated. The practice spread throughout the country after the Civil War as U.S. employers, largely in the hospitality sector, looked for ways to avoid paying formerly enslaved workers.

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