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The day book. (Chicago, Ill.) 1911-1917, November 06, 1915, GARMENT WORKERS' SPECIAL EDITION, Image 5

Image and text provided by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL

Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045487/1915-11-06/ed-1/seq-5/

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GOD-CREATED TO BE MOTHERS OF THE RACE
MAN STARVED IN BODY, MIND AND SOUL
BY JANE WHITAKER
God of Creation made me a woman,
to be mother of'the race,
To bear your sons with valor strong;
to rear your daughters chaste;
He gave to me your destiny, but you
what have you done?
Starved me, body, mind and soul, be
fore my task begun!
Carfare if she has it yes, but she
often walks in the morning and al
ways at night, and for her lunch she
eats dry bread and washes it down
with water. At night she tmys what
she can afford, a herring, some bread,
more of the tea, or if she is terribly
hungry she gets something to eat in,
a restaurant, and, since she is just 19,
her hunger hasn't learned to adjust
itself very well to her finances.
She looked at me curiously that I
should ask so many questions. She
If she is
If it is a
How do they live, these girls to
whom the clothing manufacturers,
the merchant princes of their line,
have been naviner such low waees I has not vet heen sick.
that in rebellion, engendered by star- ' well, there is the hospital.
vation, they went out on strike weeks , toothache, it must ache, for having
ago and have continued because they teeth extracted is a luxury and to
had so little to lose even If they do i have them filled is more than a lux
not work? ury. For a year and a half she has
I wanted to find out, but I did not lived like this, but she is philosophical
want picked girls to tell me and so I about it
sat down in tne midst of a number or , "You speak about being sick: a
girls assembled in a room in Hod Car
riers' hall and I asked them.
They answered simply, unemo-
girl a few months older addressed me.
"I was sick. It was nervous sicsness
and I was two weeks in the Michael
tionally, except sometimes when their,t B,eese hospital, where they take me
eyes held just a wonder that I should
ask such a silly question as whether
they went to a theater or any place
of amusement, or whether they had
Sunday clothes, and then they shrug
ged, smiled, gave me a quick flash of
inquiry and answered "No."
"I make good money," said the one
I first addressed. "I make $8 in the
busy season and $6 in the slack sea
son. But that girl over there, she is
here alone, and she doesn't make so
much. You will have to get an inter
preter for her. She is Polish."
Someone interpreted. When she
had work in the busy season she
made as much as $6 a week, but in
the slack season she got $3 a week.
How does she live? Oh, it is simple.
She pays $4 a month for a room, just
a little room, you know, but it is large
enough for her to heat some water
in the morning to make her a cup of
tea to drink, without milk or sugar,
for nothing, and then they send me
to a home to get my strength and the
doctor tells me I must eat eggs and
drink milk."
She laughs. It isn't a bitter laugh
it is amused. "When I get well I
go back to work where I had been
getting $6 a week and I told the boss
that the doctor said I must now have
good food. Do you know what he
answered to me? When I had work
ed the week he told me I wasn't doing
as much as I had before I was sick,
so he cut my wages to $4 a week.
"I live like she does. I pay $4 a
month for my room and I drink tea
without milk and two rolls for my
breakfast The last milk I had was
in the home. Milk costs too much.
At my lunch I eat what the doctor,
said I must not sometimes a piece ,
of smoked fish and bread washed
down with water but those eggs and ,
milk that is funny on $4 a week.
with the rolls she bufs at the bakery. Her voice became a little bit jrou j

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