Women's place in industry in 10 southern states


Material Information

Women's place in industry in 10 southern states
Physical Description:
v, 14 p. : ; 22 cm.
Anderson, Mary, 1872-1964
United States -- Women's Bureau
U.S. Govt. Print. Off.
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Subjects / Keywords:
Women -- Employment -- Southern States   ( lcsh )
Labor laws and legislation -- Southern States   ( lcsh )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )


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Also issued online.
Statement of Responsibility:
by Mary Anderson ...
General Note:
At head of title: U.S. Department of labor. W.N. Doak, secretary. Women's bureau. Mary Anderson, director.
General Note:
Address delivered before the National women's trade union league, Greensboro, N.C., March 7, 1931.
General Note:
"Publications of the Women's bureau": p. 13-14.

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University of Florida
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W. N. DOAK, Secretary






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Letter of transmittal ..---..----------------------------------.....................................
Industrial develop ent_ ---- .---------- ---- ----- --.- -
Southern women early makers of textile products_ ---------------
Early manufacturing in the South.----------------------------
Manufacturing vies with agriculture ----------------.-----------
Occupational distribution ...........---..---------------.---------.............
As recorded in census of 1850....--------------. .. -....
Growth of cotton mills, 1860 to 1885 ---------------------------
Men and women employed in 1870 and 1920- ----------------..-.
Occupations of women in 1890 and 1920 ..... ....---------.......
Agriculture---------------------- ------- ----------------
Domestic and personal service------------------------------
All manufacturing industries--------------------------------
Increase in certain manufacturing industries, 1880 to 1920---_-----_
SWomen in manufacturing, 1920_ ---------------------------_..--
W ages ----------------------------------------------------------
'Labor legislation -------- -- ----------------------------- ----- ---
. Factory inspection ---------------------------------- --
Hours of work ----------------------------------------------_
Night work- -----------_.- --------------------------.-
Other labor legislation ----------------------------------------


TABLE I. Number of gainfully-occupied persons and per cent they

formed of total population 10 years of age and over, 1870
and 1920, by sex and State-----------------------------
II. Number of gainfully-occupied women and proportion of these
in certain occupational groups, 1890 and 1920, by State----
III. Number of women in manufacturing and proportion of these
in chief industries, 1920, by State-----------------------
IV. Number of women in manufacturing and proportion of these in
textile, tobacco, and certain clothing industries, 1880 and
1920, by State----------------------------------....................
V. Legal limitation of working hours for women, by State -------


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Washington, March 23, 1931.
Sm: I have the honor to submit herewith an address on the place
of women in industry in 10 Southern States, delivered by me before
the, National Women's Trade Union League, in session at Greensboro,
N. C., on March 7 of this year. It traces the occupational position
of women in the 10 States up to 1920, and shows something of the
economic background of southern life.
Respectfully submitted.
Hon. W. N. DOAK,
Secretary of Labor.





To one who has witnessed the characteristic development of a
ir.ambr eof growing industrial communities and has followed the
.Rqgres of the workers in their efforts toward better working condi-
t.qi: t reasonable, hours, and fair pay, the development now taking
j#l..in many parts of the South is seen to have elements in common
4th4.' typical process that comes with industry, whether it be in
ri'anWl,. in New England, in the South, or elsewhere.
.4,Th .industrial awakening of a community brings with it the in-
creased establishment of mills and factories, the growth of machinery,
S .appeal to prosperity, and the inducements to capital to locate.
9s is"s the growth that now grips the South, with its broad fields,
i gyreatiresources, its capital, its fine manhood, and womanhood; yet
uPpypry such.development are found certain characteristics that are
m, idividlual and that apply particularly to the locality. Among
t". e)c characteristics two appear outstanding in the South: First,
te.. ,years of preoccupation with two great crops-cotton and to-
jCo--followed by a manufacturing system that concentrated largely
q9 keottan and was not greatly diversified; and second, the unique
lgro~und formed by the whole economic history of the area, a
q4ground, difficult to understand without actual. first-hand knowl-
edge of its broad plantations, its thousands of small landowners and
Wi epanpt farmers. From such a background, in which cotton and
ti po 'ere the dominant crops, ini which the population was hetero-
qxeous, in which the natural individualism of an agricultural area
: A ^ enhancedd by the particular aloofness of plantation ownership,
.il.,hihich it had been the custom for plantation owners to assume
s gpsnal. responsibility. for their employees, has grown the southern
u14,village, with its company houses and mill-welfare work and its
i a.Nq: .f .diversified industrial opportunity.
Southern women early makers of textile products.
4' ..Modern industrialism of the type associated. with large-scale
a itler.prise is developing somewhat later in the South than in certain
itb 6er, parts of the country, and it is significant to note that this
Growth shows great differences. in various .Southern States. How-
: er, after the War of the Revolution and in the early days of the
: ninehteenth century, the South became well advanced in the growth of
": ptall neighborhood shops, that appeared in all parts of the
I:" fQugtry during that period. ..
Ihere, as in other parts of the. world, women took up their tradi-
gnal work, the mautifacture of clothing materials and clothing

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itself-the early textile industry. Sometimes a plantation having
water power would undertake the initial processes of manufacture
and send the weaving to be done in the simple farm homes that rep-
resented the great bulk of the white people, many of whom were
Scotch-Irish, German, Moravian, Huguenot, or Swiss settlers who
had learned the art of weaving in the old country. Practically every
farmhouse had its spinning wheel and one or more looms on which
the women spun yarn and wove cloth for the family wardrobe, and
their work went in great measure-how great we can not tell-to
make up the records of southern production along these lines.
Early manufacturing in the South.
The application of machinery to the manufacture of textile prod-
ucts began very early in the South. Before Slater erected the first
Arkwright mill in Rhode Island, power and automatic machinery
were applied to cotton spinning in South Carolina. In 1790, a small
band of English weavers and spinners established in the tidewater
region of the State an 84-spindle mill for the manufacture of fine
cloths. Before 1800, spinning jennies and water-driven spinning-
frames were to be found in two South Carolina towns, and carding
and spinning machinery was in use in eastern Tennessee. Early in
the century, three Rhode Island manufacturers erected in South
Carolina a mill of 700 spindles-the first to be built in the Piedmont
region-hauling their machinery 250 miles over rough roads into the
In 1810, the value of textiles produced was greater in North Caro-
lina than in Massachusetts, and the census for that year records more
homespun cotton manufactured in Virginia, South Carolina, and
Georgia than in the other 13 States and Territories combined, also
more flax spun in Virginia than in any other State. We can not
ascertain the full degree in which women contributed to this, but it is
safe to say that the part they played was a large one.
Besides textile products and clothing of various kinds, furniture
was made by local cabinetmakers, much of it good in line and finish,
and farm wagons and fine carriages also were built in the South. By
1810 or 1820 there were thousands of small shops throughout the
Southern States. To be sure, they did work that was quite local in
character and much of the product was consumed at home or in the
neighborhood, but the same could be said of other parts of the coun-
try. At that time there was every prospect that the South would
become a diversified manufacturing section.
Manufacturing vies with agriculture.
Throughout the early years of the century, up to 1840, the rising
manufactures vied with agriculture for development. But the induis-
trial revolution in England, demanding large quantities of cotton for
the use of its machines, and the invention of the gin, together with
the then existing labor conditions, enabling the southern planter to
prepare cotton quickly for export, made the receipt of profits m6re
certain and more rapid from the growth of this commodity than
from its manufacture into a finished product.
A very large factor in the promotion of agriculture was the favor-
able climate and the fertile soil found throughout large areas in the


Southern States. The. thousands of small farmers who owned some
lpn,, but did their own work found cotton or tobacco the most prof-
.f ..crop, and p l se aspired to plantation ownership, which was also
heih.bition of men engaged in business, many of whom already were
plantation proprietors. The development of a 1-crop or a 2-crop
gip lture triumphed over that of manufacturing, and the ideal of
jlaan 4ai.n life considerably retarded urban growth.
..6r.h -omiit -at which manufacturing seems first to have lagged was
eep 1840 .and 1850, according to.census figures of number of per-
1.Ps ei.pployed in establishments whose, product amounted to over
A99 in the year. In every State there was a considerable increase
S .in' such manufacturing employment from 1820 to 1840, but in the
.AlQ years the numbers, so employed showed a notable decline in
h W.e 10 Southern States under consideration; that is, the group
M. unded by Mason and Dixon's line and the Ohio and Mississippi
.qrs.qmitting only West Virginia. Only in Georgia, Kentucky,
iWa. land of this southern group was the increase in persons
ealoypd in ,manufacturing continuous to 1850. This decline after
4 0 was not confined to the South but occurred in 8 of the 19 other
S ae..in.whipch comparison could be made.
1:. the.free and slave population with occupations reported in
Sgyv r 16 per .cent in the entire United States were in manufac-
:inmg,b:ut in four of the Southern States-South Carolina, Georgia,
i lma, and Mississippi-fewer than 5 per cent were so employed,
Sa donly in Maryland, Virginia, and Kentucky was the per cent as

As ibcotded in census of 1850.
By 1850 women came definitely into the recognized occupational
fg' es tef the' Nation, -for a record is obtainable of the "hands em-
pie ed :irr that year in "Manufactures. mining, and the mechanic
s.' .^ In the country as a whole (there were 31 States at that time)
w, en formed nearly one-fourth of the "hands employed," but only
i : Georgia and Maryland among the Southern States did they ap-
0 6 fxiifd e the proportion found in these industries nationally. In
*l 1in ma Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia,
er i more than half the women in manufactures, mining, and the
: if Rhii arts were in cotton manufactures, women formed over one-
".1,15h`fh ',t:he totdl number of ""hands," but in the remaining 3 States
'.&* 'consideration-Kentucky, Mississippi, and Tennessee-they
.. 6tpithited' 8 per cent or fewer of the total.
GI .r thof cotton mills, 1860 to 1885.
S. aiI 8601 there were about 160 cotton mills in the South. .Ten years
I k.r: r.inany of -these had been 'destroyed in the war or had deteriorated
beyond' repair by being run to capacity to: furnish -supplies. .In
0E:. -usually considered as the date of the beginning -of the modern
indistrial development' in the South, -there were the same number
'i Qmills.as-in 1860, but about twice as many spindles, and the number
J:. spindles again"wasdoubled between 1880 and 1885.
50344 0-31-2

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Men and women employed in 1870 and 1920.1
Figures from the decennial censuses of 1870 to 1920, as far as these
are comparable, have been considered for the group of 10 Southern
States in question-from Maryland and Kentucky on the north to
Mississippi and Tennessee on the west.
In 1870 in these 10 States together a larger proportion of' the
women 10 years of age and over were gainfully employed than was
the case in the United States as a whole. No doubt this was due
largely to the employment of negro women in the South, but it is
not possible to gauge the full extent of this, since the census does
not separate figures by race as far back as 1870 in such a way that
occupations in all States can be compared.
By 1920 the increase over 1870 in proportion of women employed
had been somewhat greater in the whole country than in these '10
Southern States together, and in both cases something over 2 in 10
of the women 10 years of age or more were reported as gainfully
occupied. In all the southern group but Kentucky, Tennessee, and
Virginia the proportion was somewhat greater than in the country
as a whole. '
In 1920 from 7 to 8 of every 10 men were gainfully employed,
both in the United States and in the 10 Southern States together.
In the United States the increase over 1870 in proportion employed
had been more than twice as great for women as for men, and in the
10 Southern States the proportion of men employed had declined
slightly. .
Separate consideration of the States shows the proportion of em-
ployed women to have increased from 1870 to 1920 in every State but
Mississippi, the advance being greatest in Maryland, Florida, North
Carolina, and Tennessee. The proportion of men employed had
declined in six States; it had increased slightly in Florida, Mary-
land, South Carolina, and Tennessee.
The census figures on occupational distribution in 1930 are not yet
available, and probably it will be several months before they can be
put into form for adequate comparison with earlier figures. -
Occupations of women in 1890 and 1920.
Three great occupational groups-agriculture, manufacturing, and
domestic and personal service-engaged about four in every five of
the gainfully-employed women in the group of 10 Southern Staites
in 1920. In the country as a whole only three in every five were, i
these pursuits, the largest remaining groups being in the professions
and in clerical service. That individual differences exist in the States
of the South is strikingly illustrated by the occupational distribution.
Agriculture.-In 1920, in Alabama, South Carolina, and Missis-
sippi from 58 to 68 per cent of the women were agricultural wdri'1wes;
although in the 10 States together less than 39 per cent 'and i.n
the United States as a whole less than 13 per cent were so employed
The 30 years from 1890 to 1920 had reduced the proportion of
women in agriculture in the case of the United States as a whole
the southern area under consideration, and each Southern zState
1 All occupation figures are based on the census classification Females 10 years qO
age and over."


ith : the exception of 'Georgia .and Kentucky, which showed very
'slight increases.
kh!j.omestic, and ,erson-dl sdrvioe.-Both in the United States and in
.tteaSdath, domestic.and personal service engaged over one in four of
Ih'eswomen gainfully emplobred in 1920. While the proportion was
iCdEisslightly higher in the.'10 Southern States than in the United
States .in 5 of them it rose well above the proportion for the whole
country, ranging from. about 30 per cent in Georgia to more than
46 per. cent in Florida.
,iJi: every case but that of Florida, the proportion in domestic and
-persidnala service had declined from 1890 to 1920. This decrease,
*w**ch in most cases was spectacular, was greater in the United States
,aIstnwhole than inthe 10 Southern States together.
,f.l Aleanufactuiring indust'ries.--In 1920, in the 10 Southern States
hutit1f/% in every .10 employed women were in manufacturing, while
fiithbbicountry as. a. whole about.2l in 10 were so employed. Here
again rather extreme variations among the Southern States are
-.naikdable.. Only. in Maryland and North Carolina did the propor-
-tions :of womeri engaged in manufacturing run as high as in the
ifihiaed :States, while in: 5 of the States the proportions of women so
employed were. smaller than that for the 10 States together. As
a0mpared with 1890, the proportion of women in manufacturing had
lasen in all but 1 of the 10 Southern States, though it had declined
in the United States as a whole.
aasc. in. certain manufacturing industries, 1880 to 1920.
mgise 1r n woman employment in certain manufacturing in-
esmin i "thp South, as compared, with that in the United States
So e, ias been marked' The proportion in textile mills of all
J n.d mLanufacturing in the United States in 1920 showed
declinee from the 1880 figure, and the 'proportions in tobacco
-i i clthihipg industries showed increases of only about three
i i 5"r .);oi t e : o ern
Sthe 10 Southern States, the proportion in textile mills had
inthe 40-yeiar period, but" it had more than doubled in
i 9arolina anid Tennessee apnd,had largely increased in the other
s In pKentucky. the proportion in tobacco factories had in-
S.~obie, than' tein .times in the 40 years, and iii 4 other States
tW ~Jqreases haid been striking. The proportions in certain clothing
n4t. sies had increased more than five times in 4 of the States un-
dr consideration, and it had doubled or more than doubled in .4

.7 W w in- manufacturing, 1920.
"' b.i6biJFifdseye view: of: the distribution of women in manufacturing
4 "t el"in' thde 10' Southern States in 1920( again reveals consider-
l' .9tle- iitidn -among' the States, and gives' decided indication- of
,, deglet toward 'diversification. .
Th ile il 6i of the'States the textile- industry employed much the
: : pgt p'roportTionh'of the women in manufacturing. the 10 Statbs
i together employed-fewer than one-fifth of the women in textile mills
I9 i he beitir do6ainfy., In Florida, Kentucky, and Viaginia the largest
j'r.i'upnpsof womeniwere m cigar 'and tobacco factories,, and, the 10


States employed more than one-third of the women so engaged ini the
United States. i-
The 10 States employed about one-tenth of the women in the whole
country who were in certain clothing industries, such as cloak,.suit.
and dress manufacturing and the making of shirts and overalls.
These included over one-third of the women in manufacturing in
Maryland and nearly one-fifth of those in Kentucky, but fewer than
one-tenth of those in each of the other States.
The 10 States employed, roughly, 1 in 6 of the women in. the
country who were in lumber and furniture factories, 1 in 9 of those
in certain food industries, and 1 in 14 of those in printing and pub-
lishing. Lumber and furniture showed an unusual geographic dis-
tribution, every State having a group of women so employed, but:the
numbers ranging only -from 217 to 752. In Tennessee, Virginia,
Kentucky, and Maryland from 400 to 600 women were in printing
and publishing. The State of Mississippi, on the other hand, had
only 26 women so reported.
The food industries had a greater relative importance in Missis-
sippi and Maryland than in the other States. In Maryland a con-
siderable group of women-4.8 per cent-were in metal work, and in
Kentucky practically 3 per cent were in shoe factories.


The ever-present problem of wages is especially apparent in the
South. Prominent among the reasons for the low wage paid women
in this section are two historical factors, which I will discuss briefly.
In the first place, until very recently, values have been affected by
the standards of an agricultural civilization, and they still are so
affected to a large extent. When the tenant farmer who, with, the
help of his wife and children, raises crops on shares, raises his own
vegetables and cures his own meat, pays his rent with his labor, ind
frequently does not handle over $200 or $250 in money in the year-
and the number of such tenant farmers in the South is legion, as
recent studies in certain States have shown 2-when such a farmer
hears of a young girl earning $10 or $12 a week tending a loom and
the rest of the family earning in proportion, it sounds like a measure
of wealth. But if he transplants his family to the mill town he soon
realizes how its financial needs expand when most of the food and
clothing must be bought, and how small are the wages in relation to
the need.
The second historical factor that has set a low-wage standard dor
women in the South has been the dominance in manufacturing df
textiles, an industry that has been followed by a low-wage standard
whatever the locality in which it has developed. In a study of .the
wages of over 100,000 women in many industries in 13 States,. lte
Women's Bureau found wages universally low in cotton mills.. The
low wage for women in textiles may be considered a direct result of
the low money value usually attached to the services of the woman
2A recent study in North Carolina stated that there were 63,487 white tenant
farmers in that State, with their families numbering 317,500. or nearly one-fifth of tfe
entire white population.-Dickey, J. A., and Branson, E. C., How Farm 'ienantsULi. e.
University of North Carolina.


itr'the'home. 'There she:spun and wove, in the-early days, without
Mohey payment. When she went to spin and weave in the factory,
her employer and she herself set a low money value on her work.
'The State studies made by the Women's Bureau in periods of fairly
ifrinmal. business activity include three large cotton-manufacturing
ties '- the South-Mississippi, Georgia, and Tennessee. In the
fitknamed, 1 in 4 of the full-time women workers in cotton mills
60hid.less than $8 a week, and in Georgia and Tennessee about
1' or 7 earned less than $10. Even the larger of these is less than
Living wage for a woman in the South, and the situation becomes
Ell mpre serious when it is found that earnings of women in cotton
1it. in these States showed a tendency to decline for women over 40
.. Toreoyer, earnings of women in cotton factories have shown a
Srked decline in recent years. Pay-roll data published by the
tt:i' States Bureau of Labor Statistics for the period from 1924
S1I928howed declines during that time of from 0.4 to 16.6 per cent
S. ea:t ings in Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Vir-
nia, and a slight advance-4.5 per cent-only in Alabama. The
i ings of more than 10,000 women spinners and of more than 8,000
en weavers in 11 cotton-manufacturing States in the whole
try as reported in the same study, showed a decline of over 12
A lo6w wage for women not only necessitates a low standard of
1'r' the women and their families but the evidence is conclu-
Saccording to some of the most noted economists, that such a.low
e paid one group tends to depress the wages of all workers, and
us to perpetuate a low living standard. Further, the effect upon
utry. is disastrous, since the low purchasing power of the
r's--and wage earners constitute about three-fourths of the buy-
,.population-forms a continuous constricting influence upon the
./ a s thatt industry otherwise might obtain for its goods.

i;;: Legislation for securing sound work conditions is likely to proceed
ly: in newly developing industrial communities. In the South
il: individualismn retained from the agricultural background has
: I e.oubtedly. tended to retard such legislation. However, some prog-
i -..has been .made, and we hope the awakening that is now taking
be among employers, workers, and the thinking men and women
"Ah .South will hasten the process in the near future..
tWMry inspection.
S The amounts spent for factory inspection are relatively small in
iost of the Southern States. In reporting :on the' costs. to :thd
ious. States of protection to person and property in 1928, the
ited. States Department of Commerce shows that in the country
i.a.,Jwhole factory inspection accounted for 2.9, per cent of the
I spent for such protection. In the 10 Southern States, under
g sideration ,.however, less than 1 per cent of the cost of protection
Spierson and property was. for factory inspection. Again the
States vary, naturally. 'Half spend nothing for factory inspection,



and Tennessee exceeds the proportion averaged in the United States,
the figure for that State being 3.5 per cent, exceeded. by only seven
States in the entire country. .
Hours of work. '
Two of the 10 States under consideration-Florida and Alabanm-
provide no protection against long hours. In surveys the Wonmei
Bureau made of these two States more than one-tenth of the' women
covered in factories, stores, and laundries had schedules of-60 hours
or longer in the week. '
The South's earliest hour law for women that has remained on '.e
statute books was enacted in Virginia in 1890. Alabama haid imn-
hour law for women as early as 1887, but it was in effect only sev"e
years. In the entire country, 10 States and the District of Columi"a
have 8-hour laws and 19 States have 81 -hour or 9-hour laws hut
those in the South stand mostly in the 10-hour class, with Tennes~'M
permitting 101/ hours, North Carolina 11 in manufacturing, afd
South Carolina 12 in stores. Of the eight Southern States having
hour legislation, only three restrict weekly hours in any industry :
less than 60: Tennessee has a 57-hour week, and South Carolina a-
Mississippi have set a maximum of 55 in certain manufacturing
That such hours should not prevail, especially for women worked'
with their multitudinous home duties, is so obvious as hardly to need!
stating. Progress to-day, in many parts of the country and in mai.
industries, is in the direction of the 40-hour 5-day week. The shortet'
workday means more general employment for everybody, more reg,
lar work for those employed, and increased time for the workr
to make use of many products than can be consumed only in leisuiie
hours. As an investment for national industrial' prosperity it is not
only fair but economically sound. Many statements could be qiuooe
of employers who have tried the shorter workday and found it gd)l
business from the standpoint of elimination of waste and spoiled
goods, reduction of absenteeism, reduction of accidents, and a mori
balanced production.
Night work.
The only State in this southern group that seeks to prevelnt.ttl&
great physical and psychological dangers that have been proven over
and over again to inhere in night work is South Carolina, whetiea
law of 1911 set 10 p. m. as the latest closing time for women's work
in stores. However, the far-seeing attitude of the textile manufakl
turers is now hastening the abolition of night work arid' *
encourage the crystallization of this social advance into be,
legislation. ,
Other labor legislation. .,. ,
Three of the 10 States-Alabama, Maryland, and Virginia--p0
vide that women shall not be exposed to the hazards of mine wborL
and the States with no legislation on this subject have few women
employed. The provision of seats for workers is required in 9 of'.
10 States, but in 3 of these-Maryland, South Carolina, and .A
bama-such legislation is in effect only for some type of mercapt4


establishment and does not apply to manufacturing (except in the city
of Baltimore).
Such, in the main, is the'lrief ale of'thld legislation provided in
hke .10 States under consideration in the industrially developing
6, J,'W' bileit isstill too eager, it 'is perhaps as much as would
have been found in other communities at the industrial stage now
rqachld' by the Soffth, and the signs of southern awakening to the
~~.M fur4i her measures give promise of better things to come.

~As the historical process of industrialization develops, with aspects
,peculiai-r to the locality, certain-hopeful tendencies are showing them-
s We6$' Here is a section that has far-seeing individuals who will
J profit-by the history of such a growth as is taking place in the South
S "-_*i1l avoid by wise management and fairness to their workers,
ognafe the more acute difficulties that may occur in other cases.
aerek arrd iiill owners and managers in the South who are showing
J se jtigment in the direction of improved wages, hours, and work-
pi:,: editions and the abolition of night work. Their success and
i. rideie in such enterprises influence others toward improvement.
e 4 ln4iber, f commerce of a leading Southern State, in a recent
ppi reportt, speaks as follows:
S .,......*. industrial development must not be allowed
W.tlsos'reault, in,.economic exploitation, lower social standards, business
i i Q. '# itsi, or public morals *
i,;. j,. ...i... Ibor must be given employment in indus-
::.: plants amid conditions productive not only of adequate wages
Sfr::- "Iu ti eondcicive also of good health, happiness, and contentment.
*E". aIpo O ,.t"sii!;;,');;. ':.
,With such pronouncements we can agree, and we can profess our-
Sfl~gg lingandglad to join hands with the aroused social forces
Sthis soudtbland. toward a new day for her .workers "-a day that shall
.i; ..ieffect a living wage, reasonable hours of work, for the day and
,: | g# gL, and the. abolition of night work; in short, the assurance
of time for leisure and opportunity for a healthier and a happier

: s. ... ... .
." e..

... .. .I.. .

T. q.l! .; h


TABLE I.-Number of gainfully-occupied persons and per cent they formed of.
total population 10 years of age and over, 1870 and 1920, by sex and State


Number of persons 10 years of age and over
who were gainfully occupied

Per cent that, gainfully-
occupied persons form-i
ed of total population
10 years of age and
over I

Men Women Men Women

1870 1920

1870 1920

United States.-------...........- 10.669,635 33.064,737 1,836,288 8,549,511 74.8

Alabama...----- ...-..------
Maryland-...... ------------.
North Carolina.................-
South Carolina............--...

10 Southern St tes-..............

329, 185
364, 300
192. 355
322, 585
337, 464

2,600, 885

684, 348
719, 629
46, 601

89. 618
9, 826
50, 293
53,8 60
45, 402

223, 86
85, 262
288, 745
205, 656
152, 108
1,778, 224


79. 5
77. 7
78. 6
77. 1
75. 5
77. 6
76. 5








I The smallest proportion of the woman population found gainfully occupied in any census year from 1870
to 1920 was in 1890 in Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, in 1880 in Kentucky and Virginia, and in 1870 in
the other States included and in the United States. The largest proportion was in 1910, and not in 1920,
due mainly to the fact that the census in the later year was taken in January instead of in the spring, greatly
reducing the numbers returned as in agricultural pursuits.
For men, the smallest proportion was in 1890, except in Maryland, South Carolina, and the United
States, in each of which it was in 1870. The largest proportion was in 1910, except in Alabama, Georgia,
and Mississippi, in each of which it was in 1880.

TABLE II.-Number of gainfully-occupied women and proportion of these fn
certain ocoupatioawl groups, 1890 and 1920, by State

Per cent of all women gainfully occupied who werd


Number of gainfully-
occupied women

United States...... 3914, 571

A labama ....-----....---
North Carolina--.--.--.......
South Carolina..........
Tennessee ..-...........-
in rlfn..an Otat a

84, 752
1 nAn Giqn

* ~-A, UflS, Lfl'U

A gricul-

1920 cent in- 1890 1920

8,549.511 118.4 17. 3 12.7

223,868 72.2 62. 58.4
85,262 222.7 37.0 17.6
288, 745 80.6 44.1 44.7
131,493: 57.7 14.2 14.7
137,2211 61.9 3.2 2.3
194,9641 56.2 71.6 68.0
202,697i 76.0 48. 39. 7
205, 656' 58.9 68. 61.7
152, 1081 88.8 29.61 23.9
156,210 46.9 15.7 11.9
1,I778,224 70.8 43.2 38.5
2I i


1890 1920

26.2 22.6

and per-

1890 1920

41.2 25.6

25.9 25.6
42.4 46.4
40.2 29.8
54.6 33.6
54.9 35.4
19.8 18.7
32.7 21.5
19.0 18.6
50.2 36.4
60.7 41.1
37.8 28.9

Clerical AU
service other

1890 1920 1890 1920

3.1 16.7 12.22.5

.3 3.5 6.4 9.3
.7 6.8 10.4 16.3
.4 4.9 7.610.6
2.0 11.1 10.021.2
1.7 15.7, 11.820.3
.2 2.0 5.8 8.2
.2 3.9 7.111.9
.2 2.2 5.8 7.2
1.1 8.1 &. 416.7
.7 10.4 9.418. 4

.6 6.11 7.812.9




TABLE III.---hu ber of vomen in ma.nuftaetrring, aGfd proportion of these in
chief industries, 1920, by State


.* V.:.: '.-' ": '.
.,. Number of Women in manufacturing who were in-
women in ___________________
factoring Cigars and Food i Certain Lumber Printing
i tri Textiles Ci a d Food in- clothing and furni- and pub-
industries tobacco dustries industries ture listing

United States.- I. 1,930, 341 471,332 97, 822 93,140 267, 472 29,379 43,672
Alabama-.........----------.. 15, 103, 8, 405 33 491 760 520 105
Florida--------------................ 10,923 78 5,380 292 208 543 64
Georgia.............-----------.....-- 28,970 15, 136 248 1,366 2,012 685 306
Kentucky 2.............. 25,536 1,591 7,035 1,096 4,602 447 549
Maryland ---------.... 36, 195 3,294 1,636 3,568 12,177 306 586
Mississippi -----...... --- 6,067, 1,368 ----------- 639 281 467 26
:North Carolina --.........--- 46,655' 29,116 9,828 214 683 528 99
South Carolina---------... .. 21,029 15,748 575 257 317 217 57
Tennessee...--- .. 22,585 9,947 775 852 2,032 752 421
Virginia .-.........-------- ... 28,371 4,703 9,657 1,851 2,673 599 531
10 Jloutheti States .. 241,434 89,386 35,167 10,626 25,745 6,064 2,744

United States.....


100.0 24.4 5.1 4.8 13.9 15. 2 2.3

:Alabam ............ 100. O 65. 7 .2 3.3 5.0 3.4 .7
Florida ----....-------------- 100.0 .7 49.3 2.7 1.9 5.0 .6
ergia...------------------ 100.0 52.2 .9 4.7 6.9 2.4 1.1
Kntucky .-------------- 100.0 6.2 27.5 4.3 18.0 1.8 2.1
1:d ....--- ........ 100.0 9.1 4.5 9.9 S3.6 8 1. 6
S ippL --........ 100.0 22.5 (1) 10.5 4.6 7.7 .4
i ar a....a--------..... 100.0 62.4 21.1 .5 1.5 1. 1 .2
out Olin ...... .n-------., 100.0 74.9 2.7 1.2 1.5 1.0 .3
iTb nnIssee............... 100.0 44.0 3.4 3.8 9.0 3.3 1.9
Viinia..... -......-- 100.0 16.6 34.0 6.5 9.4 2.1 1. 9
: Southern States t 100:0 37.0 14.6 4.4 10.7 2.1 1.1

1. J: ery State a large group of those not reported here were dressmakers, seamstresses, and milliners,
not i..factories..
:In Kentucky 740 women (2.9 per cent) were in shoe factories.
.In Maryland 1,742 women (4.8 per cent) were in metal industries.
4 The proportion of all women so employed in the United States who were in the 10 Southern States
w::.. was as follows:
wsa. : Per cent Per cent
'---. -, -.,-'_, ..........----.. 19.0 Certain clothing industries ------------.. ----- 9.6
S"..Cigand tobacco------------......-----.....35.9 Lumber and furniture.---.............--------------........--- 17.2
S. ndstries-----..--....------.........--------....... 11.4 Printing and publishing................-----...--------... 7.2
4 : : Les than one-tenith of 1 per cent.

; TABLE IV.-Num-ber of 'onmen in manufacturing and proportion of these in
textile, tobacco, and certain clothing industries, 1880 and 1920, by State

Per cent of women in manufacturing who
Number of women in were in-
all manufacturing
State industries Textilps Cigars and to- Certain cloth-
bacco ing industries

1880 1920 1880 1920 1880 1920 1880 1920

United States.. ---- 631,215 1,930,341 25.3 24.4 1.7 5.1 10.7 13.9
Albama ----------.........----------- 3,530 15,103 39.3 55. 7 .4 .2 .7 5.0
Florida...--.......................------- 629 10,923 1.6 .7 16.1 49.3 .3 1.9
Georgia--------------....---------. 209 28,970 34.0 52.2 .1 .9 1.6 6.9
Kantucky..---------------------7,687 25.536 3.4 6.2 2.7 27.5 9.0 18.0
Maryland ..--------... ---------- 14,711 36, 195 14.5 9.1 1.8 4.5 16.0 33.6
Mississippi.........------------------- 1,789 6,067 29.6 22.5 .1 ) .4 4.6
: North Carolina----------------- 5,528 46,655 37.7 62.4 8.8 21.1 2.0 1.5
80th Carolina-.................. -----3,811 21,029 36.4 74.9 (1) 2.7 1.0 1.5
Tennessee.-----------.... ---------- 3.636 22. 585 21.4 44.0 .9 3.4 2.8 9.0
Virginia.........................------------ 8,449 28,371 10.4 16.6 31.8 34.0 1.8 9.4
10 Southern States........-- .....-- 56,979 241,434 20. 37.0 6.7 14.6 6.3 10.7

1 Less than one-tenth of I per cent.


TABLE Vr.- Legal limitation of working hou.r8 for Cwomen, by -Sti "- 'p


Alabama 1-..........
Georgia ............




North Carolina .. -

South Carolina..--



Legal limit
fixed for-

Daily Weekly
hours hours













Establishments to which legal limit applies


Men and women in cotton or woolen mills.'
Excepts clerical force, cleaners, and specified
occupations that employ chiefly men. May
exceed daily but not weekly limit.
Laundries, bakeries, factories, workshops,
stores or mercantile, manufacturing, or
mechanical establishments, hotels, restau-
rants, telephone and telegraph.
Manufacturing, mechanical, mercantile, print-
ing, baking, laundering establishments.
Excepts fruit and vegetable canneries. Pro-
vides for certain emergencies in certain parts
of the State.
Women in enumerated list or "any other oc-
cupation not here enumerated." Excepts
domestic service.
Men and women in mills, canneries, work-
shops, factories, or manufacturing establish-
ments. Excepts fruit or vegetable canneries,
and emergencies.
Factories and manufacturing establishments.
Same for men with some exceptions: Excepts
office men and specified occupations that
employ chiefly men.
Women in mercantile establishments-...-......

Men and women in cotton and woolen mills.2
Specified overtime allowed for emergencies.
Enumerated list, or "any kind of establish-
ment wherein labor is employed or ma-
chinery used." Excepts domestic service,
fruit and vegetable canneries, and agricul-
tural pursuits.
Factories, workshops, laundries, restaurants,
mercantile or manufacturing establishments.
Excepts clerical workers, fruit and vegetable
canneries, stores in smaller towns.

Legal prohibition
of night work





None.. '
..i'.". 8. *

Womed in t'ei'r-
cantile "not -a-
lowed': to Work
after 10 p 'ir.,
None. .:; '/



I Alabama wa; the first of the 10 States to pass hour legislation. The 8-hour law of 1837, applying to
manufacturing and mechanical industries, was repealed in 1894.
2 Of the women in manufacturing, industries other than textiles employ: In Georgia, at .least. 12,400
women, or over 40 per cent of all in manufacturing: in South Carolina, about 3,500 women, or more 'han
15 per cent of all in manufacturing.

.. ,

>. : ;

[Any of these bulletins still available will be sent free of charge upon request]
W, i.. -Proposed Employment of Women During the War in the Industries of
.Niagara Falls, N. Y. 16 pp. 1918.
S:No.. 2. Labor Laws for Women in Industry in Indiana. 29 pp. 1919.
y.i'No. 3. Standards for the Employment of Women in Industry. 8 pp. Fourth
. .'... ed., 1928.
; No. 4. Wages of- Candy Makers in Philadelphia in 1919. 46 pp. 1919.
N.o. 5. The Eight-Hoir Dav in Federal and State Legislation. 19 pp. 1919.
1 .. 6. The Employment of Women in Hazardous Industries in the Un.ted
:l: wu ...'i/, States. 8 pp. 1921.. .
:o; 7. Night-Work Laws in the United States. (1919.)' 4 pp. 1920.
l. %.'8i Womnen' in the Government Service. 37 pp. 1920.
iNo 9. Home Work in Bridgeport, Conn. 35 pp. 1920.
.i' f..10. Hours and' Conditions of Work 'for Women Ip Industry in Virginia.
32 pp. 1920.
N 0-1N'bifi omen- Street-Car Conductors and Ticket Agents. 90 pp. 1921.
T No.12 he New Position of Women in American Industry. 158 pp. 1920.
No6.3.18. Industrial Opportunities and Training for Women and Girls. 48 pp.
^N o.14. A Physiological Basis for the Shorter Working Day for Women. 20 pp.
,'" ';1D21.
[!U.[h i.5.Sbon te Effects of Legislation Limiting Hours of Work for Women.
i :: ..26 pp. 1921.
o:::: 6. (See Bulletin 63.)
~I~., aei s -Wages in Kansas. 104 pp. 1921. '
^j.f!1;8.J thaltb Pioblems of Wormen in Industry. 6 pp. Revised, 1931.
i....Iowa Women in Industry. 73 pp. 1922.
A-o1Wem4n in Industry. 65 pp. 1922.
21" .Women in Rhode Island Industries. 73 pp. 1922.
2K,2 Wo'men'if, hGeorgia. Industries. 89 pp. 1922.
:2$. Y:.The- Fimily'Status'of Breadwinning Women. 43 pp. 1922.
t :61.:24". Women in Ma'iyland Industries.' 96 pp. 1922.
t 2... ..Wwmnen inh the Candy Industry in Chicago and St. Louis. 72'pp. 1923.
&26., Women-'fn' Arkansas Industries. 86 pp. 1923.
W.P.Jen Occupational Progress of 'Women. 37 pp. 1922.
S.. .Women's Contributions in the Field of Invention. 51 pp. 1923.
lW :inn in Kentucky Industries. 114 pp. 1923.
tail i :."The Share of Wage-Earning Women in Family Support. 170 pp. 1923.
W. dt' Industry Means to Women! Workers. 10 pp. 1923.
Women in South Carolina Industries. 128 pp. 1923.
.7 p itPr6eedings of the Women's Industrial Conference. 190 pp. 1923.'
0P &34. Women in Alabama Industries. 86 pp. 1924.
A ':So. 35. Women in Missouri Industries. 127 pp. 1924.
&:' m.. 36. Radio Talks on Women in Industry. 34 pp. 1924.
": No. 37. Women in New Jersey Industries. 99 pp. 1924.
flSK8. Married Women in Industry. 8 pp. 1924. '
SNo:.3. Domestic Workers and Their Employment Relations. 87 :pp. 1924.
|! Ne40i (See Bulletin 63.)
No. 41, Famil.y Status of Breadwinning Women in Four Selected Cities. 145
S pp. 1925.
1jm^b. 42. List of References on 'Minimum 'Wage for Women in the United States
p i?'.' and Canada. 42 pp. 1925.
| No. 48. Standard and Scheduled Hours of Work 'for Women in Industry. 68
il ,Sr' pp. 1925. o .
!No. 44. Women in Ohio Industries. 137 pp. 1925.
e i 45. Hemne Entironment and Employment' Opportunities of Women in Coal-
mine Workers' Families. 61 pp. 1925;.: '
No. 46. Facts about Working Women-A Graphic Presentation Based-on Census
Statistics. 64 pp. 1925. .. .
,b. 47. Women in tlhe Fruit-Growling: and Canning> InIdudtries in the State .'of.
Washington. 223 pp. 1926. .

Supply exhausted.

''" L:"% '. ". ;i: "3


11111I 111111 II 11111111111111111111111 ill Ili Hll
14 WOMEN'S PLACE IN INDUSTRY IN 10 3 1262 08859 0434

*No. 48. Women in Oklahoma Industries. 118 pp. 1926.
No. 49. Women Workers and Family Support. 10 pp. 1925;" .', :
No. 50. Effects of Applied Research upon the Employment Opportunit"i i:
American Women. 54 pp. 1926. .''
No. 51. Women in Illinois Industries. 108 pp. 1926.
No. 52. Lost Time and Labor Turnover in Cottop Mills. 208 pp. .12. 1 '*
No. 53. The Status of Women in the Government Service in 1925. :103 pp. i:
No. 54. Changing Jobs. 12 pp. 1926.
No. 55. Women in Mississippi Industries. 89 pp. 1926. ..
No. 56. Women in Tennessee Industries. 120 pp. 1927. .,
No. 57. Women Workers and Industrial Poisons. 5 pp. 1926. / ;
No. 58. Women in Delaware Industries. 156 pp. 1927. -.(* *
No. 59. Short Talks About Working Women. 24 pp. 1927. F F-',, .
No. 60. Industrial Accidents to Women in New Jersey, Ohio, and Wisconsin. =
316 pp. 1927. ., .
No. 61. The Development of Minimum-Wage Laws in- the United. S'ats! '
to 1927. 635 pp. 1928. -
No. 62. Women's Employment in Vegetable Canneries in DelawaqeiM.4
No. 63. State Laws Affecting Working Women. 51 pp. 1927. (Bevyil otqf.,
Bulletins 16 and 40.) :'A. .'
No. 64. The Employment of Women at Night. 86 pp. 1928. ,.. f'
*No. 05. The Effects of Labor Legislation on the Employment Opportunities f"
Women. 498 .pp. 1928.
No. 66. History of Labor Legislation for Women in Three States;.Ghrono1tgiejl
Development of Labor Legislation for Women in the United-"St~s.
288 pp. 1929. g. ; "
No. 67. Women Workers in Flint, Mich. 80 pp. 1929. ; .......
No. 68. Summary: The Effects of Labor Legislation on the Employment:O
tunities of Women. (Reprint of Chapter 2 of Bulletin O5.) 22' :
1928. ,
No. 69. Causes of Absence for Men and for Women in Four CottopMp-- :.I
pp. 1929. ... zr:".
No. 70. Negro Women in Industry in 15 States. 74 pp. 1929. ; ... .
No. 71. Selected References on the Health of Women in Industry. pI : : ::i
No. 72. Conditions of Work in Spin Rooms. 41 pp. 1929. .....
No. 73. Variations in Employment Trends of Women and Men.. 143,i .ppl 0.
No. 74. The Immigrant Woman and Her Job. 179 pp. 1930. '
No. 75. What the Wage-Earning Woman Contributes to Family 9PDE ko
pp. 1929. .
No. 76. Women in 5-and-10-cent Stores and Limited-Price Chain Dei
Stores. 58 pp. 1930. .*.';** J l
No. 77. A Study of Two Groups of Denver Married Women Applying; A:
11 pp. 1929. ,.W A :
No. 78. A Survey of Laundries and Their Women Workers in 23, it'ltq ....
pp. 1930. :, ..
No. 79. Industrial Home Work. 20 pp. 1930. ,. .i
No. 80. Women in Florida Industries. 115 pp. 1930. :.;
No. 81. Industrial Accidents to Men and Women. 48 pp. 1930. .,,,
No. 82. The Employment of Women in the Pineapple Canneries of .
30 pp. 1930.
No. 83. Fluctuation of Employment in the Radio Industry. 66 pp;, 101. .1
No. 84. Fact Finding with the Women's Bureau. 37 pp. 1931. 42 .4tM ii
No. 85. Wages of Women in 13 States. 211 pp. 1931. ...
No. 86. Activities of the Women's Bureau of the United States. it, .
No. 87. Sanitary Drinking Facilities, with Special Reference. to Dri"Hn.-
Fountains. 28 pp. 1931. ; .': ,J
No. 88. The Employment of Women in Slaughtering and Meat Packing.
press.) t '''
No. 89. The Industrial Experience of Women Workers at the SummerA.bjl
1928 to 1930. (In press.) '
No. 90. Oregon Legislation for Women in Industry. (In press.) '
Pamphlet. Women's Place in Industry in 10 Southern States. 14 pp. l3! :
Annual Reports of the Director, 1919*, .1920*, 1921*, 1922, 1923, 1924*, 1925i
1927*, 1928*, 1929, 1930, 1931.
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