San Francisco 1906 Earthquake Marriage Project

Newspaper Articles Regarding
Employment Opportunities for Young Women...


Many Want Employment. Oakland Tribune, 21 April 1906, page 4.
Employment for Women Refugees. Sacramento Evening Bee, 23 April 1906, page 7.
To Save the Girls. Oakland Tribune, 28 April 1906, page 3.
Will Help the Girls. Oakland Tribune, 29 April 1906, page 4.
Work for Women. Oakland Tribune, 1 May 1906, page 4.
Work for 5000 Girls. Oakland Tribune, 02 May 1906, page 2.
Chances for Young Women, Many Positions Ready for Girl Refugees. Los Angeles Daily Times, 02 May 1906, page 7.
Scenes at The Woman's Free Employment Bureau. Oakland Tribune, 3 May 1906, page 8.
Gigantic is This Project. Los Angeles Daily Times, 4 May 1906, page 1.
Will Find Places for Unemployed Women. Oakland Enquirer, 9 May 1906, page 3.


The Relief Committee has been informed that accomodations for several hundred persons may be had in East Oakland, Fruitvale and at Hayward and it asks such members of the committee who have not received official notification, to direct refugees to those places.

The Relief Committee desires all persons who can give employment to cooks, housemaids, gardeners, machinists and carpenters, to notify the employment department of the Relief Committee in the Chamber of Commerce.  They also ask all parties desiring to secure employment to register at once in with the Relief Committee at the Chamber of Commerce.

The financial committee of the Citizens' Relief Committee requests all financial persons not to give money or checks to anyone unless satisfied that the parties are duly authorized to collect.  The Finance Committee members wear blue badges and are as follows:  James P. Taylor, Harry G. Williams, Theo Gier, J. Edoff, Dr. J. F[earnfi?], H. G. Morrow.  Money may be paid to any of these men or to the treasurer, D. Edward Collins, or to the officers of the Masons, Elks or Royal Arch.  The committee also asks donations of food and clothing, as the same are urgently needed.  Send all such to the Chamber of Commerce for distribution.

Source: Oakland Tribune, 21 April 1906, page 4.


The Women's Council requests The Bee to make the announcement that through it the Central California Canneries at Front and P Streets offers employment to 100 women and girls - refugees from San Francisco.

Source:  Sacramento Evening Bee, 23 April 1906, page 7.


About forty leading club women of Alameda county assembled yesterday afternoon at the First Congregational Church in response to a call from Miss Ethel Moore of the Home Club, with a view to the betterment of the condition of the women stationed at the various camps about the city.

Addresses were made by the Rev. C. R. Brown and Labor Commissioner Stafford, giving some valuable suggestions in regard to the work.  Reports were also made by two or three ladies, who said there was grave danger apt to result from the manner in which young, unprotected women were brought in contact with dissolute characters.

It was determined to open a free labor employment bureau and to ask the cooperation of the women's clubs throughout California, as well as all the churches in the State, whereby avenues of employment might be thrown open to those who must be self-supporting.

Committees were appointed, one to secure the services of an experienced woman to assist in the employment agency, another to investigate the question of housing these women, and still another to interview and find out the number desiring employment.  In addition numerous minor committees were formed.  The organization expects to be ready for active work this afternoon, when another meeting will complete arrangements.

In addition to the subject under discussion Mr. Stafford brought up the questions of the thousands of unemployed cash and errand boys, who, he said, under existing conditions were apt to become street gamins if not looked after.

Plans would probably be perfected, the Labor Commissioner announced, whereby these boys could be formed into camps and engage in fruit picking and packing, thus solving the problem which yearly confronts California growers.

Source: Oakland Tribune, 28 April 1906, page 3.


The club women of Oakland, assisted by church and fraternal organizations, have undertaken the task of caring for unemployed women and girls stationed in the various relief camps about the city.  The ladies will work in co-operation with the General Relief Committee.

A free employment bureau for women is to be established to-morrow at the Masonic Temple, Twelfth and Washington streets.  Every endeavor will be made to supply work to any seeking it, and employers are asked to leave at the agency a lists of positions they desire filled.

The executive board of the women's employment committee consists of the chairmen of various sub-committees, as follows:

Mrs. J. B. Hume, employment; Mrs. Cora Jones, housing; Mrs. H. C. Capwell, press and printing; Mrs. Harry Meek, helpers; Mrs. Emery, rooms; Dr. Maxon, publicity; Mrs. J. S. Green, visiting camps, and Mrs. F. L. Brown, finance committee.

A meeting to report progress will be held to-morrow afternoon at the First Congregational Church.  It is proposed to notify all the women's clubs of California of the movement in order that they may extend a helping hand.

Source: Oakland Tribune, 29 April 1906, page 4.


Hundreds of women and girls have already applied for work to the Oakland Free Employment Bureau for women and girls, at the Masonic Temple.  Every profession and trade is represented among the applicants, many of whom are willing to leave town.  If employers throughout the interior, as well as those about the bay, will send to the agency a list of the positions they desire filled, together with particulars, every effort will be made to supply their needs.  The ladies in charge are a sub-committee of the General Relief Committee of Oakland, and they are ably assisted in their work by Miss Kate Plunkett and her sister, of San Francisco, who have generously donated their services for an entire month.  Papers of the interior will confer a favor by making public the facts of the work, in order that demands may be filled.  There are stenographers, cashiers, cooks, domestics, factory hands and workers of every description awaiting work.

An endeavor has been made to locate all applicants for positions, and among the many on hand today, only two were found to be unchaperoned by friends or relatives.

Source: Oakland Tribune, 1 May 1906, page 4.


The canneries of San Leandro have notified the Women's Free Employment Bureau of Oakland that they can furnish employment to 500 [sic] girls and women at $1 per day, with their lodging provided in addition.

Free passage may be obtained by those desiring such employment by applying to the Women's Bureau, at the First Unitarian Church, corner Fourteenth and Castro streets.

Source: Oakland Tribune, 02 May 1906, page 2.



Practical Relief Work Being Done by Mrs. Gibbs With Headquarters in The Times Information Bureau.  Few Refugees Sent to Camp Angelus Yesterday.

Remarkably good work is being accomplished by the Woman's Parliament Free Employment Bureau, in charge of Mrs. Jefferson D. Gibbs, with headquarters in the Information and Resort Bureau of The Times, on the fourth floor of the Times Building.  Since this excellent method of reaching the women and girl refugees was started by Mrs. Gibbs with the purpose of helping them to help themselves by getting for them positions which each individual is capable of filling with satisfaction, the bureau has developed so extensively that a number of other members of the Woman's Parliament have been called to help Mrs. Gibbs in her relief work.

And now it has been found necessary to divide the work into departments, systemized in such a way that the work can be carried on without confusion. There are four of these departments, thus: Listing of employers, in charge of Miss M. M. Fette; registration of applicants, in charge of Mrs. J. F. Kanst; homes for the homeless, in charge of Mrs. R. J. Waters; outfitting, Mrs. A. S. Abbot.

Besides these heads of departments a committee of well-known women are assisting in the work of the bureau, including Mrs. J. W. Hendrick, Mrs. Will Thilenius, Mrs. S. Grover, Mrs. W. W. McLeod, Mrs. W. B. Burrows, Mrs. Wood and Mrs. Small.

Although so many girls and young women have been supplied with positions there are still 195 places to be filled and Mrs Gibbs wants deserving young women for the places.  There are today places for 139 girls for general housework, fifteen cooks, thirteen tailoresses, eleven nurses, three laundresses and fourteen miscellaneous positions.

Applicants who wish to register with the free employment bureau can reach The Times Information Bureau by elevator or stairs from the Broadway entrance to The Times Building.

Source: Los Angeles Daily Times, 02 May 1906, page 7.


At the Women's Free Employment Bureau all day long the room is crowded with feminine bread winners, seeking the place where they may use their brains or hands, and in return receive the necessities of life for themselves or those they love.  There are wan, refined faces, with desperate eyes.  There are flushed, worried faces, set in determination.  There are motherly women with soft, white hair and gentle voices.  There are little girls, bright-eyed and hopeful  There are American, German, Swedish, French, Portuguese, Italian, Swiss and English.  There are stenographers, bookeepers, laundresses, cooks, general house-keepers, clerks, dress-makers, music teachers, photographers, even the decorator for artistic dinner cards.  There is the poor, tired German, walking the floor hour after hour with the fretful baby, wondering what she can do and how she shall care for her child.  There is old Margaret and the bashful bachelor parleying over who should feed the chickens.  There is Miss Plunkett and her sister, fine, capable women, level headed, kindly, and there is Miss Ethel Moore and a score of club women trying to solve the labor problem for these helpless, willing ones.  And the demand for positions is so large and the call for help is so small.

For two days the little room in Masonic Temple has been thronged and the Woman's Free Employment Bureau has learned the joy of service.  Now the Bureau has been removed to the Starr King rooms in the First Unitarian Church and the splendid work continued.

Too much praise cannot be given this branch in the great relief work of the San Francisco sufferers or the busy women, who have laid aside their personal desires, and given their time to solving the great bread and butter problem of these scores of women.  It is good to watch them and if any one has criticized the work of women's clubs let them forever be stilled.  Miss Ethel Moore, chairman of the bureau and president of the Home Club, is giving her whole time to the success of the relief and when she says: 'I'm sorry we have not the kind of work you are seeking now, but maybe in an hour or two something will be here for you.  Just keep up your courage,' a girl is apt to believe in her sincerity.

There is Mrs. J. B. Hume, who served Ebell the past two years as president; Miss Cora Jones, president of the Oakland Club; Mrs. H. C. Capwell, Miss Grace Sperry, Miss Ray Wellman, Dr. Maxson, Miss Evelyn Ellis, Mrs. H. Meek, Mrs. W. S. Peters, Mrs. J. B. Baker, Mrs. Warren Olney, Jr., and a score of others, all interested in the one great work, to find homes and help the women who are frank enough to ask their help.  And the spirit is kindly, considerate, as one woman to another.

The Woman's Free Employment Bureau is one of the best of the relief measures, and perhaps one of the most needed.  The women in charge of the work ask that all who are in need of help, whether of the hand or head, communicate with them at their quarters in the First Unitarian Church and allow them to privilege of helping these girls that must be helped.

Source: Oakland Tribune, 3 May 1906, page 8.


Yet Will They Work With a Lever of Love.
Will Bring Three Thousand Homeless Girls Here.
Mrs. Gibbs and Assistants Aid Many Women.

To bring the three thousand forlorn and destitute women and girls, who are huddled in unhealthy camps in San Francisco, to this city and provide them with congenial employment, is the new departure which Mrs. Jefferson D. Gibbs, president of the Woman's Parliament of Southern Callifornia, who has been in charge of the employment and information bureau established in The Times building, has planned to take up this morning.

The homes of wealthy Los Angeles residents have been thrown open to the unfortunate women victims of San Francisco with such earnestness that yesterday, when Mrs. Gibbs and her corps of assistants ended their work, they had already placed over 400 women and girls in desirable employment and had places vacant to 280 more.

Facing this great demand, and at the same time hearing from friends in the northern city to the frightful condition of thousands of homeless women, it was decided to bring them here.

"San Francisco is a place for men, not for women," said Mrs. Gibbs yesterday.  "There is work of a manual character there in plenty, but the women are helpless.  The means of earning a livlihood have been cut off completely.  Girls who were employed in offices find themselves without even a prospect of work.  Hundreds who had homes have lost their all, and many are without protectors.  There have been hundreds of able-bodied men come to this city from San Francisco.  We don't want them, and will not give them employment.  They must return where there is work for all of them and where they are needed.


"With the women it is different.  Mothers who have lost their children and wives who have lost their husbands are in these outdoor camps where, at the best, they are in hard circumstances.  The poeple of Los Angeles have responded to the plea for assistance sent out by this bureau in a wonderful manner.  We are deluged with offers of employment from all sides.  Congenial work for all women and girls is offered."

This morning Mrs. Gibbs will communicate by wire with Mrs. Mary Alice Keatinge and Mary F. Osten, the noted authoresses, who are doing all in their power to aid the women in San Francisco camps.

These ladies will be asked to send a body of 100 at first to this city.  The promise of work is held out to them.

An effort is being made to secure transportation for the women to this city.  It is understood that the Southern Pacific will grant passes to the women and girls who bear a note from either Mrs. Keatinge or Miss Osten and who are bound for the employment bureau in The Times building.

At the close of "business" last night, tired, but happy, Mrs. Gibbs issued the follwoing bulletin of positions open for women and girls:

General House work 178.
First-class cooks, 6.
Second girls, 2.
Nurse girls, 6.
Seamstresses, 12.
Tailoresses, 4.
Laundresses, 4.
Sewers in overall factory, 25.
Girls for canning company, 24.
Photo printer and finisher, 1.
Candy factory girls, 12.
Companions, 2.
Nurses for training, 2.
Nurses for hospital, 2.
Nurses for Red Cross hospital, 1.
Matron for home, 1.

There are many other places open, but they have not been classified as yet, owing to the rush of work at the bureau.


While the new work has not been entirely outlined its possibilities have been recognized by the ladies, and they have entered into it with enthusiasm.  An effort will be made to secure Christ Church, on Figueroa street, for the headquarters for the first party of 100 which is expected to arrive by Monday morning.

Care will be taken in securing the needy ones.  This work will be in charge of the two noted authoresses, already mentioned, who have refused to leave the stricken city, and have remained to care for the women and children.

There is sufficient food and equipment that has already been collected to care for these women in this city.  Camp Angelus has a large stock of provisions and bedding.  The inactivity of the incoming women will be of short duration, according to the eagerness which which help has been sought in this city.


There are but a few men cared for now in the relief camps of Los Angeles, and these will be put to work or preferably given transportation to San Francisco, where there is already a crying need for men.

The growth of the bureau under Mrs. Gibbs has been so great that yesterday the work was divided into departments with a head for each.  Mrs. J. F. Kanst is chairman of the registration of applicants department; Mrs. R. J. Waters of the homes for the homeless department, Miss M. M. Fette of the listing of employers, E. T. East of Whittier has charge of the male applicants, and Mrs. Adelbert S. Abbott of the outfitting department.

Yesterday over sixty men applied for work, and were cared for.  Mr. East prevailed upon several to return to San Francisco, and those who had no valid reason for not wanting to go back were given short shrift.

The work of the bureau has not been limited alone to securing positions of a definite character, but several music teachers and two school teachers from San Francisco have been assisted.  The music teachers asked for recommendations, and that was all, and one of the school teachers taught yesterday in a Los Angeles school, where she filled the place of a substitute.


Many families of the city have offered their houses to homeless women and girls, and will care for them until work is secured.

The ladies of the bureau have made a strong plea for good, clean, "new" under muslins for women.  Some of the clothing sent has been unfit to wear.  The women and girls have, in most instances, been deprived of all of their clothing, except the most scanty supply.  They have been unable to change this condition for the last ten or twelve days, and many, upon their arrival in Los Angeles, wept for shame when they told of the condition of their clothing.

A large number of the refugees plan going farther east, and Miss Fette of the listing employers' department has asked for donations of hand satchels, old trunks and bags which the women and girls can use.

Source: Los Angeles Daily Times, 4 May 1906, page 1.



The Federated Women's Clubs of Los Angeles offered to find positions for two hundred women in Los Angeles in household service.  Mrs. L. Blanchard has come to San Francisco to take back that number, who will be cared for in a camp at Los Angeles until places are secured for them.  All women who wish to avail themselves of this opportunity to get to work may report at the Red Cross Employment Bureau, Fillmore and Herman streets, at 2 o'clock to-day.

Source: Oakland Enquirer, 9 May 1906, page 3.

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