harvey girl uniform

The prototypical early uniform consisted of a long black dress (no more than 8 inches above the floor) overlaid with a starched white apron, black opaque stockings and black shoes. “Harvey Girls became women well educated in the needs, moods, affectations and habits of people from all over the United States,” Poling-Kempes writes. Thousands of ladies sent in their applications.

Enjoy! accessed October 18, 2020), Latimer, Rosa Walston.

These women became the famed Harvey Girl waitresses, trained in rules of etiquette and given black-and-white uniforms befitting a nun. The iconic imagery of the Harvey Girls was so legendary that it inspired the 1946 MGM production The Harvey Girls, which starred Judy Garland. These young women braved the perils of an uncivilized West while maintaining a reputation for femininity and morality that has stood the test of time. Sign up for our periodic e-mail newsletter, and get news about our The True Story of Mrs. Alford's Nitroglycerin Factory, rife with its share of historical inaccuracies, Log Cabin Excavation Unearths Evidence of Forgotten Black Community, Ruins of Eighth-Century Pagan Temple Found in Norway, When Catherine of Aragon Led England's Armies to Victory Over Scotland, From a Zebrafish to Nylon Stockings, See This Year's Small World Photography Winners, NOAA Predicts Droughts Gripping Nearly Half of Continental U.S. Will Intensify This Winter, Well-Preserved Brain Cells Found in Vesuvius Victim, Scientists Cloned an Endangered Wild Horse Using the Decades-Old Frozen Cells of a Stallion, Long Before Trees Overtook the Land, Earth Was Covered by Giant Mushrooms, New Project Aims to Revive Ozark Cuisine Through Seeds, The True Story of 'The Trial of the Chicago 7', Bird Flies 7,500 Miles, a New Record for Longest Nonstop Bird Migration, A T. Rex Sold for $31.8 Million, and Paleontologists Are Worried, The So-Called 'Kidnapping Club' Featured Cops Selling Free Black New Yorkers Into Slavery, Nero, History's Most Despised Emperor, Gets a Makeover. Cookie Policy From Canadian to Kingsville, Harvey Houses provided food and service in refined, Fred Harvey fashion to train travelers as well as citizens of the community. Bread was baked on-site and sliced three-eights of an inch thick; orange juice was squeezed fresh only after it was ordered; alkali levels of the water were tested to ensure high-quality brewed coffee; menus were carefully planned out so that passengers would have a variety of foods to select from along their travels. Researchers, educators, and students may find this photograph useful in their work. And as if the poor food selection wasn’t bad enough, travelers were often taken advantage of by unscrupulous business owners who gouged customers with high prices, made them pay for the food upfront, then timed it so the diner had to re-board the train before they could eat it. The Harvey Girls were held to high standards as the primary contact between the customer and the company. Descriptive information to help identify this photograph. You saved the day. The advertisements called for "young women 18 to 30 years of age, of good character, attractive and intelligent, as waitresses in Harvey Eating Houses on the Santa Fe Railroad in the West." Here, English-born entrepreneur Fred Harvey saw a chance to launch a business.

One must remember that the reputation of a Harvey House was important, and meticulous care was made in the staff they hired. Disgruntled word of mouth traveled quickly and sorely affected both the Santa Fe’s reputation and profits.

crediting Private Collection of Rosa Walston Latimer. Such dishes as whitefish filet with Madeira sauce, roast beef au jus, sugar-cured ham, and even lobster salad were served on fine china and linen tablecloths. After the team of waiters in the Raton, New Mexico, location were involved in a brawl, Harvey fired the lot and replace them with young women. By the late 1960s, Fred Harvey restaurants were no more and the waitresses who kept the train passengers fed were the image of a bygone America.

For railroad towns eking by on fried meat, canned beans and stale coffee, the Harvey House chain was nothing short of a godsend. In addition to previously unheard-of monetary benefits, the job profited women with pride and independence. They recognized a need to gauge how many passengers would come to dine when the train stopped. Yet he possessed great ambition and was not afraid to work hard. Users agree not to download, copy, modify, sell, lease, rent, reprint, or otherwise distribute these materials, or to link to these materials on another web site, without authorization of the Oklahoma Historical Society. The Portal to Texas History, Every step was taken to ensure that any female hired as a Harvey Girl had an exemplary character above anything else. Terms of Use Photograph of a staged Harvey Girl bedroom with a uniform displayed next to a dresser with a mirror on top, taken at the Brownwood, Texas Harvey House. We’re very glad you found that article and that it was of more use than general interest! Rescuing Texas History collects photographs, newspaper articles, letters, postcards, and other historical materials from across the state and beyond to document and preserve the rich history of the state.

The deal? Harvey took advantage of ice cars to transport highly perishable items—fruit, cheeses, ice cream, fresh fish—to the harsh environs of the southwest.


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