AMERICAN WOMEN AND THE WORLD WAR

BY

IDA CLYDE CLARKE

AUTHOR OF "RECORD NO. 33"

D. APPLETON AND COMPANY
NEW YORK LONDON
1918

 

A poor Scandinavian woman in Iowa cheerfully signed a food pledge card, believing it meant that the Government agents would confiscate her canned fruits and vegetables, and asking only for more time so that she could get more done for her country. To this patriotic, self-sacrificing woman, and to many, many other in quiet homes, far from the vast sweep of the world's tragic events, whose names do not appear in this or any other written record, I dedicate this book.

The purpose of this book is twofold: first, to discover to American women themselves their tremendous opportunities and responsibilities in the present world conflict; second, to record in a form that is in some degree permanent the actual beginnings of the greatest massed effort of women the world has ever known. History has not been attempted, because history has not yet been made; events of engaging interest, often of international import, follow each other with lightning-like rapidity, and scarcely seem a situation be described before one more vital, more interesting develops. But if this book shall serve as an inspiration, or shall form the groundwork of a future history of woman's part in the war, one of its chief purposes will have been accomplished.

I wish particularly to emphasize one fact. The basis of the story I have used of the work in the various states is the organization of the Woman's Committee of the Council of National Defense. In every state, the work of individual organizations has been of supreme value---the Federated Clubs, Daughters of the American Revolution, Young Women's Christian Association, Woman's Christian Temperance Union, Congress of Mothers and Parent-Teachers Association, Council of Jewish Women, National League for Woman's Service, and scores of other great organizations of women have worked intelligently, unceasingly, and to fine purpose, in every state. But in each case have sought information only from the State Chairman of the Woman's Committee of the Council of National Defense, because this Committee was appointed by the Council of National Defense, and was charged with the duty of coordinating the war work of existing organizations of women, and therefore its Authority and its province are not to be questioned. Where reports from the states seem to be brief or inadequate, it does not signify any lack of patriotism or enthusiasm either on the part of individual organizations or individual women. It usually means that, because of some uncontrollable local condition, organization of the Woman's Committee was delayed, or that the State Chairman was "too busy doing things to write about them."

The book was made possible because of the unfailing courtesy and the kindly personal interest of the officials of the Woman's Committee of the Council of National Defense and the Committee on Public Information, of which Mr. George Creel is Chairman and Mrs. Clara Sears Taylor Director, Division of Woman's War Work. These and other national centers of war activities in Washington were always open to me, and to them as well as to hundreds of women from Maine to California, I wish to make grateful acknowledgment.

As an American woman, I feel a sense of distinct pride, of high privilege, in presenting to the public this wonderful story---a story transcribed by me but written in golden deeds by twenty million loyal-hearted women in every state of our great American Union.

IDA CLYDE CLARKE


 

CONTENTS

PART I

I. INTRODUCTORY

II. THE WOMAN'S COMMITTEE CREATED

The creation of the Woman's Committee---Its purpose, as set forth by the Secretary of War---Its general plan of organization and operation---Some of its early activities

III. ORGANIZATION

The current of inspiration is turned on from the Woman's Committee at Washington---Wheels of organization begin to turn in the states---A model town---General plan of work adopted by Woman's Committee

IV. REGISTRATION

Registration of America's woman power begun by many private organizations---Confusion results---That taken by Woman's Committee recognized as official by Government---All organizations then cooperate for common good and work proceeds throughout the nation

V. FOOD CONSERVATION

Food production, food conservation and home economics---"Food will win the war," says Mr. Hoover--- Gigantic task is assigned to women---Back yard gardens yield crop valued at $350,000,000---Secretary Houston's appeal---Mr. Pack great work.

VI. CHILD WELFARE

Children's Bureau under Miss Julia Lathrop, General Federation of Women's Clubs and other organization intensify work in interest of Nation's children--- Women work to make Federal Child Labor Law effective---New department of Children's Bureau under Miss Abbott.

VII. HEALTH AND RECREATION

Moral and physical welfare of enlisted men the government B first consideration---Woman's Committee, Y. W. C. A., and other organizations assist Commission on Training Camp Activities---How women have helped in many states.

VIII. PATRIOTIC EDUCATION

Nation---wide plans are set on foot to include 3000,000 immigrant to attend night schools---"America First" Campaign launched---Women's organizations asked to help---Woman's Committee appoints Mrs. Catt Chairman of Education---Foreign women flock to night schools in Chicago, bringing their babies---Volunteer nurses called for.

IX. THE LIBERTY LOAN

More than 1,000,000 women subscribe in first sale of bonds---One-third of all Liberty Bond buyers are women---Remarkable campaign of organization and education conducted by Woman's Liberty Loan Committee, Mrs. McAdoo, Chairman.

X. WOMEN IN INDUSTRY

More than 2,000,000 of America's Women who work in factories deeply affected by war---Women's Labor Organization's work to maintain standards---National League for Woman's Service renders valuable aid--- Value of this work recognized by the Secretary of Labor---United States establishes employment agencies throughout the country---The Gompers Committee.

XI. THE RED CROSS

Woman's Bureau of the Red Cross---Its purposes and plans--- A general survey---Supply service and Bureau of Standards---Knitting, hospital garments, surgical dressings, comfort kits, etc.---Home service--- Volunteer aids---Work organized and canteens established in France---Junior Red Cross---School fund---Red Cross school activities---How to organize.

XII. THE RED CROSS NURSE

Some details of Red Cross work in which women are especially interested---Fields of opportunity suggested by Woman's Bureau---Nursing service---Emergency detachments---Town and country nursing---Instructions for knitting, comfort kits, hospital garments, etc.--- Home Service Institutes in twenty-five cities.

XIII. JUNIOR RED CROSS

The school fund---Red Cross school activities---Steps in organization---Infant Welfare Unit for France financed by American women---Children's Refuge---Children's Bureau undertakes great work in France.

XIV. NATIONAL LEAGUE FOR WOMAN'S SERVICE

America's largest and most remarkable war emergency organization---Its various departments and some details of its plans---With branches in every state this organization has far-reaching influence and is officially recognized.

XV. PERMANENT ORGANIZATION

How the great permanent organizations of women turned to war work---General Federation of Women' Clubs, Daughters of American Revolution, Colonial Dames, United Daughters of Confederacy, Council of Jewish Women, Y.W.C.A., Navy League, Congress of Mothers, etc.

 

PART II

STATE ORGANIZATIONS

XVI. ALABAMA, ARKANSAS AND ARIZONA

Alabama Women quickly perfect organization in every county---Work financed by voluntary contributions--- First activity was distribution of President's war message to men who enlisted---Governor proclaims Woman's Registration Day---Women's work in Arkansas and Arizona---Alaska furnishes inspiration to her sister states.

XVII. CALIFORNIA, COLORADO AND CONNECTICUT

Heads of all women's organizations form California's Central Committee---Cooperate with national and state defense work---Women share in $100,000 defense fund ---Colorado's organization unique---Women have equal representation on State Council---Connecticut furnishes example of perfect coordination and cooperation ---State Chairman gives story of work.

XVIII. DELAWARE, FLORIDA AND THE NATIONAL CAPITAL

War work in Delaware centers in Wilmington---In first month of war over 1,000 community gardens were planted---Outline of work done by women of national capital---Ladies of the Senate organize to sew for Red Cross---President's wife a contributor---Women set fine example to the Nation---Florida women follow suggestions from National Woman's Committee---Presidents of state organizations form Woman's Committee.

XIX. GEORGIA, IDAHO AND ILLINOIS

Remarkable work of Georgia women---Agricultural rallies prove effective---First Red Cross diet kitchen in South---Negro women work for negro soldiers---Idaho women get quick results in every undertaking---Society women pack prunes---Illinois fortunate in having many prominent women identified with defense work---Great work of women in Chicago.

XX. INDIANA, IOWA, KANSAS AND KENTUCKY

Registration first consideration of Indiana women--- Market exchange to be operated permanently---Interesting things happen in Iowa---Kansas organized along practical lines---Women of "Blue Grass States" among first to report perfect and active organization---Educational work a feature.

XXI. LOUISIANA, MICHIGAN AND OTHER STATES

Louisiana governor issues proclamation making registration of women compulsory---Defense work in Maine ---Existing organizations in Maryland form woman's committee---Results amazing---Admirable plan of organization adopted in Massachusetts---What Boston has done---Michigan women help save cherry crop---Wayside markets established---Lavish use of posters proved effective---Meals for soldiers.

XXII. MINNESOTA, MISSISSIPPI, MISSOURI, NEBRASKA AND NEVADA

Minnesota women cooperate with Public Safety Commission---Perfect coordination in Mississippi---Thirty women's organizations unite in war work---"One can for the Government" from every woman---Missouri adopts unique method of food conservation campaign---Woman's patriotic special train---What the women of Montana are doing---Nebraska early in the field with complete organization---Registration accomplished in one day---"Drying and Canning Week in Omaha---Nevada women have various activities.

XXIII. NEW HAMPSHIRE, NEW JERSEY AND NEW MEXICO

New Hampshire follows interesting plan of organization---State Chairman gives her residence as headquarters---New Jersey women initiate many novel forms of patriotic service---Canning centers in every community ---Markets opened all over the state---New Mexico furnishes a thrill to Mr. Hoover---Drying food not a "lost art" in that state.

XXIV. NEW YORK AND NORTH CAROLINA

New York State organizes early and plan of organization is interesting---Constructive work for maintaining home with present standards chief concern of state Committee---Mayor's Committee of City of New York and its great work---Suffrage organization makes valuable contribution to organization work---North Carolina's splendid record.

XXV. NORTH DAKOTA AND OHIO

W.C.T.U. and Suffrage Association initiate war work in North Dakota---Eighty towns completely organized ---Stirring letter from State Chairman---Work of women in cities of Ohio---How state defense work is organized---What women have done in Cincinnati, Cleveland and Toledo.

XXVI. OKLAHOMA, PENNSYLVANIA, OREGON AND RHODE ISLAND

Oklahoma women wide awake---Work to eliminate commercial waste ---Efforts in interest of families of enlisted men---Pennsylvania wonderful record in war work---Chester County model for the nation---Women' organizations in Oregon constitute Woman's Committee---Club women active---Rhode Island women distinguish themselves by taking military census.

XXVII. SOUTH CAROLINA AND OTHER STATES

What the South Carolina women have done---State thoroughly organized---Work in South Dakota difficult ---Women persist and work valiantly without funds--- Tennessee falls in line with all varieties of war work--- Utah women specialize on kitchen gardens---Texas women thoroughly organized under National League for Woman's Service ---War work in Vermont.

XXVIII. VIRGINIA, WISCONSIN, WASHINGTON, ETC

Personnel of Virginia Committee---National League for Woman's Service and Woman's Committee work effectively in Washington---D.A.R. and Suffrage Association in Wisconsin cooperate in Americanization---Vocational emergency education---Wyoming Woman's Committee encourages garden planting---Acreage increased 150 per cent.---Every county organized---Many things done in West Virginia---Every woman's organization cooperating.

 

PART III

WAR RELIEF ORGANIZATIONS

XXIX. THE FEDERAL COUNCIL

The Federal Council and some of its cooperating committees---National Allied Relief---Great bazaars of New York, Boston and Chicago---"Alley Festa" of 1917--- Fund for Fatherless Children and Munition Workers---International Reconstruction League---American Women's Hospitals---National Surgical Dressings Committee---American Women's War Relief---Stage Women's War Relief---American Ambulance, Millinery Branch---Statement about "Godmothering."

XXX. VACATION ASSOCIATION, NEEDLEWORK GUILD AND OTHER AGENCIES

Organization and growth of Vacation Association War Relief---Flotilla Committee and its wonderful work--- Militia of Mercy---Needlework Guild of America--- Committee for Men Blinded in Battle---Emergency Aid of Pennsylvania---Committee of Mercy and its contribution of over $2,000,000---Hudson River War Relief--- League of the Allies---League of Catholic Women--- Mercy Committee of New Jersey.

XXXI. SPECIAL AID SOCIETY AND WORK OF JEWISH WOMEN

National Special Aid Society---Trench Comforts Packet Committee---Artists' Committee of One Hundred--- White Cross Guard movement---Southern Women's Patriotic Committee---Physicians, Surgeons and Dentists' Fund---Council of Jewish Women and some of its cooperating organizations---Joint Distribution Committee of Fund for Jewish War Sufferers---Zionist organizations---Authors' League fund.

XXXII. RELIEF FOR BELGIUM

American relief work for Belgium---American Committee for War Charities of Queen of Belgium---Sou du Mutilé---Committee for Relief of Belgium---Prisoners in Germany---Oeuvre Belge du Lait pour les Petits---La Santé de l'Enfance---Mayfair War Relief---Millicent Sutherland Ambulance---King Albert's Civilian Hospital Fund.

XXXIII. RELIEF WORK IN FRANCE

American Women who have given generously of their time and means---What the American Canteen means to the soldiers---American Relief Clearing House---War Relief Clearing House for France and her Allies--- American Ambulance Hospital in Paris---Committee for Training Maimed Soldiers---Edith Wharton's war charities---Le Paquet du Soldat.

XXXIV. RELIEF FOR FRANCE

American Fund for French Wounded---Fund for Heroes of France and her Allies---French Heroes Fund ---Blind Relief Fund---Ecole des Beaux Arts---Union des Arts---Comité Franco---Américain---American Girls Aid---Fatherless Children of France---American Distributing Service---War Babies Cradle---Children's Fund for Kiddies' Kits---Relief for Liberated Villages of France.

XXXV. RELIEF FOR FRANCE

American Ice Flotilla Committee raised more than $100,000 in 1917---American Field Service in France--- Appui aux Artistes---Mrs. Stuyvesant raises more than $20,000 through "One Dollar Fund"---Duryea Relief---Franco-American Committee---American Branch French Actors' Fund---French Bureau---French Tuberculosis War Victims' Fund---Hospital Under Three Flags---Lafayette Fund---Le Bien-Etre du Blessé--- Secours de Guerre---Secours National.

XXXVI. RELIEF FOR GREAT BRITAIN

Relief work for Great Britain---British-American Relief Fund---Receipts amount to over $164,000---British War Relief Association---Chelsea War Refugees' Fund ---American Branch Lord Beresford's Fund---Lady Helmsley's Fund---London Motor Volunteer Corps--- American Auxiliary Woman's Health Association of Ireland---Shamrock Fund---Scottish Highlanders Relief Association---Queen of Roumania Fund---New England Italian War Relief.

XXXVII. RELIEF FOR POLAND AND RUSSIA

Poland's pathetic appeal---Madame Helena Paderewski joins her husband in relief for native land---Polish Central Relief---Americans seek to relieve distress in Russia---Lithuanian War Relief Committee---Armenian and Syrian Relief---Serbian Relief Committee.

 

PART IV

A DIRECTORY OF
LEADING WOMEN'S ORGANIZATIONS
DOING DEFENSE WORK

GENERAL OFFICES

Division of Women's War Work of the committee on public information--- Woman's Committee of the council of national defense---American Red Cross ---Bureau of nursing---Division directors of women's work---General federation of women's clubs---Daughters of the American Revolution---Women's Christian Temperance Union---Young Women's Christian Association: War Work Council---National Congress Of Mothers and Parent-Teachers' Association---Council of Jewish Women--- United States Employment Service.

STATE DIRECTORY

INDEX OF PROPER NAMES


Introduction