The Call of the Twentieth Century An Address to Young Men

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We have no labor unions or organizations of any kind that could demand for us a uniform scale of wages for cooks, washerwomen, nurses, and the like; and, for another thing, if some negroes did here and there refuse to work for seven and eight and ten dollars a month, there would be hundreds of other negroes right on the spot ready to take their places and do the same work, or more, for the low wages that had been refused So that, the truth is, we have to work for little or nothing or become vagrants! Nor does this low rate of pay tend to make us efficient servants.

The most that can be said of us negro household servants in the South—and I speak as one of them—is that we are to the extent of our ability willing and faithful slaves. We do not cook according to scientific principles because we do not know anything about scientific principles. Most of our cooking is done by guesswork or by memory. But the point is, we do not go to cooking-schools nor to nurse-training schools and so it can not be expected that we should make as efficient servants without such training as we should make were such training provided And yet with our cooking and nursing, such as it is, the white folks seem to be satisfied—perfectly satisfied.

I sometimes wonder if this satisfaction is the outgrowth of the knowledge that more highly trained servants would be able to demand better pay! Perhaps some might say, if the poor pay is the only thing about which we have to complain, then the slavery in which we daily toil and struggle is not so bad after all.

I remember very well the first and last place from which I was dismissed. He must have been accustomed to undue familiarity with his servants, or else he took it as a matter of course, because without any love-making at all, soon after I was installed as cook, he walked up to me, threw his arms around me, and was in the act of kissing me, when I demanded to know what he meant, and shoved him away.

I at once went home, and told my husband about it. When my husband went to the man who had insulted me, the man cursed him, and slapped him, and—had him arrested! I was present at the hearing, and testified on oath to the insult offered me. The white man, of course, denied the charge.

I believe nearly all white men take, and expect to take, undue liberties with their colored female servants—not only the fathers, but in many cases the sons also.

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Those servants who rebel against such familiarity must either leave or expect a mighty hard time, if they stay. By comparison, those who tamely submit to these improper relations live in clover. This moral debasement is not at all times unknown to the white women in these homes. I know of more than one colored woman who was openly importuned by white women to become the mistresses of their white husbands, on the ground that they, the white wives, were afraid that, if their husbands did not associate with colored women, they would certainly do so with outside white women, and the white wives, for reasons which ought to be perfectly obvious, preferred to have their husbands do wrong with colored women in order to keep their husbands straight!

In most cases, to be sure, the colored women involved are the cooks or chambermaids or seamstresses, but it cannot be true that their real connection with the white men of the families is unknown to the white women of the families.

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The results of this concubinage can be seen in all of our colored churches and in all of our colored public schools in the South, for in most of our churches and schools the majority of the young men and women and boys and girls are light-skinned mulattoes. The real, Simon-pure, blue-gum, thick-lip, coalblack negro is passing away—certainly in the cities; and the fathers of the new generation of negroes are white men, while their mothers are unmarried colored women. No white person, not even the little children just learning to talk, no white person at the South ever thinks of addressing any negro man or woman as Mr.

Another thing. Sometimes I have gone on the street cars or the railroad trains with the white children, and, so long as I was in charge of the children, I could sit anywhere I desired, front or back. In my town, I know, and I guess in many other towns also, every night when the cook starts for her home she takes with her a pan or a plate of cold victuals.

The same thing is true on Sunday afternoons after dinner—and most cooks have nearly every Sunday afternoon off. The service pan is the mainstay in many a home. Some mechanics do; as for example, carpenters, brick masons, wheelwrights, blacksmiths, and the like.

The vast majority of negroes in my town are serving in menial capacities in homes, stores and offices. The chances are that they will have anywhere from five to thirteen children between them. And, I tell you, with all of us poor people the service pan is a great institution; it is a great help to us, as we wag along the weary way of life. And then most of the white folks expect their cooks to avail themselves of these perquisites; they allow it; they expect it.

20th century in literature - Wikipedia

Lease" holding a large rake, and an elderly woman wearing a crown labeled "Queen of Holland Dames," as well as one woman labeled "D. Anthony," "E. Cady Stanton," "Mrs. This political cartoon was created in by Laura Foster and shows her views towards suffrage. Suffragette Series No. They are all colored blue. Photograph shows men looking at material posted in the window of the National Anti-Suffrage Association headquarters; sign in window reads "Headquarters National Association Opposed to Woman Suffrage".

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Caricature of Frances "Fanny" Wright, British-born activist, exponent of female suffrage, and outspoken critic of slavery. The title's reference to Wright as a "gabbler" probably alludes to her sensational American lecture tour of Wright wears a black dress and long white scarf, and has the head of a goose. She stands reading from a book and gesturing, before a speaker's table with candles, pitcher, glass, and books.

Behind her stands a young man, holding her bonnet and looking on. Kemble's costume and the scene itself -- with its table, water, candles, and acolyte-like attendant -- seems intended to suggest an underlying parallel with liturgical rites.

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  • National Women's History Museum S. Whiting Street, Suite , Alexandria, Virginia National Women's History Museum. Opposition to Suffrage Anti-suffrage views dominated among men and women through the early twentieth century. I do not believe that women are better than men. We have not wrecked railroads, nor corrupted legislature, nor done many unholy things that men have done; but then we must remember that we have not had the chance. Jane Addams. National Association Opposed to Woman Suffrage.

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    By Allison Lange, Ph. Fall Essential Questions Where did formalized opposition to woman suffrage come from? How was woman suffrage a threat to society and culture?

    On the Twentieth Century

    How was opposition expressed? Documents, Objects, and Images. Apr 5, A suggestion to the Buffalo Exposition; - Let us have a chamber of female horrors. Library of Congress Illustration shows Uncle Sam and John Bull leading a group of world leaders walking in the center aisle between an exhibit of women suffragettes on pedestals; among the figures are "Mrs.

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