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Read The Journal of Negro History Volume IV Part 53

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CHARLESTON, S. C., April 27, 1917.

_Dear Sir:_ i was told by Mr. —- —- to rite you for one of cards as he say you got a lot of work to do in a brick yard and i am a hard working man i want to work and will work at any thing that pays so i rite to you for one of your blank so i can fill it out i dont care how soon i can get there and go to work there is no work here that pays a man to stay here so please send blank as soon as you can. Hoping to here from you soon.

SAVANNAH, GA., April 29, 1917.

_Dear sir:_ I receive your letter and glad to hear from you, the reason why i wanted to come up there is for more wages, i am a man with family and works hard, but dont get sufficient wages to support my family. i does any kind of ordinary hard work such as farming or teamster or most anything, i would like to no what kind of work you got up there to do as i fell satisfied that i could please you, and also state your price that you pay, and if this application is satisfactory why ans and i am willing to come right way.

_Dear Sir:_ After reading a very interesting letter of Miss–, it affords me great interest to ask you for some information in regards to employment in Connecticut and to eliminate some writing and get the right understanding. I will ask you to please furnish me with an application form and in the mean time I may receive all information that you may give. Also please if you cannot get me employment in Connecticut, write me if there are any openings in New Jersey or New York. I am very anxious to leave the south as there are no chances of jobs here worth while.

I have a recommendation as machine helper which I can send if required.

Hoping to have an interview as early as possible.

SAVANNAH, GA., May 1, 1917.

_Dear Sir:_ In seeing your advertis.e.m.e.nt in reference to securing a position for those desiring, I decided to take advantage of this opportunity as I desire better wages to meet the present high cost of living.

Hoping to hear from you at once in reference to the above request.

FORT GAINES, GA., Oct. 9, 1916.

_Dear Sir:_ Replying to your letter dates Oct. 6th the situation here is this: Heavy rains and Boll weavel has caused a loss of about 9,000 bales of cotton which together with seed at the prevailing high prices would have brought $900,000.00 the average crop here being 11,000 bales, but this years’ crop was exceptionally fine and abundant and promised good yeald until the two calamities. .h.i.t us.

Now the farmer is going to see that his personal losses are minimised as far as possible and this has left the average farm laborer with nothing to start out with to make a crop for next year, n.o.body wants to carry him till next fall, he might make peanuts and might not, so taking it alround, he wants to migrate to where he can see a chance to get work.

I have carpenters, one brick mason, blacksmith, etc., wanting to leave here, can send you their names if definate proposition is held out.

HOUSTON, TEX., 2-25-17.

_Dear Sir:_ Would you please to be so kind to advise us on what condition to get in tuch with some club on micration movement we have 1000 of idle people here and good working people would be trully glad to except of that good oppertunity of coming north and work. Now please give us the full detales of the movingment so we can get to gether now please advise right away of the main headquarters of the club for we are ready for business just as soon as we can get a understanding from the main club for we have lots of people in Tex. want to no direct about it and want to go.

We take your paper in this citey and your paper was all we had to go by so we are depending on you for farther advise. Dear editor you muss excuse our bad letter for we rote it in a hurry.

KEATCHIE, LA., 12/8/16.

_Dear Sir:_ I have been reading in the Union-Review and other papers about the work of your department and I am writing to you for some information. I would like to know about general conditions, as to wages, cost of living, living conditions etc.

Also as to persons of color adopting themselves to the northern climate, having been reared in the south. This information would be much appreciated and would be also of much interest to not only the writer of this letter but to many more. Many books would be written dealing with conditions here in regard to the Negro.

Compared with other things to which we have almost become resigned, the high cost of living coupled with unreasonably low wages is of greatest concern. We have learned to combat with more or less success other conditions, but thousands of us can bearly keep body and soul together with wages 60, 75 and $1.00 and meat at 19, flour $10 and $12 per bbl and everything else according.

LIVE OAK, FLA., Feb. 12, 1917.

_Dare Sire:_ Replying to youse some times ago were reseav an was glad to here from you so please let me no how is bisness up nourth and cod I get a job as I wont to go nourth as we dont get half pay for our wourk down here so please let me here from you an can I get a persistion in youre city.

SAVANNAH, GA., May 1, 1917.

_Dear Sir:_ I write you to let you know that I am out of employment as jobs are very hard to find down here and I would like to have a job in your firm in N.Y. as I have relatives there I can pack tobacco and I would like very much to work in your firm in N.Y. or Conn. and I would like for you to send me a ticket as soon as possible.

LITTLE ROCK, ARK., 5/2/17.

_Der Sir:_ It affordes me much pleasure to write to you a few lines in regardes of a posision sir i were reared in the state of ill. your home state, but have been here for eight years working as a helper in a blacksmith shop and have been taking the Defender regular for a long time so i have decided to come back to my home state once more where i can get better pay so o will ask you to please help me in getting a good job. i wont to learn the molders trade or some good trade that i can make more than i am making here. i am a Christian and have been for 20 years. am a member of the first Baptist Church here an a member of the United Brethren of Odd Fellows and is in good standing. now please a.s.sist me just as soon as possible i am ready to come up just as soon as i get a hearing from you. Please look after it for me at once if you can not get me a job in your town, I will go anny place you send me.

JACKSON, MISS., April 20, 1917.

_Sir:_ i wants to know do yo want somme famlis to move up their if you do rite and let me no at once and i will get yo some at once to come up their to work for you if you do rite an let me no at once and i will get them. now write an let me no at once send me work an i will try to bill your wont if you will aide me to get them up their i can get all that yo wont here to come up their and will come if they had any way to comt i wont to come but the times is so harde that i cant make the money to come on i want to move up their at once if i hade some way to come i wod come at once.

CHARLESTON, S.C., April 29, 1917.

_dear sir:_ I found your address by Mr. —- —- kindness. I wrote him a letter concerning of a just a half of chance and any kind of a job will do just so I am out of this part of the country. Now here is my lines of work. I am a first cla.s.s clothes cleaner and presser, can operate any kind of clothes pressing machine. I have got reference to show that I am good in that line from Mr. —-, a member of our city. I am a waiter european or american, alicout or short order, and I am bell hop and knows the rules of a hotel. I am lawfully married and has no children. My wife and myself are both from Augusta, Ga. but I am working down here but I dont like it, I am just barely making a living and thats all. Now my wife can work too. She can cook, nurse and do house work, I simply make a distintion about my home being in Augusta Ga for this reason, some Charlestonians speaks such bad language. Now please do the best you can for me and let me hear from you as soon, as possible and let me know your terms. I am ready. Good-by.

HAWKINSVILLE, GA., Apr. 16, 1917.

_My dear friends:_ I writen you some time ago and never received any answer at all. I just was thinking why that I have not. I writen you for employ on a farm or any kind of work that you can give me to do I am willing to do most any thing that you want me to so dear friends if you just pleas send ticket for me I will come up thear just as soon as I receives it I want to come to the north so bad tell I really dont no what to do. I am a good worker a young boy age of 23. The reason why I want to come north is why that the people dont pay enough for the labor that a man can do down here so please let me no what can you do for me just as soon as you can I will pay you for the ticket and all so enything on your money that you put in the ticket for me, and send any kind of contrak that you send me.

HOUSTON, TEX., 4-29-17.

_Dear Sir:_ I am a constant reader of the “Chicago Defender” and in your last issue I saw a want ad that appealed to me. I am a Negro, age 37, and am an all round foundry man. I am a cone maker by trade having had about 10 years experience at the buisness, and hold good references from several shops, in which I have been employed. I have worked at various shops and I have always been able to make good. It is hard for a black man to hold a job here, as prejudice is very strong. I have never been discharged on account of dissatisfaction with my work, but I have been “let out” on account of my color. I am a good bra.s.smelter but i prefer core making as it is my trade. I have a family and am anxious to leave here, but have not the means, and as wages are not much here, it is very hard to save enough to get away with. If you know of any firms that are in need of a core maker and whom you think would send me transportation, I would be pleased to be put in touch with them and I a.s.sure you that effort would be appreciated. I am a core maker but I am willing to do any honest work. All I want is to get away from here. I am writing you and I believe you can and will help me. If any one will send transportation, I will arrange or agree to have it taken out of my salary untill full amount of fare is paid. I also know of several good fdry. men here who would leave in a minute, if there only was a way arranged for them to leave, and they are men whom I know personally to be experienced men. I hope that you will give this your immediate attention as I am anxious to get busy and be on my way. I am ready to start at any time, and would be pleased to hear something favorable.

CHARLESTON, S. C., April 29, 1917.

_Kind Sir:_ Read your adv. in the Chicago Defender. I would like very much to have you take me in consideration. I am strong and ambitious. Would work under any conditions to get away from this place for I am working and throwing away my valuable time for nothing. Kindly let me hear from you at your earliest.

NEW ORLEANS, LA., June 10, 1917.

_Kind Sir:_ I read and hear daly of the great chance that a colored parson has in Chicago of making a living with all the priveleg that the whites have and it mak me the most ankious to want to go where I may be able to make a liveing for my self.

When you read this you will think it bery strange that being only my self to support that it is so hard, but it is so. everything is gone up but the poor colerd peple wages. I have made sevle afford to leave and come to Chicago where I hear that times is good for us but owing to femail wekness has made it a perfect failure. I am a widow for 9 years. I have very pore learning altho it would not make much diffrent if I would be throughly edacated for I could not get any better work to do, such as house work, washing and ironing and all such work that are injering to a woman with femail wekness and they pay so little for so hard work that it is just enough to pay room rent and a little some thing to eat. I have found a very good remady that I really feeling to belive would cure me if I only could make enough money to keep up my madison and I dont think that I will ever be able to do that down hear for the time is getting worse evry day. I am going to ask if you peple hear could aid me in geting over her in Chicago and seeking out a position of some kind. I can also do plain sewing. Please good peple dont refuse to help me out in my trouble for I am in gret need of help G.o.d will bless you. I am going to do my very best after I get over here if G.o.d spair me to get work I will pay the expance back. Do try to do the best you can for me, with many thanks for so doing I will remain as ever,

Yours truly.

MCCOY, LA., April 16, 1917.

_Dear Editor:_ I have been takeing your wonderful paper and I have saved from the first I have received and my heart is upset night and day. I am praying every day to see some one that I may get a pa.s.s for me, my child and husband I have a daughter 17 who can work well and myself. please sir direct me to the place where I may be able to see the parties that I and my family whom have read the defender so much until they are anxious to come dear editor we are working people but we cant hardly live here I would say more but we are back in the jungles and we have to lie low but please sir answer and I pray you give me a homeward consilation as we havent money enough to pay our fairs.

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Published inThe Journal of Negro History