Tobacco Bag Stringing

Report on Tobacco Bag Stringing Operations in North Carolina and Virginia, 1939


ORANGE COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WELFARE

W. T. MATTAX
SUPT. PUBLIC WELFARE
HILLSBORO, N. C.

Chase Bag Company,
New York, N. Y.

Attention Mr. Sheldon:

Dear Sir:

Mr. Richardson has requested that I forward you letters I have pertaining to the possibility of discontinuing the stringing of bags in the homes and the effect it will have on the Welfare Department in the event this work is stopped.

This stringing agency was started three years ago to help people who had a small income but not quite enough to exist. Without help from somewhere these are tenant farmers, part-time housekeepers, laundresses and older person living with married and son-in-laws whose income is not enough to keep their own families, in fact no person I have stringing bags (and I have about four hundred) could possibly compete with laborers in public work as most of them are unable to do public work but can do this kind of work.

I can remember thirty years ago my grandmother and most of the people in the neighborhood strung and tagged bags in their homes.

This is not a sweat shop business but part-time labor done mostly at night while gathered around the family circle, the same as fancy work or old-time quiltings, and if taken out of the homes it would work quite a hardship on these people as it could not be replaced.

I hope you will have success in continuing this work as it has been done for forty or fifty years.

I am

Yours truly,

(Signed) O. L. CRABTREE, Chairman


[Source: "Tobacco Bag Stringing Operations in North Carolina and Virginia." Richmond, Va.: 1939. North Carolina Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.]