Tobacco Bag Stringing
Alice Howell

DICKMAN, MRS. ALICE, aged 40; widow; seven children; resides at 907 N. 24th Street, Richmond, Virginia. Children: Dorothy, aged 16, in school. Catherine, aged 14 in school. Frances, aged 11, in school. Elvira, aged 10, in school. Charles, aged 6, in school. Betty Ann, aged 3, at home.

INCOME: $65.00 per month relief money from City.

HOME CONDITIONS: She rents the upper flat of three rooms for $12.50 per month. Furnished very shabbily and sparsely, but kept orderly and clean. She earns about $6.00 per month from bag stringing, with which she pays all of her insurance amounting to $2.60. The rest is used for clothing for the children. She finds it difficult to keep the children in school supplies and carfare. She states that they have had to miss school several days because she has been unable to buy them the necessary supplies. She spends $40.00 per month in groceries but feels that it is insufficient to feed the children properly. She is absolutely dependent on the bag work, which never, she says, keeps her from her housework or child-caring. Other relief will be necessary if the bags are taken away, but will not be able to leave home to work because of the children.

[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.]