Dress. In the 1920s, ladies wore dresses and shoes. It was part fashion, part cultural influence, but part practical necessity. And it worked, to a degree. Dresses were a necessary part of the daily lives of women, and women wore them even in the heat, in the rain, at work.
In the 1920s, all over America, there was a revolution occurring that was happening right under the skin. Women were not confined by their husbands, by their houses, by the church, by the school, by politics, by what they ate, what they wore.
And that was going to change the future of America.
So for women to go out, it was a necessity.
You know, my dear, what was a necessity was having a dress and a coat. And I don’t mean the kind of dress or the kind of coat you get from the ladies’ department. When I was going out, I was going to have a coat and a hat. And if I looked too thin or too fat I would feel bad. So, ladies, take a good coat. Women had to be confident, or I wouldn’t get out there.
And women had to not look like women, because they couldn’t do it.
“Women have an enormous influence on our nation,” said one young secretary at the Labor Department, who had been trained by the old rules.
I think that’s what women have accomplished since the beginning of the century.
What did you do once you started working there?
Well, there was an interesting career history of me. I was a secretary-treasurer in the Labor Department.
I was the most famous secretary-treasurer who worked for the Labor Department, for the last fifty to sixty years. The head secretary at the Labor Department was the most famous secretary-treasurer who worked for the United States government, but it was the most uninteresting job I did.
Now, it was good for me that way because I had a job that was very exciting.
If I had to go to a job in my office, I’d come out a little early and go to bed around 4:00 or 7:00 or 8:00, and get up at 9 or 10:30.
And in any other job I’d probably get up at 6:00 in the morning, go to work, and be bored until 10 o’clock
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