. Your post was sooo cool. Strict standards ensured that a Fred Harvey meal was consistent at each location. Fred Harvey, a transplanted Englishman, had been appalled a tthe food choices available for travelers as the West was being opened to settlers and tourists. By 1891, 15 Harvey House restaurants were in operation. His first depot restaurant opened in Topeka, Kansas, in 1876.
By 1891, 15 Harvey House restaurants were in operation. Though most of the original Harvey Houses and hotels are gone, a few survive. She fakes a background and references and chooses the least likely place imaginable to hide herself: working as a Harvey Girl in Newton, Kansas. Placing ads in Midwestern and Eastern publications, he solicited women between the ages of 18 and 30 to travel west and work as waitresses in his restaurants. At the peak, the number of Harvey House restaurants numbered in the eighties. This 19th-century image was popularized in a 1946 namesake movie, The Harvey Girls, starring Judy Garland. Mostly forgotten history of women in the West! As waitresses in Fred Harvey's chain of high-quality restaurants, the Harvey Girls made the Santa Fe very popular, and left an indelible mark on the Wild West.
Bread was baked on-site and sliced three-eights of an inch thick; orange juice was squeezed fresh only after it was ordered; alkali levels of the water were tested to ensure high-quality brewed coffee; menus were carefully planned out so that passengers would have a variety of foods to select from along their travels. They worked hard, but with dignity and a sense of purpose. The narrative is lively, conversational, and spiced with wry humor that will interest The U. Working with the nascent Santa Fe railway, he opened a lunchroom at the Florence, Kansas, train depot in 1878. The foundation for what would grow into a hospitality empire was laid. Thanks for the bibliography info! As waitresses in Fred Harvey's chain of high-quality restaurants, the Harvey Girls made the Santa Fe very popular, and left an indelible mark on the Wild West.
Working as a Harvey Girl was a demanding job, but one that offered women of the late 19th and early 20th centuries an opportunity to travel and earn good money. As approximately 5,000 of them married and raised families, eastern culture and civic improvement spread throughout Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, California, and eventually the rest of the states. Placing ads in Midwestern and Eastern publications, he solicited women between the ages of 18 and 30 to travel west and work as waitresses in his restaurants. Uniforms, fingernails, place settings, food lockers, and all facilities came under stringent regulations. Harvey negotiated with Santa Fe Railroad and built his first dining operation in a wooden depot in Topeka. The narrative is lively, conversational, and spiced with wry humor that will interest even reluctant readers. Roadhouses set up near the tracks offered limited fare of dubious quality and service ranging from indifferent to surly.
Although the book is apparently considered a children's book, I found it a pretty straight forward telling of the story of the women who worked as waitresses at the Harvey Houses - restaurants along the Santa Fe Railroad lines. Most dormitories had a courting parlor where gentlemen could call, plus a sewing room. As far as respectable society in the late 1800s was concerned, a woman working as a waitress was considered to be as reputable as a prostitute. So, thanks to your post, I'm completely fascinated---even days later. Bonnie Hansen as a Harvey Girl Bonnie Hansen recounts the story of Fred Harvey and his waitresses who helped to civilize the Wild West.
Many eventually married and ended their waitressing days - until the Second World War when many came out of retirement to help serve the thousands of troops who were moving across the country by train. Their legacy: Helping to make travel in the West a lot more enjoyable by serving tasty meals in pleasant surroundings and bringing a touch of graciousness to a mostly unsettled land. The waitresses even inspired poetry, such as the fllowing by Leiger Mitchell Hodges, published in 1905: I have viewed the noblest shrines in Italy, And gazed upon the richest mosques of Turkey— But the fairest of all sights, it seems to me, Was the Harvey Girl I saw in Albuquerque. A sociologist could not have invented a better method by which the West could become inhabited by so many young women anxious to take part in the building of a new region. John continues her visit with the Hoydens. The new hotel nearby reflects the style of the original. I've never heard of the Harvey Girls and wow, what a fantastic story premise.
New York: Random House, 2010. Waters, University of Kansas Press 9 Comments: said. You could write dozens of Harvey Girl romances and never run out of ideas! Although being a Harvey Girl was hard work, there were considerable benefits. The restaurants made a profit despite their devotion to quality food, generous portions, and elegant furnishings. I loved finding put about how it started and how young women who had few choices in this era helped create pockets of comfort and civilization along the rail route West. Thus began the adventure of a lifetime for lucky Victorian women who became the original Harvey Girls.
So glad you found the information interesting! He contracted with the Santa Fe to operate high quality restaurants, offering good food, good service and large portions. Women were screened with the same perfectionist methods. The girls were among the best paid and best dressed females in their towns. As the railroad charged across the west, little thought was given to the comfort of passengers. As waitresses in Fred Harvey's chain of high-quality restaurants, the Harvey Girls made the Santa Fe very popular, and left an indelible mark on the Wild West.
One of the jewels of the National Park Lodges, opened as a Harvey House in 1905. These were the women in the forefront of the law and order movements, improving safety and quality of life. As a freight agent in the 1870s Harvey spent enough time traveling via train in an era before dining cars to experience first-hand the difficulty of finding good food. When they did have free time, they rode the rails free, visiting family, or played softball. Not only were these women able to live and work independently, but they were able to save money, either to send home to family or to build a nest egg for themselves. If they left before the year was up—the most common reason for doing so was marriage—they forfeited a portion of their base pay.