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Catalog Number WF 1778
Caption WPA Sewing group
Description This is a rare photo of women who worked at the Works Progress Administration (WPA) Sewing Room in Anacortes, located at 4th Street and Commercial Avenue, as well as a view of the interior of that room. The WPA was created in 1935 as part of President Franklin Roosevelt's "New Deal" legislation. The works program provided "minimal financial assistance to needy people who labored on beneficial community projects" from sewing rooms to making mattresses to highway construction -- and building such things as the Marine Stadium (amphitheater) located on Cap Sante in Anacortes. The WPA put a total of 8.5 million people to work on 1.4 million separate projects from 1935-1943. WPA sewing rooms were one of the few federal programs designed specifically for middle age and older women who lacked job experience, or physical stamina, to do other types of work. Note the piles of fabric and supplies on the shelves in the rear of the room. A "Hobby Shop" was also connected with the WPA sewing room in Anacortes. There, classes were given in various hobbies, through the WPA as part of the first national "Adult Education" programs. The aim was to keep unemployed workers occupied -- May 23, 1940 ANACORTES AMERICAN reported on local activities in honor of National WPA Week. On May 20, Anacortes marked WPA Week with a dinner in the Community Building (present-day City Hall at 6th Street and Q Avenue - 904 6th Street) attended by 200. After the dinner, participants listened to Eleanor Roosevelt address the nation about the work of the WPA. The Sewing Room and Hobby Shop held open houses in honor of the occasion. The group also participated in the Marineers' Pageant parade. See WF 1450. Woman at front left is Gladys Marie Van Horn Black, wife of Russell Black.
Date 1935/ c/ l
Photographer from the BRADY, Ferd collection
Collection Wallie Funk Collection
Subjects Place -Anacortes, WA

Credit line Donated by Wallie Funk, Wallie Funk Collection
People BLACK, Gladys Marie VAN HORN
Place Anacortes, WA
Search Terms Sewing group
Works Progress Administration
Sewing Room
New Deal
Cap Sante Marine Stadium
Hobby Shop
Adult Education
Object Name Print, Photographic