18-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today:
Friday, August 8, 1913: Nothing doing.
Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:
Since Grandma didn’t write much a hundred years ago today, I’m going to again go off on a tangent–
Women must have worried a lot back then about how to earn a little pin money (or in some cases more substantial amounts). Ladies Home Journal even had a column called “What Can I Do? where women could send in letters with money-making tips. This is how the magazine described the column:
The aim of this department is to show what can be done at home to use money by the use of special talents. The department is a sort of clearing house of information as to the kinds of work for which there is most demand, the conditions and chances of success, and the best ways of find a market.
A few days ago I shared tips in the magazine for making and selling Sun-Preserved Preserves. Here is another suggestion:
Tea for Motorists
I live in the country on a road where a great many autos pass every day, so I conceived the idea of opening a tea room. Having always on hand a supply of cream, butter and jellies my venture required no lavish outlay.
I first had an attractive sign painted and displayed in a conspicuous place on the roadside in front of the house. Next I arranged the tea table with my best china, and kept it in constant readiness, inspecting each article carefully every day.
One day a party of autoists knocked at my door and asked for tea. I ushered them into the tea room, and while they removed their veils, etc. I boiled the water, made thin bread-and-butter sandwiches, and arranged a little plate of tea cakes. For some time my patrons were few, but they increased in number as my reputation grew.
Ladies Home Journal (July, 1913)