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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • YOU MEAN A WOMAN CAN OPEN IT?

Light Lunch: 1902

Light Lunch: 1902

Circa 1902. "Window in girls' restaurant, National Cash Register Co., Dayton, Ohio." 8x10 inch glass negative by William Henry Jackson. View full size.

 

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Having Worked There

At NCR during college here in Dayton, I can tell you, I got to know the history a little.

These girls were most likely office girls, or floor girls who worked in the compiling area (piecing together small parts that required delicate hands)but they were always nicely dressed. Patterson and Kettering were ahead of their time as far as employers of women.

Both men made it a company policy to make sure the women all wore uniformity clothing that was clean and attractive.

Some of my wife's relatives worked there and she always said what a great place it was to work in.

Patterson took care of his employees.

It's a Matter of Perspective

In reality, the width of that window is a "normal" 36 inches. It just looks huge because the women are about 20 inches tall.

Well lit light lunch

The girls in the picture are wearing aprons. They were probably restaurant staff recruited to pose for the picture. With a little skill, the final image can be rendered with an unsullied floor and NCR will have a model scene of the girls' restaurant.

Having 2 sashes moving up and down vertically

That is a huge double hung window.

Indeed

Very light lunch indeed.

Familiar

JUST like our lunch room here at work, except for the nice china, the silver cutlery, the linen table cloth, the attractive service dishes, the plant on the table, the well-dressed staff. Oh, yeah, and the view out of the building. ANY view out of the building. Other than that, just the same.

An invitation for bugs and birds of all shapes and sizes

That is one huge sash window!

Immaculate Linens

But very messy floor.

Dirty floor

But very clean table.

Girls Restaurant?

I'm curious -- what is the "girls' restaurant"? Was it a restaurant at NCR reserved for women? I tried Googling for an answer but all I got was more references to this picture.

[Lunch room for women NCR employees. "Girls' restaurant" comes from the original Detroit Photographic Co. caption. -tterrace]

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