Harvey Girl Historical Society

Originally trains in the West did not offer meal service, leaving the passengers to fend for themselves at mealtimes. This situation gave rise to exploitation, and passengers were soon victimized by poor food and high prices if they could find anything.

Fred Harvey decided there was a better way, and established a series of restaurants on the Santa Fe lines. Trains would stop, allowing passengers to get a good meal for a reasonable price in clean surroundings.

The Fred Harvey Company would recruit women via newspaper ads from towns and cities across the United States. The women had to be of good moral character, have at least an eighth grade education, display good manner and be neat and articulate to work in his restaurants. In return for employment, the Harvey Girls would agree to a six month contract, agree not to marry and abide by all company rules during the term of employment. If hired, they were given a rail pass to get to their Company chosen destination.

Harvey Girls were the women who brought respectability to the work of waitressing. They left the protection and poverty of home for the opportunity to travel and earn their own way in life while experiencing a bit of adventure.

The Harvey Girl Historical Society at OERM remembers these early women of railroading. If you are interested in the Harvey Girl Historical Society or are a former Harvey Girl, please call the museum at (951) 943-3020.

Link: www.harveyhouses.net

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March 7, 2015 - 21:44
Hop on board! The Easter Bunny makes a stop at Orange Empire Railway Museum the weekend of March 28 and 29 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Perris. Kids of all ages will experience the magic of trains and...
February 6, 2015 - 19:39
Photo by Jay P. Morgan
Bring friends and the entire family to celebrate the fantasy, history and ingenuity behind Steampunk on March 21 and 22 at the Orange Empire Railway Museum. The weekend features a Saturday...

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OERM 2015 Calendar

OERM 2014 CalendarThe Orange Empire 2015 Calendar  is now available. Photographs of the Los Angeles Railway and the Pacific Electric Railway in Los Angeles and the surrounding areas enhance each month.. The price is $12.95 each plus sales tax and shipping. To order your calendar call 951-943-3020 or e-mail info@oerm.org for more information.