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Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis


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Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

JOBS FOR CRIPPLED SOLDIERS.
•
Movie Concern Offerm to Train Fifty at
Once to Becorne Operators.
Crippled soldiers who have lost a leg on
the battlefields of France are to be given
an opportunity to become moving picture
operators. Senator Fletcher. of Florida,
has received a letter from one of the big
movie concerns of the South making the
offer. Jobs are open at once for 50 onelegged soldiers. Later there will be a
chance for 50 more.
The concern is prepared to open schools
in any of the camps. From 60 to 90 days
are necessary tri learn the trade, and the
lobs Day f rn
tan
1110/1 & rettaLth.


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Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

I Beef Liver Pound
Cabbage

P
(

New York State

Lb. 3c

PECK
(15 lbs.)

BREA


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Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

Memorandum:

(Mrs. Edson)

Ethel R. Palmer macie report on motion
picture investigation September. 26th, 1916.

REPRESENTING EMPLOYERS

LOYALL A. OSBORNE
C. E. MICHAEL
W. H. VAN DERVOORT
B. L. WORDEN
F. C. HOOD


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REPRESENTING LABOR

FRANK P. WALSH
WILLIAM H. TAFT
JOINT CHAIRMEN

FRANK J. HAYES
WILLIAM L. HUTCHESON
THOMAS J. SAVAGE
VICTOR A. OLANDER
T. A. RICKERT

W. JETT LAUCK, SECRETARY

NATIONAL WAR LABOR BOARD
WASHINGTON
October 30.

Miss Mary Van Kleeck, Director,
Women in Industry Service,
Department of Labor,
Washington, D.O.

My dear Miss VanKleeck,
your request of October 25
In answer
I enclose herewith a memorandum 9x ared by one
of my staff on the Lasky Studio. case.
There is in our files no mention of
wotaen involved or of the possible substition of women for men in the projecting room of the studio.
Very -

er

y yours,

kb(

(---4-tr


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Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

bya .
Memazalum

Controvcrs;/ between Local # 33 I.A.T.S.E.
on
and The Lasky Studio of Famous ?layers- Lasky Co9ration,
Los Angelost Cal.

Original grievances about wages,hours p overtime,work#Ig
c,
-,alitions and all points of difference affecting other studios
as well as.The Lasky, were settlea before Aug. 27. No answer was
had from thesi studio and on that date 1^0 ,2mployes quit work.
After several attempts to settle on the main point as to haw
many and in what manner men should be re-instated it was determined that the two following points be submitted to the National
War Labor Boardtboth side s agreeing to abide by this decision;
1. Return of former employes to work who wer/employed prior
to August 28 191S.
2. Removal from position of Supt. of Construction, Mr. James
Souter.
Pending decision 50 employes were put back to work Sept. 24.
That the Lasky studio is an open shop is conceded but
contends
that the emnloysant of the new superintendent
the union
of conitruction will seriously endanger the percentage of organization that they have maintained because he has a record of
strie-breaking.
Firm contends that it does not a-Trove in general of
the standardization requested by the first wage demands of the
men, that it raised tie wages of all the competent employes and
was willing that the rest of the men seek"employment elsewhere"
us they had threatened to do in their original wage demand, that
they had the right to retain employes hired to replace strikers
and that they dould not break the*r contract with the new construction supt. who othey promise, will act under their orders
not to discriminate against the union.

•

R7,1PORT

GEITRAL
SITUATION

Theater
Owners'
Point of
View.


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or IDTIor PIcTnE OP'n'_TCS' SITUATION IN LOS ANGELES

At the instigation of the Theater Owners' Association of Southern California, Incorporated, comprising
about eighty per cent of all motion picture theatres
in Southern California, a school for the training of
women motion picture operators was started by one of
their members, Leo L. Hyan. This school is officially
endorsed and supported by the Theater Owners' Association.
At present there are enrolled about thirty-five studekts
in this school.
The reasons given by the Theater Owners for the
founding of this school are as follows:
1. A patriotic projection for the training
of dependent women of men in service to
earn their living.
2. Dissatisfaction with the type of work performed by union operators.
(a) '2,ecent fires due to carelessness on
part of operators.
(b) Inexperienced men being supplied to
theaters by union because of shortage
caused by draft.
instance of lack of operators
concrete
:Co
cou_d be found.
Before operating a machine the City of Los Angeles
demands that an examination given by the Electrical
Department be passed before a license is issued.
This examination previously consisted of an oral interview. At present there has been a complete change in
the type of examination held. A written series of
Questions is asked, also a Practical test in a booth
with a skilled operator is given. So far ten women
from the school in question have taken this examination.
All of whom have nassed the written but no license has
as yet been issued to a woman as they have all failed
in the practical test. It is claimed by the Theater
Owners that a union man has been in the booth to 2';ve
this practidal test, wires have been grounded making
such an examination unsafe, and unfair tests and reouire—ents have been made. Er. Beecher of the 7.1ectrical Denartment who is in charge of the examinations,
stated that so far the women have been only theoretically trained and not T)ractically; that the department
is a'osolutely willing to r,rant licenses to women when
women are efficient.

4

JO=

At the time this school of the Theater Owners
was orzanized the enclosed contract (copy) was presented to all theater owners who employed union men.
This contract is signed by most of the theater owners
but is aprarently not being lived pp to by them, nor
has the alternative been enforced by the union.
Undoubtedly this contract discriminates against mmen,
and according to Er. Dale, a local A. F. of L. representative, the Operators Union wo-ild not be upheld
from that point of view.
The attitude of the local Motion Picture
Operators' Union was given in a talk with hr. Preston,
Business _ailaier, and is as follows:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.

•

(11.11

k.

iL1.112:.1D TO


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Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

Ho immediate need for women operators.
Many qualified male operators without
positions.
Fear that women will lower scale of -7a:es.
Uill admit women into Union after -being
licensed.
The occupation is a hazardous one and not
considered healthful one for women.

The reneral situation can best be summed up as a
fight between the Theater Owners' Association and
Union Operators. The Union says it is to break them
that the school was started.
Theater Owners say that
women would make better operators than a union man.

Wages. The Union scale
cally all the motion picture
30 per week depending on
to
owners state that same scale
the women.

of wages controls practihouses, ranging from :;16.50
the t:Tme of house. Theater
of -Jaes will
-oaid to

Hours. The Union will permit no operator to wcr'
lon;-;er than six hours without one hour relief. There
is a six hour day standard in vaudeville and larger
houses, eiht hor day standard in smaller houses.
standards of Labor and Health Hazards. The
standard ])rojecting room is a fire-proof booth. All
films in booth are kept in a fire -proof box. Fires are
mainly caused by smoking of operators, which
.is against
a City Ordinance, and running the film
too slowly
through the machine. Operators
say that small burns
are practically unavoidable. The accident rate for
insurance for operators as given by the Pacific Mutual
Insurance Company is two and one-half times a ,)referred
risk.


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Ventilation is obtained by an air shaft at the
top of the booth and a71 electric fan. Despite this
the booths are hot and close and colds are often
contracted by the operator after leaving booth for
open air.
The mot serious health menace lc that of the
carbon ash. This ash is composed of small particles
of burnt carbon from the lamp. The ash circulates
in the booth and even in the hono -,rorer. OL,,rbon
::ono::ide is jenerated which mai:es for a vicious atz.ocphere and is directly injurious to th_ health of the
operator. A full report of this condition has been
made by the 3ureau of Tuberculosis of the State Board
of Health (this report is not as yet in c irculation
but will be mailed as soon as it ca# be obtained).
There seems to be no immediate
:Teed of ':iomon.
need Jor women o-perators. :To theater miner has complained of being unable to get operators, though many
say that t.Le standard of men is not as high as it
previously had been. As a general rule the men in
this occupation are young men and within the draft
age, but since the motion picture industry has been
classed as essential there will be in the future
operators needed to take the places of the men drafted.
This is a skilled occupation and -bakes anywhere from
one month to three months of training, depending upon
nrevious experience. It reouiros florou .21 electrical
.nowledge as Jell as 1;ractical experience in order to
Jecome a skilled operator. Undoubtedly women who are
mechanically inclined, properly trained and aressed,
(shirt, cep and trousers) could be as efficient s men.
It is an occunation depending on individual iniative,
skill and beneral ability.

-•••-nnwomm.”•.•••••iimmr.•••••••-",,

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day of

THI6 ':11/2..:EITT made and enterej '_nto this
1916, by and between

a motion 'icure exhi,itor in the City of Los Angeles, County of
Los Angeles, ",;tate of Canifornia, party of the first )art, and
the ::oving Picture and :rojecting :=achi.Le CPerators Local 2o. 150,
International Alliance of Theatrical Stage 317ployees of the United
StrAes

dCanr,An„ party of the second -oart,

-7 the first

is engaged in giving

regular moving -L icture exhibitiorr for - aid admissions in said
e o
Ci f

,skilled motion
os Angeles, and. is desirous of securini

picture machine operators, and in 21avirc; the assurance that such
skilled and dependable operators are at all times avdLlable for
such exhibitions; and,
JKa_nL, a ruling has been made by the Provost 1:arshall
of the United States that the motion Picture industry, and all
skilled labor employed in connection therewith, are essential,
and that motion picture machine operators are classed as skilled
mechanics and employed in an essential industry within the meaning of said ruling; and
THERSAS, party of the second part is composed of men skilled.
and experienced in the operation of motion picture machines and
the electrical and other work in connection therewith, and desire
to place it.; Lombe2s in .-perl_anent positions at an agreed standard
of compensation.
IT IS TI=201 1:UTU.ILLY COVii

D JiD A21IED that in

consideration of the premises, and the mutual benefits accruing
and to accrue to the respective -2,arties hereto, that said party
of tilleftmaa444.D.Arti-44z tg-l'uraish..to-xat.v.arty, upon
•

able notice, such skilled motion picture machine operators as
said first party may from time to time reouire.


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Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

And said first


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Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

party agrees to employ only the skilled and licensed ::Aotion
picture

achine operators

ihich comprise the n:emLors, ip of,

and are tarnished by said second party.
Said first party further agrees lot to srrport :or encourage any school for the instruction of women or :Arls in
the operation of motion picture machines, nor employ women or
girl machine operators so long as sec,nd parties' membership
are classed by the United States Government as employees of an
essential industry.
It is further distinctly understood and agreed between the
parties hereto that should party of the first part violate any
of the terns or conditions of this contract, that second party
shall have the right to withdraw any of its rembers employed in
the establishment of first party upon giving twenty-four hours
notice to said :irst Party.
if

1SS 71=0F, the party of thtt fir s-u

rtey-

La

nere-

unto affixed his hand and seal, and the party of the second rart
has, pursuant to a resolution duly passed by its executive board,
authorized its president and secretary to execute the foregoing
contract as of the day and year first above written.
Party of the First tart
MOVIEG PICTU_T] '1TD PRCJIIICTING OPRATOS LOCUJ ro. 150, l.A. o_
T. S. I. of the United States and
Canada.
Ey
President
2y
Secretary

WAGE SCALE AND CLASSIFICATION OF THEATRES IN THE
JURISDICTION OF LOCAL NO. 150, I. A. T. S. E.
Class AA. Moving Picure Theatres, with a capacity of 1500 or more, charging 10 cents or more admission. Head operator to work 6 hours per day; salary,
$30.00 per week; all overtime 75 cents per hour; all fractions of an hour over 20
minutes to constitute an hour. Relief man not to work over 6 hours per day;
A cents per hour; overtime same as head operator.
salary, 71,
Class A. Recognized vaudeville or other theatres using scenery, stage lights
and one or more stage hands, and giving regular afternoon and evening performances, not continuously, and not to exceed 6 hours per day; salary, $30.00 per
week; overtime, 75 cents per hour; all fractions of an hour over 30 minutes to
constitute an hour.
Coninuous vaudeville or other theatres using scenery, stage lights and one or
more stage hands. Head operator to work not over 6 hours per day; salary,
$30.00 per week; overtime, 75 cents per hour; all fractions of an hour over 20
minutes to constitute an hour. Relief man to receive 712 cents per hour; overtime same as head operator.
All Class A theatres are entiled to one rehearsal each week without exra cost;
rehearsal not to last over 2% hours.
Class BB. Moving Picture Theatres, between 500 to 1500 seats. Head operator
to work not over 8 hours per day; salary, $25.00 per week; all overtime 60 cents
per hour; all fractions of an hour over 20 minutes to constitute an hour. Relief
man shall receive 42 cents per hour; overtime same as head operator.
Class B. Moving Picture Theatres with less than 500 seats. Head operator
to work not more than 8 hours per day; salary, $22.50 per week; overtime 50 cents
per hour; all fractions of an hour over 20 minutes to constitute an hour. Relief
man to receive 38 cents per hour; overtime same as head operator.
Classes AA, A, BB or B, do not include an ysuburban theatre in the limits of
Los Angeles.
Class C. Moving Picture Theartes, other than those included in Clasess AA,
A, BB or B, giving regular afternoon and evening performances, not continuously,
said performances not to last over 3/2 hours a wee. Salary, $22.50 per week; all
overtime 50 cents per hour; all froctions of an hour over 20 minutes to constitute
an hour.
Class D. Moving Picture Theatres, other than those in Classes AA, A, BB
2 hours
or B, giving evening performances only, performances not to last over 3/
2
a piece. Salary, $16.50 per week. Extra matinee performances not to exceed 3/
hours each, $1.50 per matinee. If more than 3 matinees are run in any one week
the salary to be the same as Class C theatres. All overtime to be paid at the rate
of 50 cents per hour; all fractions of an hour over 20 minutes to constitute an
hour. Class E. Motion Picture Studios. Operators not to work more than 8 hours
per day, and 6 days per week; salary, $25.00 per week. All overtime to be paid at
the rate of 75 cents per hour; Sunday work to be classified as overtime; all fractions of an hour over 20 minutes to constitute an hour.
Class E. Operators working for special exhibitions, such as convetnions,
fairs, commercial, church or school exhibitions. Salary at the rate of $32.00 per
week. Operator not to work more than 7 hours per day.
Class G. Special entertainments, where machine must be set up and taken
- down. Salary, $7.00 per day. Entertainments, or night performances, where machine is already installed, and performance not to last more than PA hours.
Salary, $4.00 per performance. Operator shall not be required to transport
machine to or from job.
Any theatre or theatres not covered in the above classification, the Executive
Board shall have the power to make a scale for such theatre or theatres.
No operator will be permitted to work more than 6 hours without at least a
one-hour relief.

Endorsed by th I. A. T. S. E. of U. S. & C.,
M. A. GARNEY, General Secretary

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Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

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Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

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Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

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Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

7<%-e/ 4AA-tiee,ciL vr4Ad,
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7.1 -770raniAm: referring to the employment of women as operatore of moving
picture projecting machines.
I.

No insurmountable difficulties presented by thi3 type of ‘,ork.
A.

Necessity of mechinical knowledge.
1. Lacked by majority of women.

B.

Impossibility of division of lnbor.
1. Women must learn all processes.

C.

Possibility of Attaining the needed mechanical skill.
1. Experience of Great Britain xith the women munition workers.

D.

Specill knowledge re,uired to me,rt the needs of this trade.
repair.
1. To keep actual machin ry of the projecting apparatus in
2. To menl film quickly ani neatly.
3. To understand th,,J principles of optical projection enough to obtain
a cleAr picture.
4. To uni-rstAnd thoroughly electrical currents and more simple electrical wiring.

II.

Difficulties presented .py hours of labor.

A.

Involves night work.
p. m.
1. Usual performances lasting every night till 11.00
a. In large theaters alternation of operators would give part
time off, showing possibility of night work only every other night.

B.

Involves, certainly in the larger cities, Sunday work.
1. Alternation of operators, again, would nodify this conlition.

C.


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Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

Consideration of Act,m1 number of hours in workinP. day.
1. Ten hour iqj easily obtainable.
a. Two hours in a. m. for inspection of film.
b. Eight hours for afternoon and evening performance.
oW
e,
2. Eight hour obtainable except in a case of continous performanc
operators
two
alternate.
hen
:
,
m.),
(11.00 A. M. to 11.00 p.

2.

III. Consideration of question of health and safety.
A.

Construction of booth tends to create unheathful conditions.
I. Necessity of fire proof construction.
a. Ventillation by air flue.
a. Necessity of darkness.

B.

Physical strain involved.
1. Almost continuous standing.
2. Eye strain, in focusing pictures.
3. No strain on the muscles through,
a. Liftilrhetivy weights
b. Cramped posture
c. Over reaching.

C.

Highly inflammable character of films.
1. Guarded against now by State laws and fire insurance rules.

IV.

Consideration of attitude of Lahor Unions.
4.
Men operators, at the present time, have well organized ani active
union.
B.
No available information as to attitude toard the adimittance
of 'vomen to this field.

Consideration of the possibility of .using ,kounded men in this work to a
V.
better advantage.

A li -t of material froT '.hich useful con3lusioni c'ur. be drwin, is
appended.

As far as my work has gone, I hive founi no material bearing di—

rectly on the points in que3tion.
been employed in such a capacity.


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Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

There is no record of any woman h9ving

AVAILABLE MATERIAL
I.

None iealing iirectly with this s'ibject.
That dealin; with the moving picture blsiness.
"A)tion ricture theater", American School of Correspondence,
k.
Chicago, Ill., 1911.
";:totion picture operation", Horstmann and Tousley, Drake & Co.
B.
Chicago, Ill., 1917.
"Picture theater facta", Hodges, J. F., Scenario Publishing
C.
Co., New York City, 1912.
"Motion picture handbook", Richardson, F. H., Lioving Picture
D.
World, New York City, 1916.

III. Th-tt dealing with women in trades reguiring mechanical skill.


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Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

A.
Great Britain, l!inistry of munitiona, "Health of munition
lorkers committee, memorandum no. 4, 1916, Employment of women."
"Women in modern industry", Hutchins, B. L., G. Bell & sons,
B.
London, 1915.
"Woman's aork in war time", Bullard, W. I., Merchants National
C.
Bank, Boston, 1917.
Ireat Britain, Vinistry cf munitions, Healt=t of munition workers
D.
committee, "Health of the munition worker."

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