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LI3.3-M7
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
BULLETIN OF THE WOMEN’S BUREAU, No. 117

THE AGE FACTOR AS IT RELATES
TO WOMEN IN BUSINESS AND
THE PROFESSIONS

»

71

O' Hi




UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
FRANCES PERKINS, SECRETARY

WOMEN’S BUREAU
MARY ANDERSON, Director

BULLETIN

OF

THE

WOMEN’S

BUREAU,

No.

117

THE AGE FACTOR AS IT RELATES
TO WOMEN IN BUSINESS AND
THE PROFESSIONS
BY

HARRIET A. BYRNE

Ves oL

UNITED STATES
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE
WASHINGTON : 1934

For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, Washington, D.C.




Price 10 cents




CONTENTS
Letter of transmittal
Part I.-—Introduction
Purpose, scope, and method
Summary of facts
Part II.—Personal information
Section of country and size of citv
Age------------------ ---------------------- ----------------------------------------------------Discrimination against women because of age
8
Marital status____________________________________
g
Family responsibility_________________________________
Discrimination against married women. ’_____________________________
Health 11
Living arrangements 11
Experience 12
General education
12
Special training 13
Part III.—Employment experience 15
Industry and occupation 15
Occupation and size of city lg
Occupation and age lg
Work history 20
Method of securing position 21
Supervisory positions 22
Maximum general education 22
Relation between job and training.
___________________
Employment status______________________________
Employment status and age____________
___ ______________
Employment status and occupation.......... ...........
Employment status and maximum general education ..
Employment status and special training
______
Unemployment
26
Cause of latest unemployment.
Reason for leaving last job
Part IV.'—Year’s earnings
Earnings and employment status__________________________
Earnings and age 30
Earnings and experience 32
Earnings and marital status 34
Earnings and living arrangements:
Earnings and family responsibility'___________________________________
Earnings and general education 37
Earnings and special training 42
Earnings and stability_________________________
Earnings, industry, and occupation 45
Earnings and section of the country_____________
Clerical workers and teachers in various sections 56
Earnings and size of city 56
Maximum earnings_________________________________________________
Additional income 60
Ability to save 60
Worry about financial security 60
Anxiety as to losing position 60
Attitude toward old-age pensions 61
Case stories 61
Appendix.—Form of questionnaire 63

II

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3
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7

8
10

24
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25
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25
26
27
27
28
29

35
37
44
55
59

IV

CONTENTS
TEXT TABLES

1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
10.
11.
12.
13.
14.
15.
16.
17.
18.

Family responsibility, by age------------------------------------------------------------Maximum general education, by age--------------------------------------------------Maximum general education, by special trainings.---- ---Industry and occupation, by age-----------------------------------------------------Number of jobs, by years of experience________________
Maximum general education, by industry and occupation-------------------Year’s earnings, by employment status-----------------------------------------------Year’s earnings, by age----------------------------------------------------------------------Year’s earnings, by years of experience-----------------------------------------------Year’s earnings, by marital status and age------------------------------------------Year’s earnings, by living arrangements--------------------------------------------Year’s earnings, by maximum general education---------------------------------Median earnings, by age and maximum general education 40
Year’s earnings, by special training-------------------------------- ---------Median earnings, by maximum general education and special training—
Median earnings, by number of jobs and years of experience---------------Year’s earnings, by industry and occupation----------------------Median earnings, by occupation and general education—groups with
three or more medians obtainable------------------------------------- —_---------19. Median earnings, by industry and occupation and years of experience—
groups with three or more medians obtainable 56
20. Median earnings of women in specified sections of the country, by size of
city and town------------------------ ---------------------------------------------------------

Page

9
13
14
18
20
23
29
31
33
34
36
38
42
43
44
46
62

58

CHARTS
1. Earnings distribution for salaried and for independent workers-------------2. First quartile, second quartile (median), and third quartile earnings, by
3. First quartile, second quartile (median), and third quartile earnings, by
general education 38
4. Median earnings, by general education and age------------------------------------5. Earnings distribution in each industry group-----------------------------------6. First quartile, second quartile (median), and third quartile earnings, by
industry group 49
7- First quartile, second quartile (median), and third quartile earnings, by
size of community 57




30

40
48

LETTER OF TRANSMITTAL
United States Department op Labor,
Women’s Bureau,

Washington, December 26, 1933.
I have the honor to transmit a report on women in busi­
ness and the professions. The Women’s Bureau has tabulated and
analyzed the questionnaires—more than 20,000 in number—returned
by members of organizations in the National Federation of Business
and Professional Women’s Clubs in a study made for the federation
by the Carola Woerishoffer Graduate Department of Social Economy
and Social Research, Bryn Mawr College.
The object of the study was to learn the effects of age and various
other factors on the progress of these women, the extent to which they
were unemployed, and facts on which to base vocational advice.
. I believe the findings will be helpful to the great numbers of women
in these lines of work.
The report has been written by Harriet A. Byrne, assistant editor.
Respectfully submitted.
Mary Anderson, Director.
Hon. Frances Perkins,
Secretary oj Labor.
Madam:




v

THE AGE FACTOR AS IT RELATES TO
WOMEN IN BUSINESS AND THE
PROFESSIONS
Part I.—INTRODUCTION

To understand better the problems of women engaged in business
and professional pursuits, an ever-increasing number, has been the
objective of various groups of women. It was with a desire for bring­
ing about better conditions among these women that the National
Federation of Business and Professional Women’s Clubs was organized
in July 1919.
The objects of this organization as stated in its official bulletin are
as follows: To promote the interests of business and professional
women; to secure combined action by them; to gather and distribute
information relative to vocational opportunity; to stimulate local and
State organizations and cooperation among business and professional
women of the several States of the United States.
With a membership of almost 60,000 women throughout the coun­
try on July 1, 1931—58,720, excluding Alaska and Hawaii—and with
the accomplishment of some of the objectives set forth above, the
organization is in a position to be of great service to the women en­
gaged in business or the professions at the present time and those of
the future. The supplying of vocational information to the group
last mentioned should be one of its most useful accomplishments.
In the report of President Hoover’s Committee on Recent Social
Trends, in the chapter on “The activities of women outside the
home”, Sophonisba P. Breckenridge says of this organization: “Its
slogan is ‘at least a high-school education for every business girl’, and
its researches in the field of vocational aptitudes and of pecuniary
rewards are important contributions to the existing vocational
literature.”*
1
In the comparatively short time that the federation has been in ex­
istence much has been accomplished. To assist young girls finan­
cially in attaining a high-school education, 500 local educational funds
have been established. Its first large research project should be men­
tioned here also. Late in 1926 it was arranged that the federation
should cooperate with the bureau of business research of the Uni­
versity of Michigan in an occupational survey based on the work
liistories of the members of the federation, then numbering more than
46,000. This study gave tabulatable information regarding about
14,000 women. Two reports based on the data obtained in this sur­
vey are now in print, one on the earnings of these women and the other
on their occupational interests and the personality requirements for
such work.2
1 Recent Social Trends in the United States. Report of the President’s Research Committee on Social
Trends, voi. I, p. 747.
1 Elliott, Margaret, and Grace PI. Manson. Earnings of Women in Business and the Professions. Uni­
versity of Michigan. Michigan business studies, vol. Ill, no. 1, September 1930: and Manson, Grace E.
Occupational Interests and Personality Requirements of Women in Business and the Professions.
University of Michigan. Michigan business studies, vol. Ill, no. 3, April 1931.




1

2

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

In the spring of 1931 a plan was inaugurated for a second survey,
similar in many details to the first one, under the leadership of the
national research chairman, Dr. Lillian M. Gilbretli. The conduct of
this study was under her direction, with the assistance of Dr. Susan
M. Kingsbury, director of the graduate department of social econ­
omy and social research of Bryn Mawr College. Assisting Dr. Kings­
bury in this work was Dr. Anne Hendry Morrison, who had charge
of the field work of the survey and has written a separate report on
special case studies.3 The United States Women’s Bureau gave
suggestions regarding the proposed survey and has been responsible
for assembling the material, tabulating and analyzing the data, and
writing the report.
Another study of a similar nature, but of a much more selected
group of business and professional women, was conducted by the
American Woman’s Association in New York City. This survey
was planned in cooperation with President Hoover’s Emergency
Committee for Employment. The report of this survey, “The
Trained Woman and the Economic Crisis”, gives illuminating data
regarding the employment of business and professional women as
well as facts regarding unemployment. The questionnaire used in
this survey was sent to the members in February 1931. About 2,000
of a total membership of 4,800 responded to the questionnaires.4
Several persons interested in this study had taken an active part in
the studies of the National Federation of Business and Professional
Women’s Clubs; Dr. Gilbreth and Dr. Kingsbury, to mention only
two.
At the convention of the National Federation of Business and Profes­
sional Women’s Clubs held in Chicago during the summer of 1933 the
general opinion of the key women of the business and professional
world was that there were many opportunities for the young women
entering upon work for the first time. The summary following,
from the Chicago Tribune of July 12, shows for a number of special
lines of work what these women in the various occupations think of
the chances of young women now completing their schooling:
Aviation—For a year at least girls who take up flying would better adopt it
from the standpoint of sport rather than a livelihood.
Radio—Offers a good field for women as continuity writers, selling, supplying
talent, acting in skits, but definitely needs new ideas and good preparation.
Banking and finance—Offers a limited chance, but women have equal oppor­
tunities with men if they have the proper training.
Insurance—This field not overcrowded. Best results appear to come from
both men and women entering it between the ages of 28 and 40.
Journalism—At the present moment the field is closed, but as conditions
improve there should be a tremendous opportunity for women, especially on
small town papers.
Nursing—Definitely overcrowded, with 109,000 graduates in the field and
25,000 more turned out annually. Incomes of registered nurses have dropped
from $1,300 a year before the depression to $500. “Choose a training school as
carefully as you would choose a husband, if you enter this vocation. ”
Dentistry and medicine—No other profession offers today so great an oppor­
tunity for women as dentistry. The medical world also is wide open to them,
but they must give it the major part of life—no home interests can be permitted
to eclipse it.
Public office—There is antagonism against women at present, due to economic
conditions. Present percentage of women officeholders is so small as to be
3 Morrison, Anne Hendry. Women and Their Careers: A study of 306 women in business and the pro­
fessions. National Federation of Business and Professional Women’s Clubs, Inc. New York. 1934.
* The Trained Woman and the Economic Crisis. American Woman's Association. New York, 1931,
p.3.




INTRODUCTION

3

negligible, but improvement is confidently expected with the organized support
of women and a return of business.
Retail store service—Women should branch out and train for other positions
besides sales jobs.
Secretarial and general office work—For a long time there has been an over­
supply of workers, due partly to the mechanizing of office work. It may be
offset somew hat by the reduction of school budgets and a less number of com­
mercial-course graduates. Versatility and flexibility are needed. Few chances
now for women to become executives, but training and ability will improve them.
Advertising and promotion—Has a special appeal to women because of its
diversity. JSot overcrowded and probably will remain so under other conditions.
Ownership and management-—The only real competition is from materials—
not from men. Individuality and courage make for success. No overcrowding.

In summarizing the trends, it was pointed out that too many
business women look at conditions in their own lines from a personal
point of view, and that a broad perspective is necessary for the best
judgment. A survey of the reports indicated, it was stated, that
discrimination against women is extensive in many lines, some logical
and some inevitable, and women will have to watch carefully to
maintain their gains to date.
PURPOSE, SCOPE, AND METHOD

To bring before the reader the purpose of the survey upon which the
present report is based, the four objectives of the study as given on
the first page of the questionnaire are stated here:
1. To discover the psychological and economic factors involved in the
success of women in business and the professions.
2. To learn the extent to which business and professional women have
been affected by unemployment.
3. To determine whether age curtails a woman’s opportunity for progress
and why.
’
4. To obtain, as a result, information upon which to base vocational
advice.

In the endeavor to achieve some of these objectives an.intensive
analysis of the social, economic, and occupational histories of more
than 20,000 women has been made. To be exact, 20,168 of the 58,720
members of the organization in this country on July 1, 1931, filled in
questionnaires in sufficient detail to warrant their inclusion in the
study. Not only were the merely factual data regarding age, marital
status, education, earnings, and work experience analyzed but the
attitudes of the women toward their work, their financial and old-age
security, and other important phases of their working lives.
The questionnaire—a copy of which appears in the appendix—was
sent to the local clubs for distribution in April 1931. The time limit
for the acceptance of the returns for tabulation by the Women’s
Bureau was September 1, 1931.
No facts that would serve as identification were asked for on the
questionnaire. The only record kept was the number sent to each
club, and locally someone kept a check of those distributed to the
members. To insure the optimum of filled-in questionnaires, detailed
instructions accompanied each lot sent out.
The title of the questionnaire was “The Age Factor in the Employ­
ment of Business and Professional Women.”
The woman over 40 has been considered for some time an economic
problem. To obtain enlightenment regarding these women the
federation put forth objective no. 3 in its list of four, and stressed this
factor in the title.
34014°—34---- 2




4

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

In an earlier report of the Women’s Bureau, figures for almost 40,000
wage-earning women in manufacturing industries show the proportion
earning $15 or more to have a marked decline with women 40 years of
age or older,5 confirming the common belief that women in industry
must exist on a reduced income from the earliest of their middle years.
Among women in business and the professions, the age at which the
maximum earnings were reached was found to be higher than that
quoted for manufacturing. In the study made in cooperation with
the University of Michigan, the highest median earnings were those
of the women 45 and under 50 years of age. In the study by the
American Woman’s Association the highest median was for the
women 51 to 55.
In the present study the highest median also was for an older group,
those 50 and under 60. Interesting in connection with this is the fact
that the highest third quartile earnings 6 were for the women of 60
years and over, the group having much the largest proportion of strictly
professional women and a correspondingly smaller proportion of
clerical workers.
The return of the questionnaires by States was very satisfactory to
those in charge. From each of the 47 States and the District of
Columbia in which clubs have been formed, some filled-in question­
naires were received. The highest record was for a State that returned
usable questionnaires from a little over half its members, while the
lowest in the list had returns from about one twelfth of its members.
For the 22 States having 1,000 or more members, the proportion of
returns ranged from approximately one fourth of the membership to
not far from one half.
The largest number of usable questionnaires, almost 1,500, were
returned from a Middle Western State, Illinois. From 4 other States,
Kansas, Indiana, Iowa, and Pennsylvania, more than 1,000 were
received, and from 500 to 1,000 came from Ohio, Oklahoma, Michigan,
Missouri, Nebraska, California, Texas, and Washington, listed in
descending order.
As compared with the study made in Michigan, the response m the
present study was slightly greater, 34 percent as compared with 32
percent. This slight increase may be due to two things: (1) the
experience gained in filling in the questionnaires for the Michigan
study, and (2) the greater Interest in such questionnaires aroused by
the unemployment situation.
Because of the similarity in the questionnaires used, and the fact
that the same group was reached to a large degree, the plan of the
present report as regards tabulation and analysis has been patterned
quite extensively after the Michigan study. _ Some additional tabu­
lations have been made, and some included in the Michigan report
have been omitted.
_
.
.
In one important respect the tabulations differ, this being the occu­
pational classification. In this report the standard United States
Census classification by industry and occupational group within the
industry has been used’ while in the study prepared by the University
of Michigan, fields of employment, some of which follow rather closely
£ Wages of Women in 13 States. Women’s Bureau Bulletin No. 85, p. 76.
.
e Throughout this study, as in the Michigan report, the distributions have been described by the use of
quartiles, defined as follows: First, or lower quartile, one fourth of the cases fall below this point second
quartile, or median, one half of the cases fall below this point; third or upper quartile, three fourths of the
cases fall below this point and one fourth above.




INTRODUCTION

5

the census classification, and occupations classified on the basis of
the nature, of the work performed rather than the business in which
the job was done, were used. Other less important differences will
be noted in comparing this and the survey made in 1927.
SUMMARY OF FACTS

Date of study

Spring and summer of 1931.

Scope
Twenty thousand one hundred and sixty-eight women turned in usable ques­
tionnaires. Almost one half were in the North Central States, practically equally
divided between East and West North Central. More than one fifth were in
the South, and not far from one sixth in the Northeast and in the West.
PERSONAL INFORMATION

Age (19,793 reporting)
The average (median) age was 39)4 years.
were 50 years and over.

More than one fifth of the women

Marital status (20,095 reporting)
Just over two thirds were single and well over one half of the remainder were
married.

Experience (17,687 reporting)
Only a little more than one third had worked less than 10 years. Close to
three tenths had worked 20 years or more, many of them as long as 30 years.

General education (19,397 reporting)
Somewhat more than half had had no education beyond high school, roughly
1 in 6 of these stopping wfith the grades. About one sixth of the total were
college graduates.

Special training (19,108 reporting)
Besides' their general education, 16,204 had had special training. This was
chiefly business training, and the next largest group had been trained for teaching.
EMPLOYMENT EXPERIENCE

Industry (19,067 reporting)
The industries employing the women included all but 1 of the 10 industry
groupings of the United States Census.

Number of jobs (17,610 reporting)
Almost one half had had only 1 or 2 jobs; slightly more than one fifth had had
5 or more.

Employment status (19,162 reporting)
Almost seven eighths were salaried workers, the remainder being independent
workers such as owners of businesses, public stenographers, lawyers, doctors, and
others in private practice.

Unemployment (20,168 reporting)
Only a little over 3 percent were unemployed on the last day of 1930.
EARNINGS

Year’s earnings (15,718 reporting)
The median earnings—one half earning more and one half less—were $1,625,
one fourth having earned less than $1,210 and one fourth having earned more
than $2,075. One eighth earned less than $1,000 and one eighth $2,500 or more.
Of the great majority between these, four fifths earned $1,000 and under $2,000.
Earnings were highest for physicians and lowest for saleswomen, being highest
for college graduates and lowest for the normal-school educated. Earnings in­
creased with experience; and with age up to 60 years. They were on a higher
level for single than for married women.
They were highest in the Northeast and the East North Central sections of the
country, increasing with size of community.




Part II.—PERSONAL INFORMATION
Section of country and size of city

In classifying the women in the study by place of residence, the
nine sectional groupings of the United States Census were followed.
When the numbers falling in these nine classes were arrived at, it was
thought best to combine some of the groups still further. Two of
the three larger areas of the 1930 census classification, the South and
the West, were retained. The third large group, the North, seemed
unworkable because of the great numbers of women that would fall
there. In breaking up this area, three subdivisions were used: The
Northeast, comprising the New England and Middle Atlantic States;
the East North Central; and the West North Central.
The largest proportion (24.2 percent) of the 20,168 women were
in the East North Central States—Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan,
and Wisconsin. Almost as large a proportion (23 percent) were in
the West North Central States—Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, North
Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, and Kansas. The next largest
proportion (21.6 percent) were in the South, in which section were
included the South Atlantic and the East South Central and West
South Central States. Almost equal proportions, 15.7 percent and
15.5 percent, respectively, were in the Northeast section, New
England and the Middle Atlantic States combined, and in the West,
comprising the Mountain and Pacific States combined.
The proportions of the women in towns or cities of specified sizes
varied considerably with section of country. In the West North
Central section and the West almost one tliird—31.3 percent and
32.1 percent, respectively—lived in towns of less than 5,000, as com­
pared with not quite one fourth (23.9 percent) of the women in the
South and approximately one eighth—12.6 percent and 11.3 percent,
respectively—in the Northeast and the East North Central States.
About one sixth of the women in each of the geographical sections
except the Northeast were in towns of 5,000 and less than 10,000.
The Northeast had only about one half so large a proportion thus
reported.
The proportions in cities of 10,000 and less than 25,000 ranged from
about , two tenths (21 percent) of the women in the East North
Central, to three tenths (30.4 percent) of those in the West North
Central section.
Exactly one eighth of the women in the West North Central and
practicaliy the same in the West lived in towns of 25,000 and less
than 100,000, as compared with one fifth (20.2 percent) of those in
the South and about three tenths (28.6 percent and 30.5 percent,
respectively) of those in the Northeast and in the East North Central
States.
Only one tenth (10.5 percent) of the women in the West North
Central States and one eighth (12.5 percent) of those in the West
lived in cities of 100,000 or more, while in the South 1 in 7 (14.5 per­
cent) of the women wrere in cities as large as this. In the East North
Central close to one fifth (19 percent) and in the Northeast practically
three tenths (28,4 percent) lived in cities of this size.
6




.

7

PERSONAL INFORMATION

The women in the study are representative of the entire member­
ship as far as locality is concerned. Only slight differences exist
between total and study in the proportions in the various parts of
the country.
In comparing the women in the survey with all gainfully employed
white women 18 years of age and over according to the 1930 census,
by section of the country in which employed, interesting differences
appear, especially in the Northeast and the West North Central
sections. As many as 37.7 percent of the total for the United States
are in the Northeast in contrast to only 15.7 percent of those in the
study; and only 10.3 percent of the total, in contrast to 23 percent
of the women in the study, are in the West North Central States.
For the other throe sections the differences are not great, none being
so much as five points.
Women’s Bureau
study, 1930
Section of country
Number

Percent

Gainfully employed
white women 18 years
of age and over in the
United States 1
Number

Percent

20,168

West

100.0

8, 279, 724

100.0

3,164
4,883
4, 630
4,358
3,133

15.7
24.2
23.0
21.6
15.5

3,121,446
1,839, 040
853, 127
1,549,939
916,172

37.7
22.2
10.3
18.7
11.1

1 U.S. Bureau of the Census, Fifteenth Census, 1930, Occupation Statistics, Age of Gainful Workers,
ch. IV, vol. V, p. 118.

Age

Like the 14,000 business and professional women in the 1927 study,
the more than 20,000 in the present survey were a mature group.
As may be seen from the summary following, the median age of the
entire number reporting—one half being younger and one half
older—was 39.5 years, while for the approximately 8% million white
women 18 years of age or older gainfully occupied in the United
States in 1930 the median was only 30 years.
Women’s Bureau
study, 1930
Age
Number

Percent

Gainfully enfployed
white women 18 years
of age and over in the
United States 1
Number

Percent

19,793

First, quartile age--------------------------- ------------- years-Median age------------------------------------------ ------- do----Third quartile age___________________________ do___

100.0

8, 269,579

100.0

54
4,249
5,872
5,437
3,231
950

0.3
21.5
29.7
27.5
16.3
4.8

820,014
3, 291,273
1,711,059
1, 228,033
775,460
443, 740

9.9
39.8
20.7
14.9
9.4
5.4

31 .2
3S .5
4£ .5

2£ .1
3(). 1
45 .8

1 U.S. Bureau of the Census, Fifteenth Census, 1930, Occupation Statistics, Age of Gainful Workers
ch. IV, vol. V, pp. 28, 50.




8

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

This difference in character between the business and professional
groups and the total for the United States is not hard to understand.
Not only does the census total for all classes include employments
with enormous numbers of young people, but the business and
professional clubs attract the older woman especially. One half
(49.7 percent) of all gainfully employed white women of 18 years or
more were below 30 years of age. In contrast to this, of the almost
20,000 business and professional women reporting age in the
present study, only 21.7 percent were under 30, 29.7 percent being
30 and under 40, and almost one half (48.6 percent) being 40 or
older.
Discrimination against women because of age

Of the 18,585 women who reported as to whether they had received
unfair treatment on account of age, 1,175, or more than 6 percent,
said that they had received such treatment. Of this number 408
had been discriminated against because they were too old and 295
because they were too young; the remainder did not specify whether
youth or age was the cause.
When industry and occupation were tied up with discrimination
against the older women, clerical work took the heaviest toll, two
fifths of those reporting being in this group. Next came teaching,
with about one third, and next of any importance was trade, mostly
saleswomen, with about one twelfth.
Only 64 percent of the 408 who reported that they had been
discriminated against because they were too old, reported the age
at which the discrimination occurred. Thirty-three of these said
they were 40 years or older, but 26 of them were under 50.
Marital status

Of all the women in the study, only 73 failed to report their marital
status. Of those reporting 2 in 3 (67.5 percent) were single, 2 in
11 (18.1 percent) were married, 1 in 12 (8.5 percent) were widowed,
and 1 in 17 (5.9 percent) were separated or divorced.
When age was correlated with marital status, the median age
of the 3,571 married women was found to be practically the same
as the median of the total, the figures being respectively 39.4 years
and 39.5 years. Slightly less than these—37.9 years—was the median
for the 13,332 single women, while for the 1,666 widowed and the
1,181 separated or divorced the figures were respectively 50.5 years
and 41.8 years.
Family responsibility

Of the 20,168 women in the study, 14,346, or more than seven
tenths, reported as to whether or not they had anyone dependent
upon them, either wholly or in part. Almost two thirds (63.6 per­
cent) of these had someone for whose support they were entirely
or partly responsible.
Almost three tenths (28.1 percent) of the 9,118 women with some
responsibility for dependents carried such responsibility alone. Not
far from two thirds (62.3 percent) shared with others the responsi­
bility for dependents, and the remaining one tenth had the entire re­
sponsibility for some dependents and shared it for others.
Almost two thirds of the 2,554 women reporting entire responsibility
and number of dependents had only 1 dependent, but about one fourth




PERSONAL INFORMATION

9

had 2 and the remainder had 3 or more, 42 having as many as 5 de­
pendents.
.
.
More than two thirds of the 857 women who had the entire responsi­
bility for some dependents and shared it in the case of others had only
one for whom they were entirely responsible. About equal parts of
the women who shared responsibility had 2 or more and only 1.
Expressed differently, approximately 3,400 women had the entire
responsibility for about 5,200 dependents; about 6,500 women had
the partial responsibility for about 12,500 other persons.
Women reporting family responsibility
Number of dependents
Total
reporting

Entire
responsi­
bility

Some en­
tire, other
shared

Total with dependents:
Number____
Percent

9,118
100.0

2,565
28. 1

873
9.6

5,680
62.3

Reporting number of dependents------------------------- Percent distribution-------------------------------

9,005
100.0

2, 554
100.0

857
100.0

5. 594
100.0

1
_____________________________________
2
________________
3
.
___ ____
4
____ _. _
5 or more ----------- -------------------------------------------------

55.2
27.5
9.0
4.4
4.0

63.4
24.7
7.0
3.3
1.6

68.8
21.7
6.5
2. 1
.8

49.3
29.7
10.3
5.2
5.5

Shared

Of the women reporting age and family responsibility, well over •
three fifths had some dependents. The proportions in the various
age groups who had dependents were more than one half of those 20
and under 30 years of age, almost two thirds of those 30 and under
40, and seven tenths of those 40 and under 50. From this on, the
proportions with dependents were again less, about three fifths of
those 50 and under 60 and less than one half of those 60 years of age
and over.
Table

1.—Family responsibility, by age

[Percents not computed where base is less than 50]
Women reporting on family responsibility

Age

Total

Total re­
porting

With dependents

Number Number

Not re­
porting on
family
responsi­
bility

With no
dependents

Percent
Percent
of total Number of total Number
reporting
reporting

20,168

14,346

9,118

63.6

5,228

36.4

5,822

Total reporting

19, 793

14,122

8.969

63.5

5,153

36.5

5,671

20 and under 30 years_________
30 and under 40 years-------------40 and under 50 years
50 and under 60 years
60 years and over —

54
4, 249
5,872
5,437
3,231
950

27
2, 489
4, 335
4, 218
2, 396
657

6
1,340
2,854
2,963
1,488
318

53.8
65.8
70.2
62. 1
48.4

21
1,149
1,481
1,255
908
339

46.2
34.2
29.8
37.9
51.6

27
1, 760
1,537
1,219
835
293

375

224

149

66.5

75

33.5

151

Total

Not reporting age_____




10

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

Among the 9,096 women reporting marital status and dependency,
almost one half of those with entire responsibility were single, not far
from one fifth were married, and practically one third were widowed
separated, or divorced. The proportions of the single and married
women who had the entire responsibility for some dependents were
less than for the total, 22.7 percent and 24.4 percent, respectively.
In contrast to these, one half of the widowed, separated, or divorced
women had the entire responsibility for persons other than them­
selves.
The proportions with the entire responsibility for some dependents
and part of it for others were 7 percent of the single women, 12 3 per­
cent of the married, and 14.9 percent of those widowed, separated or
divorced. Seven tenths of the single women, almost two thirds of
those married, and more than one third of the widowed and separated
women only shared the responsibility for dependents.

Marital status

Total
reporting
with
family
responsi­
bility
(number)

Total reporting marital status and dependents...
Single......... . ...
Married.. _ ___
Widowed, separated, or divorced-

Percent of w omen reporting family
responsibility
Entire
responsi­
bility

Some en­
tire, other
shared

9,09G

28.1

9.6

62.3

5,456
1,957
1,683

22.7
24.4
50. 1

7.0
12.3
14.9

70.4
63.3
34.9

Shared

-------------------------------------------------------------.—_

Discrimination against married women

Of the 6,117 women who were or had been married and who re­
ported as to whether they had been discriminated against because ot
marriage, about one fifth (1,133 women) reported such discrimination
borne ol these married women reported discrimination against them
m the teaching profession, in clerical pursuits, in nursing, in trade
and m other lines. Several stated that they had received unfavorable
treatment due to marriage in more than one pursuit.
A few examples of teachers who had been discriminated against
because of marriage follow here:
A woman of a little more than 30, a resident of a Middle Atlantic
btate, separated from her husband and with a 6-year-old son to
support, felt ‘emphatically” that she had been discriminated
against because of marriage in teaching, for which her training had
prepaied her. She had taught for only one school year since her
marriage in 1921.
A woman of around 30 years, with 1 child and 2 adults dependent
upon her, and living in a West North Central State, had taught
school for 9 years before marriage. She had a bachelor’s degree in
education, but since her marriage she had been able to secure onlv
substitute teaching.
A married woman about 35, living in the West, had held several
teaching positions before 1928. At the time of filling in the question­
naire she was in an entirely different line of work.
In office work many women reported discrimination because of
marriage. Such statements as these were noted on the questionnaires




PERSONAL INFORMATION

11

in reply to the inquiry as to the field in which discrimination had
occurred:
Stenographic positions for private concerns.
Clerical—bank.
Secretarial work or office work—large corporations do not
employ married women.
Telephone company will not employ married women living with
husbands.
Kailway office.
Bookkeeping.
Stenographic.
Clerical work.
City civil service and teaching.
Of the women who had received unfavorable treatment because
they were married, 935 reported as to family responsibility. Though
more than one fourth (26.3 percent) had no dependents, as many as
689 women had one or more. Almost one third (30.8 percent) had
the entire responsibility for other members of their families, well
over one half (55.6 percent) shared the responsibility with others,
and about 1 in 8 (13.6 percent) were entirely responsible for some
and only partly responsible for others.
Health

A large proportion of the women in the study had excellent health,
but more than one fourth (27.3 percent) of the almost 20,000 reporting
had had serious illnesses or operations since they began work. When
age was correlated with health during the period of their work his­
tories, it was found that serious illnesses increased considerably with
advancing age up to 50 and under 60 years. Only about 1 in 6 (16.5
percent) of the women under 30 had suffered any serious illness, in
contrast to more than one third (34.4 percent) of those 50 and under
60. The same proportion of those 60 or older as of those 50 and
under 60 reported severe illness.
Taken from another angle, of the 5,274 women who had had a
serious illness or operation, less than 14 percent were under 30 years;
29.4 percent and 31.2 percent were, respectively, 30 and under 40
and 40 and under 50 years; 20.3 percent were 50 and under 60; and
only 5.8 percent were 60 years and over.
Women 40 years of age and over formed only 48.6 percent of all
women reporting age, but they were 57.3 percent of the women
reporting serious illnesses or operations.
Just over one fourth (26.7 percent) of the 19,555 women who
reported as to whether they had worked under conditions that
affected their health replied in the affirmative, but less than 1 percent
stated that their health had been affected seriously.
As might be expected, the practice of osteopathy and of medicine
and the occupation of nursing were the only groups with proportions
worth noting of women whose health had been affected seriously,
and even here the highest percentage was 2.7.
Living arrangements

As many as 19,667 women reported on their living arrangements.
Almost two fifths (37.8 percent) maintained their own homes, more
than two fifths (44.5 percent) lived with parents, relatives, or friends,
34014°—34-----3




12

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

most of them sharing expenses, and about one sixth (17.7 percent)
lived in boarding or rooming houses. As would be expected, a very
large proportion of the married women (86.6 percent) maintained
their own homes, as did about three fifths (61.5 percent) of the
widowed and one half (49.6 percent) of the separated or divorced
women. Only about one fifth (21.1 percent) ot the single women
maintained their own homes. The proportions of the women in the
various marital groups who lived in rooming or boarding houses
ranged from about 1 in 25 (3.9 percent) ot ttie married women to
something over 1 in 5 (22.3 percent) of the single women.
Experience

Approximately 18,000 women reported as to the length of their
working experience. Only about 1 in 7 (14.3 percent) had worked
less than 5 years. One fifth (20.4 percent) had worked 5 and less
than 10 years and just over one fifth (21.8 percent) 10 and less than
15 years. From 15 years on, the proportion dropped from 14.8
percent for the women reporting 15 and less than 20 years of experi­
ence, to about 8 percent for the women in the two highest experience
groups—25 and less than 30 years and 30 years and over.
As would be expected, as the ages of the women advanced the
median 1 of the years of experience increased, from 5 years for the
women 20 and under 30 to 32.7 years for the women 60 years and
older.
Little difference was noted in the medians of years of experience
when correlated with marital status. The lowest median was 12.2
years, the figure for the married women, and the highest was 14
years, the figure for both the single and the widowed. For those
reporting age as well, the medians were exactly the same.
However, when specified age groups were considered with marital
status and experience, greater differences were noted in the resulting
medians of years of experience.
In every age group but 20 and under 30 years, the median of
experience was highest for the single women. This was to be ex­
pected, as their working experience had not been interrupted by
marriage. The medians for the single women increased with their
age from 4.8 to 37.1 years of experience. For the age group 20 and
under 30, the one exception in which the single women had not the
highest median of experience, the median for married women—6.4
years—was one third higher than that for single women—4.8 years.
General education

About 19,400 women reported as to their maximum general educa­
tion. Practically 9.1 percent had had no schooling higher than the
elementary grades, 14.3 percent had attended high school but had
not completed the course, and 29.3 percent had completed high school.
Approximately one seventh had attended normal school, but con­
siderably more than half of these had not finished. One third of the
group reporting had attended college, but slightly more than half of
these had not completed the course. A large part of those who had
finished college had only a bachelor’s degree, though some had a
master’s or doctor’s degree.
i For definition see footnote 6, p. 4.




13

PERSONAL INFORMATION

All but 298 of the women reporting on maximum general education
reported age, so the distributions of the two totals are almost identical.
As would be expected, the proportions of the various age groups
whose maximum general education was grade school increased steadily
with age, from 1.9 percent of those under 20 years to 15.1 percent of
those 60 and over. Among the women who had completed high
school-—much the largest class in every age group but 60 years and
over, where college incomplete was practically as large—the differ­
ences were great also. Three fourths (75.5 percent) of those under
20 years and more than two fifths (42.8 percent) of those 20 and
under 30 years had completed high school, but for the other age
groups the proportions dropped sharply, the highest being 27.1
percent for the women 30 and under 40 years and the lowest 21.8
percent for those 60 years of age and over."
For 1 in 8 of all the women the maximum education was a bachelor’s
degree for completing a college course, reported by 15.3 percent of
those 20 and under 30 and by less proportions of the older women,
terminating with only 7.8 percent of those 60 and over. Higher
degrees had been awarded to comparatively few women, and propor­
tions were not greatly affected by age. In summary, however, only
about 13 percent of the women of 50 and over, in contrast to more
than 17 percent of those under 40, had a college degree.
College training not completed shows the opposite to the reports
just described. The proportions begin with 7.5 percent for the small
group under 20 years, are between 16 and 17 percent for the women
20 and under 40, are just over 18 percent for those 40 and under 60,
and jump to 21.5 percent for the women of 60 and over.
Table 2.-—Maximum general education, by age
Womei report ng age
Maximum general education

Total________ ____ _

Total

Total
report­
ing

20,168

19,793

Un­ 20 and 30 and 40 and 50 and
60
der under under under under years
20
30
40
50
60
and
years years years years years over
54

4,249

5, 872

5,437

3,231

950

Not
re­
port­
ing
age

375

Not reporting maximum general
education—number._

771

694

1

76

142

205

175

95

77

Total reporting._ .......................... .
Percent distribution:

19,397
100.0

19,099
100.0

53
100.0

4,173
100.0

5,730
100. 0

5, 232
100.0

3,056
100.0

855
100.0

298
100.0

Grade school
High school incomplete. ______ _
High school complete
Normal school incomplete
Normal school complete.._ _____
College incomplete___ _. ______

9.1
14.3
29.3
8.7
5.3
17.5
12.5

9.1
14.3
29.4
8.7
5.3
17.4
12. 5

1.9
11.3
75. 5
3.8

2.5
7.7
42.8
8.5
5. 9
16. 1
15. 3

8.3
15.3
27.1
9.2
4 7
16.7

11.8
17.6
24.7
8.0

13.2
15.9
24.6
9.6

15.1
13.0
21.8
8. 1

9.4
17.1
26.8
6.0

18.2
10.6

18.4

21.5
7.8

18.8
12.4

.8
2.5
.2

.8
2.4
.2

.2

.2

.2

.2

.3

Bachelor’s degree and graduate
Doctor’s degree

_

7.5

.4
-........

.1

Special training

Of the 19,108 women who reported on the matter of special training,
15.2 percent replied that they had had none. Of the 16,204 who had
had such training, one half (50.4 percent) had had special business




14

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

training, almost three tenths (29 percent) teacher’s training, and the
remainder various other kinds.
Of the 18,505 women who reported on general education and special
training, about 6 in 7 had had some special training. Omitting
normal school as more properly special training in itself, it appears
that of those who reported their specific achievements in general
education the proportion with special training ranged from 65.8
percent of the women who had attended only grammar school to
95.1 percent of those who had completed a college course.
Besides the business and teacher’s training, only nursing was
reported by as many as 5 percent of the women, and even this,
strictly speaking, was 4.9 percent. The variety was considerable—
medical, legal, library, social service, art, music, and other forms of
vocational training.
The proportions of women with special business or teacher’s
training varied greatly with general education. The proportions
with business training ranged from 12 percent of the college graduates
to 80.8 percent of the high school students. Almost three fourths of
those who had not gone beyond grade school had had some training
for business. Less than 2 percent of those who went no further than
high school reported teacher-training courses. As would be expected,
less than 1 percent of those who had attended only grammar school
had had any training for teaching. For the other classes of special
training the variations by general education were not so striking.
Table 3.—Maximum general education, by special training
Women reporting maximum general
education
Special training

Total

Total Grade High Nor­ Col­
lege
report­ school school mal incom­
ing
school1 plete

Col­
lege
com­
plete

Not re­
porting
(num­
ber)

Total-............................................ ......... 20,168

19,397

1,759

8,463

2,704

3,386

3,085

771

Not reporting special training—number..
1,060
Total reporting—number----------------- ... 19,108
No special training—number________
2,904
15.2

892
18, 505
2, 723
14.7

176
1,583
542
34.2

514
7, 949
1,759
22. 1

6
2, 698
4
0. 1

136
3,250
269
8.3

60
3,025
149
4.9

168
603
181

With special training............................. 16,204
Percent distribution:

15, 782
100.0

1,041
100. 0

6,190
100.0

2,694
100. 0

2,981
100.0

2,876
100.0

422

49.9
29.6
4.9
4.1
1.3
.7
.3
.7
8.4

74.3
.7
5.8
1.2
.2

80.8
1.9
6.7
2.5
.6
(2)
. 1
.3
7.0

17.1
77.2
1.7
1.9
.4

43.5
25.8
7.2
8.4
2.2
.3
.5
.7
11.3

12.0
58.9
1.5
6.4
3.2
3.8
.8
2.2
11.3

286
23
34
25
7

Business.............. ............................................
Teaching—---------- ---------------------------Nursing___ . _______
Library work, music, art...............................
Social and welfare work
Dentistry, pharmacy......................................
Law . ---------------------------------------------Other________ _____ ______ ____________

8,166
4, 693
811
678
217
117
47
106
1,369

.1
.2
17.6

(">
.1
1.6

1
46

1 In this study normal-school attendance has been classed as general education to conform to the earlier
Michigan study. Only about 77 percent of the women who had been to normal school gave teaching as
their special training.
2 Less than 0.05 percent.




Part III.—EMPLOYMENT EXPERIENCE

Since this is a study of women in business and the professions, the
work that they were engaged in is of great significance. The indus­
tries in which they were employed, the specific occupations at which
they worked, their status as salaried or independent workers, their
employment history, and the effects of such factors as age, experience,
schooling, size of city, and so forth, will be discussed in this section.
INDUSTRY AND OCCUPATION

The members of business and professional women’s clubs are
engaged primarily in clerical and professional pursuits. The 19,067
reporting occupation in the present study were represented in all but
one (forestry and fishing) of the 10 industry groupings used by the
United States Census. A large part of those engaged in work classed
as manufacturing, trade, and domestic and personal service were
owners, managers, or officials.
The largest proportions of the women reporting their occupations
were the 40.7 percent in clerical occupations and the 36.2 percent in
professional pursuits. No other group approached these, the third
in size being the 12.8 percent engaged in trade. The other groups
ranged from 3.1 percent in domestic and personal service to two tenths
of 1 percent in agriculture or mining, tabulated together.
The largest proportion (37.5 percent) of the 7,760 clerical workers
were secretaries; 27.3 percent were bookkeepers, accountants, or
cashiers. Practically equal proportions, 14.3 percent and 15 per­
cent, respectively, were stenographers or typists and clerks or miscel­
laneous workers. Only 6 percent were office managers or public
stenographers.
As many as three fifths (60.7 percent) of the 6,909 professional
workers were teachers, followed by the 11.1 percent who were trained
nurses. No other occupation employed anything like 10 percent of
the women. Between 5 and 6 percent (5.4) were social or welfare
workers, and still smaller groups followed other professional pursuits
such as library or editorial and research work, medicine, and law, or
were employed in laboratory work or as assistants to doctors and
dentists.
In a comparison of occupations between women in this study and
all gainfully occupied women as reported by the census, naturally
the most striking differences are in the clerical and professional groups,
which constitute, as already noted, 40.7 percent and 36.2 percent,
respectively, of the women in the present study but are only 18.5
percent and 14.2 percent of all gainfully occupied women in the
United States.1 In trade the proportions differ much less, 12.8
percent in this study and 9 percent for the United States. However,
in one group under trade the difference is considerable: 7.2 percent
of the women in trade in tins study were owners, managers, or officials,
as against only 1.1 percent of all women in trade in the United States.
The other industry groups, which comprise only about 10 percent
of the women in the study, make up about 60 percent of the total of
gainfully occupied women in the United States.
1 U.S. Bureau of the Census, Fifteenth Census, 1930, Occupation Statistics, p. 8




15

16

AGE FACTOR IKf BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

Occupation and size of city

The occupations in which the women in large and in small cities
were engaged are of interest. In towns of under 5,000 the profes­
sional group was the largest; elsewhere it ranked below the clerical
group.
Teachers constituted the largest single group in all but the cities of
100,000 and over, where secretaries outranked them. Where teachers
were the largest group, secretaries generally followed next. The
bookkeeper, accountant, and cashier group ranked third in all popula­
tion classes but the smallest, where it stood second.
As many as 29.2 percent of the women in towns of less than 5,000,
in contrast to only 14.4 percent of those in cities of 100,000 or more,
were teachers.
The proportions engaged in clerical work ranged from 34.5 percent
of all workers in the smallest towns to 45. 5 percent of those in the
largest cities.
Certain small groups such as physicians, lawyers, social workers,
and public stenographers and office managers increased in proportion
with size of city, as did the large group of secretaries. Teachers,
stenographers and typists, saleswomen, and telephone operators were
more largely represented in the small places.
It was to be expected that the proportions of the social and welfare
workers would increase with size of city. Only one half of 1 percent
of the women in towns of less than 5,000 population were so reported,
as compared with 3.5 percent of those in cities of 100,000 or over.
The proportion the public stenographers and office managers
formed of the total in the largest cities is nine times as great as that
in the smallest cities, 5.4 percent as compared with 0.6 percent.
Secretaries were 18.8 percent of the women in the cities of 100,000 or
more, but were only 11.2 percent in the towns of less than 5,000.
Occupation and age

It is apparent that in some occupations the women were chiefly
young and in others they were a much older group. For example, of
the 259 women reporting in transportation and communication—more
than one half telephone and telegraph operators—only 37 were as
much as 50 years old. Of the 134 operators, all but 8 were under 50,
about two fifths (38.8 percent) being under 30. The owners and
managers were older women. The majority of the 2,406 women in
trade, two thirds of whom were owners, managers, or buyers, were
in the middle years. About two fifths (41.5 percent) of the 497 sales­
women were under 40, and only about one fourth (26 percent) were
50 or more. Only 70 of the 1,087 stenographers and typists were as
much as 50 years, in contrast to 464 who were under 30. Most of the
2,864 secretaries were in the middle years, less than three tenths (28.8
percent) being under 30 and less than one seventh as much as 50.
A large proportion (33) of the 52 women under 20 years of age
were in some clerical pursuit and only a few (7) were in professional
work. Five were in domestic and personal service and 7 were dis­
tributed among 3 of the remaining industry groups. Of the 33 young
clerical workers, 16 were secretaries and 10 were stenographers or
typists.
The largest proportion (51.2 percent) of the 4,058 women 20 and
under 30 years of age were in clerical work. Almost two fifths of




EMPLOYMENT EXPERIENCE

17

these were secretaries, and one fourth were bookkeepers, accountants,
or cashiers. More than one third of the workers in this age group
were in professional work, the great majority being teachers.
Forty-three and four tenths percent of the 5,637 women 30 and
under 40 years of age were in clerical work. Here, too, most of
these clerical workers were secretaries or bookkeepers, accountants,
or cashiers. More than one third of the women in this age group were
in professional pursuits, and not far from 2 in 3 of these were teachers.
The only other group comprising more than one tenth of the profes­
sional group were the trained nurses, for whom the proportion was
11.1 percent. Just over one tenth (10.7 percent) of the women in
this age group were in trade.
Almost two fifths (38.3 percent) of the 5,135 women 40 and under
50 years of age were in clerical work, one third (33.9 percent) being
in professional occupations. The principal clerical occupations for
this group, as for all the younger groups, were secretaries and book­
keepers, cashiers, and accountants. Of the 1,742 professional work­
ers, 56.8 percent were teachers and 13.1 percent were trained nurses.
One sixth of the women of this age group were in trade, a large part
of these being owners, managers, or buyers.
Almost two fifths (37 percent) of the 3,016 women 50 and under
60 years of age were in professional work and only three tenths
(30.9 percent) were in clerical pursuits. Almost one fifth (18.8
percent) were in trade, a large proportion being owners, managers, or
officials. Specific occupations of professional and clerical workers
were represented in much the same proportions as for the younger
groups. The largest proportion (45.2 percent) of the 869 women
who were 60 years of age and over were professional workers. In no
other age group did professional workers form so large a percentage.
The next highest proportion, 21.2 percent, were clerical workers, and
no other age group had so small a percentage of these.
Clerical workers:—To sum up the data just presented, clerical
workers were a greater part of the total among the younger women
than among the older. As the ages of the women increased, the
proportion clerical workers formed of the total decreased steadily
from 63.5 percent of those under 20 to 21.2 percent of those 60 or
more.
The proportions of clerical workers who were secretaries decreased
with age from 39 percent of those 20 and under 30 to 32.6 percent of
those 60 or more. For bookkeepers, accountants, or cashiers the
proportions were around one fourth in each age group.
The small proportions holding higher-grade positions classed as
office managers or public stenographers increased generally with age.
The decrease with age in the proportions of stenographers and
typists was very marked. Slightly more than one fifth (21.9 percent)
of those 20 and not yet 30 were so classed, in contrast to only 5.4
percent of the women 60 years old or more.
Professional workers.—Professional work claimed only 13.5 percent
of those under 20 years of age, from 34 to 37 percent of the 4 successive
age groups, and as many as 45.2 percent of those 60 years and
over. Among the professional women three fifths (60.7 percent)
were teachers. The proportions that teachers formed of all in the
professions decreased with age. More than seven tenths (71.6
percent) of the professional workers 20 and under 30 years of age,



Table 4.—Industry and occupation, by age

00

[Percents not shown where base is less than 50]

Industry and occupation

Total

Total—Num ber...... ....................... .................... .
Total reporting:
Number_____
Percent. __________

___

19,793

54

4,249

5,872

5,437

3,231

950

____ 19,067
100.0

18,767
100.0

52
100.0

4.058
100.0

5,637
100.0

5,135
100.0

3,016
100.0

869
100.0

300

3
0.1

7
0.1

11
0.2

11
0.4

33
.8
22
1
10

127
2.3
103
9
15

163
3.2
134
19
10

138
4.6

46
5.3

15

100.0

25
9

9
3

3
3

20 and 30 and 40 and 50 and 60 years
under under under under
and
30 years 40 years 50 years 60 years over

375

12.6
9.8

Milliners and dressmakers______ ___________
All others.
________ ___ .
___ ____
Transportation and communication:
Number.____ ______________________
Percent_____________
___________
...
Owners, managers, officials____ ____ _________
Telegraph and telephone operators_____
._
All others .
________
__
.
Trade:
Number_____ ______________________
_
Percent
Saleswomen ... ...
Public service (not elsewhere classified):
Number __________________________________
Percent_________ ______________
Professional service:
'
Number____ ______
Percent
Teachers.................. ........................... ......................




Total

20,168

Agriculture and extraction of minerals:
Number_________________ _
Percent_____________ _____ _______ __________
Manufacturing:
Number _________________________________
Percent________________________________ ___

Editorial and research workers

Percent of women in each occupation

Not re­
Total Under 20 and 30 and 40 and 50 and 60 years porting
age
report­ 20 years under under under under
and
ing
30 years 40 years 50 years 60 years over

33
0.2

32
0.2

523
2.7
406
66
51

508
2.7
397
63
48

1
1.9

264
1.4
114
136
14

259
1.4
111
134
14

3
5.8
2
1

67
1.7
14
51
2

77
1.4
34
41
2

75
1.5
34
33
8

26
.9
17
7
2

11
1.3
10
1

2,444
12.8
1, 631
505
308

2,406
12.8
1,604
497
305

3

223
5.5
111
82
30

603
10.7
406
124
73

853
16.6

568
18.8

159
103

539
2.8

532
2.8

78
1.9

162
2.9

6,909
36.2
4, 192
766
376
263
239

6,805
36.3
4, 129

1,484
36.6
1, 062
117
46
34
63

37?
259
235

1

3

T~
13.5
3

2

1
100.0

100.0

100.0

6.1

6.5

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

3
2

43.2
51.5
5.3

20 9
76.1
3.0

44 2
53. 2
2.6

44 0
10.7

156
18.0

38

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

100
72

29
27

8

20.7
12.6

36.8
13.5

20.6
12. 1

18.6
12.1

1?! 6
12.7

18.6
17.3

150
2.9

102
3.4

40
4.6

7

2,062
36.6
1,312
229
- 89

1,742
33.9
990
229

1,117
37.0
573

393
45. 2
189

104

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

63

60.7

71.6

63.6

56.8
in i

51.3

48.1

64

45

37

3.5

4.2

3.1

2.6

3.3

6.1

24 !

41

A G E FA CTO R IN B U S IN E S S AND T H E PR O FE SSIO N S

Women reporting age

Technicians, laboratory assistants, chemists,
34014°—34-

Dentists’ and doctors’ assistants--------------------

All others-. ______ ____ _____ _____ ________
Domestic and personal service:
Number_______________ _______ ____________
Owners and managers
Clerical service:
Number_____ ________________ _____ ________

Not reporting industry or occupation______




____

147
130
113
105
75
486

1

40
35
6
8
11
62

59
45
30
15
36
124

28
28
14
33
14
163

17
17
38
32
12
97

3
4
25
17
2
39

595
3. 1
403
192

585
3.1
395
190

5
9.6
2
3

94
2.3
53
41

150
2.7
113
37

174
3.4
124
50

123
4.1
81
42

7, 760
40.7
464
2,910
2,117
1,108
1,161

7.640
40. 7
459
2. 864
2. 083
1,087
1,147

33
63.5
1
16
3
10
3

2,076
51.2
43
809
538
454
232

2,449
43.4
142
929
674
352
352

1, 967
38. 3
174
721
561
201
310

1,101

1,026

2

191

235

302

1

4
3
2

2. 2
1.9
1. 7

2. 7
2.4
.4

7

1.1
7.1

39
4. 5
22
17

10

931
30. 9
84
329
254
60
204
215

.7
4.2

2. 9
2.2
1. 5
.7
1. 7
6.0

100.0

100.0

8
2

67.7
32 3

184
21. 2
15
60
53
10
46

120
5
46
34
21
14

81

75

1. 6
1.6
8

1 5
1.5
3 4

1.0

.8
9.4

8.7

9.9

100.0

100.0

100.0

56.4
43.6

75.3
24.7

71.3
28.7

65.9
34. 1

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

100.0

6.0
37.5
27.3
14.3
15.0

2.1
39.0
25.9
21. 9
11.2

5.8
37.9
27.5
14.4
14.4

8.8
36.7
28.5
10.2
15.8

9.0
35.3
27.3
6.4
21.9

100.0
8.2
32.6
28.8
5.4
25.0

EM PLO Y M EN T E X P E R IE N C E

Public stenographers and office managers___ Secretaries____
Bookkeepers, accountants, cashiers___________
Stenographers and typists
Clerks, and not classified_________________ _

151
133
115
106
75
493

<r>

20

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

but slightly less than one half (48.1 percent) of those 60 years of age
or older, were teachers.
About 1 in 9 of the total professional group were trained nurses.
The proportions of women thus engaged increased from less than 1 in
12 of those 20 and under 30 to about 1 in 7 of those 50 and under 60.
Only about 1 in 16 of the women of 60 years or more were trained
nurses.
Social and welfare workers formed only about one twentieth of the
total professional group. The proportions increased with age, from
only about 3 percent of those 20 and under 30 to almost 10 percent of
those of 60 years or more.
Librarians, numbering seven tenths as many as the social workers,
also showed increased proportions as age increased. Only about 1
in 40 of the women 20 and under 30, as compared with about 1 in
15 of those 60 years or older, were librarians.
Trade.—Trade, the third largest group, claimed only 5.8 percent
of the youngest members but as many as 18 percent of those 60 years
of age and over. Among women of 30 or more the very large majority
of workers in trade were owners, managers, or buyers, but below 30
not quite one half so reported, and a much larger part than in the
older groups were saleswomen.
Work history

The number of jobs that these women had held may be taken as an
indication of their stability as workers.
Number of jobs.—More than one fourth (26.2 percent) of the 17,610
women reporting the number of jobs in their entire work histories,
had held only 1, and more than one fifth (22.5 percent) had had
only 2. Three tenths (29.9 percent) of the women had had 3 or 4
jobs, and just over one fifth (21.4 percent) had held 5 or more.
About 360 fewer women reported extent of work experience as well
as number of jobs. Almost one fifth (18.8 percent) of those who had
held one job and nearly three tenths (27.9 percent) of those who
had held 2 had been employed 20 years or more. Of the women who
had had 5 or more jobs, close to two fifths (38 percent) had worked
as long as 20 years.
Experience in several jobs naturally was less common among the
women who had worked only a few years and increased among those
with experience of 10 years and more.
'Fable 5.—Number of jobs, by years of experience
Women reporting number of jobs
Total
Total reporting

Years of experience

Number Number
Total

____ __________

Percent

One
Number

Two

Percent

Number

Percent

20,168

17,610

100.0

4,615

26.2

3,967

22.5

Total reporting-----------------------

17,687

17,251

100.0

4, 592

100.0

3,892

100.0

Less than 5.....................................
5 and less than 10 ............... .
_
10 and less than 15 _
__
15 and less than 20
20 and less than 25.__________
25 and less than 30
30 and more
Not reporting years of experi-

2, 527
3,616
3,852
2, 612
2,090
1,476
1,514

2,520
3, 591
3, 769
2,527
2,021
1,401
1,422

14.6
20.8
21.8
14.6
11.7
8.1
8.2

1,338
1,076
876
439
347
258
258

29.1
23.4
19.1
9.6
7.6
5.6
5.6

622
867
786
531
429
311
346

16.0
22.3
20.2
13.6
11.0
8.0
8.9

2,481

359




23

75

21

EMPLOYMENT EXPERIENCE
Table

5.—Number of jobs, by years of experience—Continued
Women reporting number of jobs-—Continued

Years of experience

Three
Number

Five or more

Four

Percent

Number

Percent

Number

Percent

Not re­
porting
number
of jobs
Number

Total_________ _________

3,058

17.4

2,210

12.5

3,760

21.4

2,558

Total reporting. - ------- ---------

2,968

100.0

2,150

100.0

3, 649

100.0

436

Less than 5_
- ________ _____
5 and less than 10
10 and less than 15
15 and less than 20______ _____
20 and less than 25
25 and less than 30.---------- -30 and more___ ___________ _ _ _
Not reporting years of experi-

326
665
659
421
369
249
279

11.0
22.4
22.2
14.2
12.4
8.4
9.4

143
477
543
376
275
189
147

6.7
22.2
25.3
17.5
12.8
8.8
6.8

91
506
905
760
601
394
392

2.5
13.9
24.8
20.8
16.5
10.8
10.7

7
25
83
85
69
75
92

90

60

111

2.122

Since some of the women had had only one job and many had been
engaged in the same occupation though they had changed jobs, a
correlation of present industry and occupation with length of time
worked was made.
Industry and occupation.—In manufacturing, only about 1 in 16
(6.4 percent) had worked less than 5 years, but in domestic and
personal service—winch, the reader is reminded, refers not to house­
work in this case but chiefly to the ownership or management of tea
rooms, restaurants, cleaning establishments, and beauty shops—not
far from 1 in 5 (18.3 percent) had worked less than 5 years. More
than two fifths (43.8 percent) of those in manufacturing had worked
20 years or more, while only one fifth of those in domestic and per­
sonal service reported such experience.
Time in present or last job.—The time these women had worked for
their present or last employer is of interest in considering their stability
as workers. As many as 18,335 women reported on this. For more
than two fifths (42.4 percent) such time was less than 5 years, for
about one fourth (25.7 percent) it was 5 and under 10 years, for one
sixth (16.8 percent) it was 10 and less than 15, and for about one
seventh it was 15 years or longer, well over one half of the last reporting
20 years or more.
Method of securing position

The methods the salaried women had used in securing their jobs
were of interest. Of the 15,000 who reported on this, one third
(33.4 percent) had secured their jobs by personal application.
One fifth (20.2 percent) had had their services sought by a new em­
ployer, and somewhat more (21.8 percent) had secured their jobs
through a friend in the business or because of family influence. Only
9 percent had secured work through employment bureaus: Three
fifths of these were placed by school or college bureaus, about three
tenths by fee-charging employment agencies, and the remainder by
non-fee-charging agencies. The remainder had secured their jobs
. by other means, such as promotion, transfer, or advertisement.




22

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

Supervisory positions

Of the group reporting occupation who stated whether or not they
supervised the work of others—more than 18,000—slightly less than
one half (46.4 percent) reported work of a supervisory nature.
Considered by industry groups, the proportions engaged in
supervisory work varied greatly. More than three fourths (76.9
percent) of those in transportation and communication (an industry
composed chiefly of telegraph and telephone operators) supervised
the work of others, as did almost as large proportions in manufac­
turing and in domestic and personal service—73.8 and 72.6 percent,
respectively, three fifths (60.7 percent) of the women in trade,
somewhat less than this (56.1 percent) in public service, considerably
less than one hklf (44.3 percent) in professional pursuits, and less
than two fifths (38.3 percent) in clerical service and supervisory
positions.
In five industry groups there were owners and managers. In
these occupations, naturally, the proportions holding supervisory
positions were the highest, the one exception being librarians, under
professional service. The proportions ranged from 89.5 percent for
owners and managers under transportation and communication, to
76.2 percent for owners and managers under trade. More than five
sixths (83.9 percent) of the librarians had workers to supervise.
Public stenographers and office managers were supervisors in 81.7
percent of the cases. For the other occupations reported, smaller
proportions of the women did supervisory work, ranging downward
from 74 percent of the social and welfare workers to 17.3 percent of
the stenographers and typists and 14.2 percent of the assistants to
dentists and doctors. Of the largest groups, only 25.9 percent of
the saleswomen, 36.4 percent of the teachers, 38.8 percent of the
secretaries, and 41.4 percent of the bookkeepers, accountants, and
cashiers did any supervising.
Except in clerical work, little difference was noted in the various
industry groups as to the supervision of younger or older women.
Well over half (55.1 percent) of the clerical workers supervised
younger persons. Among the women who had charge of older women,
the proportions ranged from nearly three tenths of the librarians to
almost three fifths of the social and welfare workers.
The question as to whether or not they found their work associates
agreeable was answered by more than 19,000. Almost 98 percent
of these reported in the affirmative. Very little difference appeared
in the correlation with age.
Maximum general education

Much the largest group (43.2 percent) of the more than 18,000
women reporting both occupation and education had completed
high school but had not gone beyond it. The next in rank were the
17.5 percent who had been to college but had not completed the
course. The only industrial group with the largest number report­
ing other than high school was professional service, in which more
than 80 percent had gone beyond high school and 36.3 percent had
completed college.




Table 6.—Maximum general education, by industry and occupation
Not re-

Women reporting maximum general education
Total
Industry and occupation
Num­
ber

Total reporting




Normal school

College incom­
plete

College com­
plete

1,572
8.5

100.0

0.2

2

2.7

128
92
24

0.1
8. 1

2.1

5.9
1.5

12

.8

50
19
31

3.2
1.2

.
12.4
8.3
2.5

386
256

1.6
2.8

30
47
140
7

24.6
16.3
6.4
1.9
3.0
8.9
.4
3.8
.5

1.4
.6

.7

1

36.8
22.6

100

4.0
1.9
1.4

2.0

1.2
.8

.1

.7

7,969
43.2
12
248
193
27
28
160
64
87
9
1,127
'750
262
115
282
1,074
155
393
94
67
78
35

100.0
0.2
3.1
2.4
.3
.4
2.0
.8
1.1
.1
14.1
9.4
3.3
1.4
3.5
13.5
1.9
4.9
1.2
.8
1.0
.4

1.5

.6
.6

.4

2.6

3.1

2.1
1.0

40.7
2.5
15.3
11.1

5.9
6.0

.1
26
141
94
47
678
59
201
210

77
131
187

1.7
9.0
6.0

3.0
43.1
3.8
12.8

13.4
4.9
8.3

5
10
168
269
180
89
4,797
259
1,771
1,329
762
676
494

.1
.1
2.1
3.4
2.3
1.1
60.2
3.3
22.2
16.7
9.6
8.5

2, 638
14.3
2
29
25
2
2
14
6
7
1
223
158
42
23
75
1,642
1,464
47
24
19
21
7
15
3
1
41
51
37
14
602
37
229
157
66
113
66

100.0
0.1
1.1
.9
.1
.1
.5
.2
.3
(0
8.5
6.0
1.6
.9
2.8
62.2
55. 5
1.8
.9
.7
.8
.3
.6
.1
0)
1.6
1.9
1.4
.5
22.8
1.4
8.7
6.0
2.5
4.3

3,237
17.5
9
64
55
4
5
28
17
8
3
386
267
48
71
85
1,465
761
191
104
62
62
42
20
8
55
15
145
76
51
25
1,124
77
473
292
148
13i
149

100.0
0.3
2.0
1.7
.1
.2
.9
.5
.2
.1
11.9
8.2
1.5
2.2
2.6
45.3
23.5
5.9
3.2
1.9
1.9
1.3
.6
.2
1.7
.5
4.5
2.3
1.6
.8
34.7
2.4
14.6
9.0
4.6
4. 1

3,032
16.4
7
21
16
2
3
6
5
i
174
104
16
54
30
2,464
1,776
43

te
104
59
61

107
39
49
101
30
23
7
300
21
143
54
28
54
53

100.0

619

0.2
.7
.5
.1
.1
.2
.2

1
33
25
7
1
6

0)
5.7
3.4
.5
1.8
1.0
81.3
58.6
1.4
4.1
3.4
1.9
2.0
3.5
1.3
1.6
3.3
1.0
.8
.2
9.9
.7
4.7
1.8
.9
1.8
-------- T~

148
96
37
15
20
124
29
21
7
10
5
5

g
“d
F
o
g
H
2
H

E X P E R IE N C E

1 Less than 0.05 percent.

High school

Num­ Percent Num­ Percent Num­ Percent Num­ Percent Num­ Percent Number
ber
ber
ber
ber
ber
________ 771
3,085
3,386
2,704
8,463
1,759

Num­
ber

20, 168 19,397
Total..........
Total reporting:
19,067 18,448
Number-----100.0
Percent____
32
33
Agriculture and extraction of minerals----- --------------------490
523
Manufacturing------------------------------------------ ------------ ----381
406
Owners, managers, officials------- ------------------- ---------59
66
Milliners and dressmakers-------------------------------------50
51
All others-------------------------------- ------------ ---------------258
264
Transportation and communication-----------------------------111
114
Owners, managers, officials------------------------------------ 133
136
Telegraph and telephone operators-------------------------14
14
All others-------------- -------- -------------------------------------2,296
2,444
Trade------- --------------------------- --------- --------------------------1,535
1,631
Owners, managers, officials, buyers-------------------------468
505
Saleswomen------------------------------------------ --------------293
308
All others--------------------------------- -------------------------519
539
Public service (not elsewhere classified)------------------------6,785
6.909
Professional service----------------------------------------------------4,163
4,192
Teachers----------- ------------ ------------------- ------ ----------734
766
Trained nurses--------------- ------ -------- ------ ------------- 355
376
Social and welfare workers------------------------------------256­
263
Librarians------------------------------------- -------------------- 229
239
Editorial and research workers--------------------- -----146
151
Technicians, laboratory assistants, chemists, dietitians
128
133
Dentists’ and doctors’ assistants....... ...............................
115
115
Physicians...............—-----------------------------------------103
106
Osteopaths............. .................. .............................. ..............
75
75
Lawyers---------------------------------- ------------------- -.........
481
493
All others----------------- ------------ ---------------- ------ -----567
595
Domestic and personal service--------- ------ ------------- -----385
403
Owners and managers------------------------------------------182
192
All others------------- ----------------- ----------------------------7, 501
7, 760
Clerical service---------------------------------------------------------453
464
Public stenographers and office managers---------------2.910
2,817
Secretaries_____________ _______ ___ ................ ............
2,042
2,117
Bookkeepers, accountants, cashiers------------------------1,081
1,108
Stenographers and typists--------------- ------------- -------1,108
1,161
Clerks and not classified--------------------------- --------1,101
949
Not reporting industry or occupation---------------------------

Grade school

maximum
general
education

3
12
28
18
10
259
11
93
75
27
53
152

to
CO

24

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

The distribution by industry and occupation of the groups reporting
various degrees of general education differed very much.
The largest proportion in manufacturing was the 8.1 percent who
had attended grade school only. This was in contrast to less than 1
percent of those who were college graduates.
In transportation and communication the figures ranged from 3.2
percent of the grade school group to 0.2 percent of the college
graduates.
Larger proportions than those just discussed were women in trade.
Only about 1 in 18 of the college graduates, as compared with 1 in 4
of those who had attended only grade school, were in trade.
The proportions of the different education groups engaged in pro­
fessional service ranged from 8.9 percent of those who had attended
only grade school to 81.3 percent of the college graduates. Of interest
in this group were the varying proportions of the education groups
who were teaching. Less than one half of 1 percent of the women
who had attended no school higher than a grade school, in contrast
to almost three fifths of the college graduates, were teachers. Only
1 in 50 of those who had attended no school above a high school were
teaching.
One percent of the college graduates, as compared with 9 percent of
those who had attended only grade school, were in domestic and
personal service. The largest proportion in clerical work was the 60.2
percent of the high-school group. Less than one tenth of the college
graduates were so employed.
Relation between job and training

Almost 19,000 of the business and professional women replied to
the inquiry on the questionnaire as to whether they were doing work
for which their training prepared them. More than four fifths of
them (80.4 percent) said they were. Some 18,000 reported the
occupation in which they were engaged.
The largest proportion of women in any industry group reporting
that they were doing work for which their training fitted them was
the 92.8 percent in professional work; the next was the 81.3 percent
in clerical work, followed by 69.4 percent in domestic and personal
service, 65.5 percent in manufacturing, 64.9 percent in public service,
55.1 percent in transportation and communication, and 51.7 percent
in trade.
Outstanding proportions in the occupations under professional
service were physicians and osteopaths, all of whom were in occupa­
tions for which they had been trained, as were more than 90 percent
each of the teachers, trained nurses, lawyers, and librarians, 87.2
percent of those doing scientific laboratory work, 75.3 percent of the
social and welfare workers, 60.4 percent of the editorial and research
workers, and 56.4 percent of the assistants to dentists and doctors.
Among clerical workers a large proportion of the stenographers and
typists and of the secretaries, 94.1 percent and 88.5 percent, re­
spectively, were in work for which their training prepared them.
EMPLOYMENT STATUS

All but about 1,000 (19,162) of the 20,168 women included in the
study, gave information indicating whether they were in business for
themselves or were employed by others. Of the total, 13.6 percent




25

EMPLOYMENT EXPERIENCE

appeared to be independent workers and 86.4 percent salaried women.
This may be considered a. fairly close approximation of such a classi­
fication, but the question was not asked specifically and conflicting
information was not uncommon.
Employment status and age

Salaried and independent workers alike had between 57 and 58
percent of their numbers in the age groups 30 and under 50, and it
was below and above these that the differences appeared. Only
one twelfth of the independent workers, in contrast to almost one
fourth of the salaried workers, were under 30; and just over one third
of the independent workers, in contrast to less than one fifth of those
on a salary basis, were 50 or more. Approximately 1 in 12 of the
independent workers were 60 years of age or older, while only 1 in 25
of the salaried workers were so reported.
Women reporting employment status
Age

Salaried workers
Number

Percent

Independent workers
Number

Percent

Total-------- ---------.........................................................

16,562

86.4

2,600

13.6

Total reporting. ............ -.................... -...................................

16, 316

100.0

2, 539

100.0

50
3,854
5,015
4. 334
2, 408
655
246

0.3
23.6
30.7
26. 6
14.8
4.0

2
207
641
831
634
224
61

0.1
8.2
25.2
32.7
25.0
8.8

Employment status and occupation

When the independent and salaried workers were classified by
industry in which employed, it was found that in some industries they
were practically all on a salary basis. Only in public service, however,
were they all salaried, and in this it was to be expected.
Nearly all those in clerical pursuits (98.9 percent) were on a salary.
Of the women in transportation and communication, just over one
half of whom were telephone or telegraph operators, 95 percent were
salaried workers. The next in rank were the 87.2 percent of the
professional women. The teachers, who formed three fifths of the
professional group, were almost all salaried workers, and the social
and welfare workers and librarians were all salaried.
Besides the owner-or-inanager groups, only nurses, doctors, and
lawyers had large proportions of independent workers.
Employment status and maximum general education

About 1 in 13 (7.5 percent) of the more than 16,000 salaried workers
had attended no school higher than the grades. Well over two fifths
(43.6 percent) had been to high school, not far from one sixth (15.3
percent) to normal school, practically one sixth (16.9 percent) had
been to college but had not graduated, and exactly one sixth were
college graduates.




26

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

Nearly one sixth of the 2,451 independent workers reporting had
attended grade school only, two fifths had been to high school and
about 1 in 13 to normal school, just over 1 in 5 had been to college
but had not graduated, and 1 in 7 had graduated from college.
Employment status and special training

Only 27.7 percent of the independent workers had had business
training, and only 11.4 percent teacher’s training, but as many as
18.9 percent, in contrast to only 3.2 percent of the salaried workers,
had had training in nursing.
The remaining groups.were small. In all cases but one there was
more training among the independent than among the salaried workers.
. Viewed from another angle, of those who had had special training
m medicine, law, or nursing the proportions who were independent
workers were respectively 88 percent, 56.7 percent, and 45.7 percent.
UNEMPLOYMENT

Some facts regarding the unemployment of women during the
10-year period ended December 31, 1930, have been made available.
Of more than 20,000 women whose work histories for all or part of
this period were secured, almost one half (45.6 percent) had had one
job only; of the remainder, about equal parts had had steady employ­
ment and had suffered some unemployment.
Of the approximately'12,500 women who reported a possible work
history extending over the entire 10-year period and had jobs on
December 31, about 5 in 8 (62 percent) had been employed the
entire 10 years. Practically one fourth (25.4 percent) had been
employed 8 and under 10 years, and almost one tenth (8.9 percent)
5 and under 8 years. The remainder, well below 5 percent, had worked
less than 5 years of the possible 10-year period.
Of the 223 who were out of a job on the last day of December, and
who had had a possible work history of 10 years, about two fifths
(41.3 percent) had been employed 9 and less than 10 years, indicating
that they had lost their jobs within the past year. About one fourth
(24.7 percent) had worked 8 and less than 9 years, and practically
another one fourth (26 percent) 5 and less than 8 years. About
7 percent had worked less than 5 of the possible 10 years.
It must be remembered in this connection that unemployment
was from personal as well as industrial causes.
In comparing the proportion of women in this study who were
unemployed on December 31, 1930, with the proportion of the 1,889
women in the study of the American Woman’s Association reported
as unemployed on February 1, 1931,2 the first mentioned is seen to
be smaller—3.3 percent as compared with 6.2 percent. Since the
dates differed by only 1 month, this difference probably is due
largely to the fact that the women in the American Woman’s Asso­
ciation study were employed in New York City, while those in the
present study were from all parts of the country, in many of which
the effects of unemployment had not been so generally felt.
’The Trained Woman and the Economic Crisis, American Woman’s Association, New York, 1931, pp. 11
ana i^»




27

EMPLOYMENT EXPERIENCE

Cause of latest unemployment

Three thousand and twenty-six oi the 5,535 women who had been
unemployed at some time during the 10-year period reported the
cause of their latest unemployment. About one half (48.9 percent)
of these had become unemployed because ol marriage, further school­
ing, or a desire for leisure; about one fourth (24.6 percent) were out
of work because of other personal reasons, such as illness of self or
illness of others; and somewhat more than one fourth (26.5 percent)
were unemployed because no good job or no job at all was available.
It is the group of unemployed last described that has become a matter
of increasing concern.
Unemployment, 1921-30

Percent

20,168

27.0

9,193

45.6

5,535

27.4

Cause of latest
unemployment

100.0

6,440
1 job only during this period___

Number

Number

Percent

3,026
Good position not available
or no work.
Education, leisure, and marriage.
Illness of self, death or ill­
ness of others, pressing
home duties.

100.0

801

26.5

1,480

48.9

745

24.6

At the time the study was made, conditions of employment were
steadily becoming worse. Not far from one tenth (8.4 percent) of
the women reporting had been unemployed at some time in the 2
years 1929 and 1930. However, on the last day of the 10-year period,
December 31, 1930, only about 3 percent of all the women were out
of work.
Reason for leaving last job

As already mentioned, a very large proportion of the women were
still in their first jobs. As regards reasons for leaving jobs, a tabula­
tion was made of those reported for the last jobs from which there
had been separations. In more than one third of these cases the
opening of a better opportunity caused the separation. Almost one
fourth of the changes were because of personal reasons—marriage,
family, and other things. More than 1 in 6 were because of dissatis­
faction with conditions, inadequate pay, or lack of advancement or
interest. In about 1 in 8 cases the cause was dissolution of business,
change in management, discontinuance or consolidation of one depart­
ment with another, or a merger with another concern. The remainder
were discharges for some other reason, among which may be mentioned
a reduction in force because of the business depression or the abolition
of the job due to new inventions or radically changed methods.

34014°—34-----5




Part IV.—YEAR’S EARNINGS

Of great importance to the business or professional woman, as to
all other gainfully occupied persons, is the amount she is able to earn.
In this study the earnings for one year were used as the basis for analy­
sis, as it is on these that the woman with no additional income must
budget herself for the year. Some women, but not a large proportion,
had an income in addition to their salaries.
In the section of the questionnaire in which the women filled in
their work histories for the 10 years ending December 31, 1930, they
gave a year’s earnings. For those who were unemployed at the close
of this period, the year’s earnings on their last jobs were used, while
for those employed at this time the earnings were those on the job or
jobs held during the calendar year 1930. Actual earnings have been
tabulated and average earnings (the quartileand median1) computed
for all the women reporting their salaries or their incomes from
independent business.
Many factors, some more significant than others, such as age,
schooling, special training, marital status, length of work experience,
and size of community, have been correlated with earnings to show
their trend and significance.
Actual earnings, regardless of any factor contributing to making
them what they were, and their variation, will be discussed first.
After this, certain of the measurable factors and conditions will be
related to earnings.
Throughout this section it must be borne in mind that mental
ability, and will and temperament to some extent, affect the earning
power of individuals. Naturally, no attempt has been made to
measure the mental ability of women in this questionnaire type of
survey. Had it been possible to give a standard intelligence test,
variations in intelligence quotients, commonly spoken of as “I.Q.’s,”
would have proved enlightening, as would vocational, aptitude, and
other tests.
Another thing to be borne in mind is the fact that the practice in
the Women’s Bureau reports is to base percentages on the total
reporting,which differs considerably for the various matters of inquiry.
As already mentioned, wherever possible the tabulations for this
study have been made similar to those of the earnings study written at
the University of Michigan. Thus comparisons can be made of the
earnings reported in the two studies. In general, earnings are higher
in the present report than in the Michigan study. It must be re­
membered that many women probably were included in both studies,
and a similarity in the proportions earning specific amounts is plain.
With few exceptions, the incomes that the women received for
their labors, whether they were salaried or independent workers,
were not high. Three fifths (60.5 percent) of the 15,718 who reported
year’s earnings had earned $1,000 and less than $2,000. These
were almost evenly divided (29.9 and 30.6 percent) above and below
the $1,500 point.
1 For definition see footnote 6 on p. 4.

28




29

YEAR’S EARNINGS

Less than one eighth (12.3 percent) had incomes below $1,000, and
more than one fourth (27.2 percent) earned at least $2,000, the great
majority of these, however (19.8 percent of the total), earning between
$2,000 and $3,000.
The highest earnings were $25,000, reported by two women—a
physician and an official of an insurance company. Other high earn­
ings were $20,000 for an owner under manufacturing; $15,000 for a
physician, the owner of a private school, and an owner under trade;
$14,000 for a doctor of osteopathy; $13,000 for the head of a busi­
ness school; $12,000 for a physician, the owner of a toilet-goods
factory, and the secretary and general counsel of a manufacturing
company; and $11,000 for a lawyer in her own office These and
other high earnings will be discussed later in the report.
The median earnings were $1,625 for the 15,718 women reporting
earnings. The lower quartile earnings of the total group were $1,210,
and the upper quartile earnings were $2,075. In other words,
about one fourth of the women had earned $100 or less a month,
and another one fourth had earned approximately $175 or more.
Earnings and employment status

More than 19,000 of the 20,168 women indicated their employ­
ment status. Almost seven eighths of these were salaried and more
than one eighth (13.6 percent) were independent workers.
Table 7.—Year’s earnings, by employment status
Total

Women reporting employment status

Total
reporting

Year’s earnings
Num­
ber

Salaried
workers

Per­
cent
Num­
ber

Per­
cent

Num­
ber

Total...... .........................

20,168

19,162

16,562

Total reporting..........................

15, 718

100. 0 16, 581

100.0 14,416

Less than $1,000___________
$1,000 and less than $1,500_
_
$1,500 and less than $2,000_
_
$2,000 and less than $3,000___
$3,000 and more____________
Not reporting year’s earnings

1,933
4, 705
4,807
3,120
1,153
4,450

Per­
cent

First Quartile______________
Median..._______ _________
Third quartile_____________

12.3
29.9
30.6
19.8
7.3

1,913
4,669
4, 768
3,090
1,141
3,581

12.3
30.0
30.6
19.8
7.3

1,829
4,474
4, 457
2,828
828
2,146

Not
report­
ing
em­
Independent ployworkers
ment
status

Num­
ber

Per­
cent

Num­
ber
1,006

2,600

13.6

100.0

1,165

100.0

12.7
31.0
30.9
19.6
5.7

84
195
311
262
313
1,435

7.2
16.7
26.7
22.5
26.9

$1,210

$1,210

$1,200

1,625
2,075

1,625
2,070

2,010

1,600

20

36
39
30
12

869

$1,520
1,990
3,135

Among the 1,165 independent workers, great differences in earn­
ings were noted. As many as 26.9 percent of these, as compared with
only 5.7 percent of the salaried workers, earned $3,000 or more. A
considerably smaller proportion of the independent workers, 7.2 per­
cent as compared with 12.7 percent of the salaried women, earned less
than $1,000, and only 16.7 percent as compared with 31 percent of the
salaried workers had earned $1,000 and less than $1,500. As regards
earnings of $1,500 and under $3,000, salaried and independent workers
differed less.




30

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

Chart 1. EARNINGS DISTRIBUTION FOR SALARIED AND FOR INDEPENDENT
WORKERS
Salaried workers

Independent workers

Per cent
Less than *1,000

11,000, less than *1,600

*1,500, less than *2,000

*2,000, less than *3,000

*3,000, less than *5,000

*5,000 and over

Earnings and age

Only 200 women who reported their earnings failed to report age as
well. For all the age groups but under 20 years, enough women for
purposes of comparison reported age and earnings.
Chart 2. FIRST QUARTILE, SECOND QUARTILE (MEDIAN), AND THIRD
QUARTILE EARNINGS, BY AGE

$1,600

$1,000




_ . _ First quartile
■
■.1 Median
■■
Third quartile

of

a g

Table 8.— Year’s

earnings, by age

[Average earnings and percents not computed where base is less than 50]
Women reporting age
Total

Total
reporting

Year's earnings
Num­
ber

Percent

Number
19, 793

Percent

30 and under
40 years
Number

Percent

40 and under
50 years
Number

Percent

50 ana under
60 years
Number

Percent

60 years and
over
Number

Not
report­
ing age
(number)

Percent

Total reporting.

15,718

100.0

15, 519

100.0

111
1,822
4, 705
4,807
2,334
786
488
240
185
120
120
4,450

0.7
11.6
29.9
30.6
14.8
5.0
3.1
1.5
1.2
.8
.8

108
809
638
741
309
782
478
238
180
118
118
274

0.7
11.7
29.9
30.5
14.9
5.0
3.1
1.5
1.2
.8
.8

$1,210

$1,210

1,625
2,075

1,625
2,075

Number

Number
4,249

38

3, 623

100.0

4,834

100.0

4,157

100.0

2,303

100.0

564

100.0

199

36
914
1,685
773
161
36
6
7
4
1

1.0
25.2
46.5
21.3
4.4
1.0
.2
.2
.1
w

20
373
1,476
1,764
719
224
126
45
36
28
23
1,038

0.4
7.7
30.5
36.5
14.9
4.6
2.6
.9
.7
.6
.5

22
272
891
1,397
849
290
179
96
70
48
43
1,280

0.5
6.5
21.4
33.6
20.4
7.0
4.3
2.3
1.7
1.2
1.0

13
165
466
656
487
186
128
74
55
32
41
928

0.6
7.2
20.2
28.5
21.1
8.1
5.6
3.2
2.4
1.4
1.8

9
58
117
151
93
46
39
16
15
9
11
386

1.6
10.3
20.7
26.8
16.5
8.2
6.9
2.8
2.7
1.6
2.0

3
13
67
66
25
4
10
2
5
2
2
176

626
6975
1,255
1, 555

3,231

5,437

5,872

$i. 275
1,655
2,000

$1, 420
1,820
2,315

950

$i, 425
1,885
2,440

375

Y E A R ’S

20,168

First quartile.
Median_____
Third quartile.

20 and under
30 years

54

Percent

Total___

Less than $500........... ................
$500 and less than $1,000------$1,000 and less than $1,500----$1,500 and less than $2,000___
$2,000 and less than $2,500----$2,500 and less than $3,000___
$3,000 and less than $3,500---$3,500 and less than $4,000---$4,000 and less than $5,000----$5,000 and less than $6,000----$6,000 and more____________
Not reporting year's earnings.

Under
20 years

>

I
(M
21
a
CD

$i, 315
1,825
2, 475

> Less than 0.05 percent.




CO

32

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

As was true of the whole number, the largest proportion of every
group of 30 years and over had earnings of $1,500 and less than $2,000.
The largest proportion (46.5 percent) of the women 20 and under 30
had earned $1,000 and less than $1,500. All but 3 of the 38 girls under
20 had earned less than $1,000.
More than one fourth (26.9 percent) of the women under 30 years
of age had earned less than $1,000. No other group approaches this,
the next in rank being the women of 60 years and over, with only 11.9
percent who had such earnings. The other age groups had only 7 or
8 percent of the women earning less than $1,000.
As would be expected, larger proportions of the older than of the
younger women were in the higher earnings groups. One in 5 of the
women of 40 years and over, in contrast to 1 in 25 of those under 30
years, had earned $2,000 and less than $2,500. About 9 percent (8.8)
of the women of 50 years or more, in contrast to less than 2 percent
(1.7) of those under 40 years, had earned $3,500 and over.
The median of the earnings increased with the age of the women,
naturally more sharply among the younger groups. The lowest
median was $1,255 for the women 20 and under 30 years; the highest
was $1,885 for those 50 and under 60 years, an increase of 50.2 percent.
For the women of 60 and over the median declined by $60, to $1,825.
The lower quartile of earnings does not rise so rapidly with age as
does the median. However, the upper quartile of earnings rises most
rapidly, indicating that the rise in average earnings with age is due
not so much to the increase in all women’s earning capacity as to the
rapid increase in earnings of the most successful group.
This does not mean that age and experience as such are not recog­
nized, because the less successful women at 50 or even 60 years and
over are earning decidedly more (46 and 35 percent, respectively)
than the lower paid women of 20 to 30 years. This is as it should be,
for at the earlier age—when all are more or less beginners—individual
aptitudes have not been demonstrated and variations between individ­
uals are not so great as demonstrated by the range in earnings (the
difference between the lower and upper quartile) at 20 to 30 years
and at 60 years and over, $580 and $1,160, respectively.
Earnings and experience

More than two fifths (42.1 percent) of the women who had worked
less than 10 years had earnings of $1,000 and under $1,500. After
experience of 20 years or more only about one sixth (17.2 percent) had
such earnings, most women reporting incomes well above those figures.
The greatest advances appear to have come after 5 years of experi­
ence. Earnings below $1,000 were reported by 35.4‘percent of the
women with experience of less than 5 years, but by only 15.2 percent
of those who had worked 5 and under 10 years. Conversely, earnings
of $l,500_and under $2,000 were reported by only 15 percent of the
women with less than 5 years’ experience but by 30.3 percent of those
who had worked 5 and under 10 years. For the remaining experience
groups the differences in earnings were small compared to these.




Table 9.— Year’s earnings, by years of experience
Women reporting years of experience

Year’s earnings

Total
num­
ber

Total
reporting
Num­
ber

Total reporting—

15, 033

Less than $1,000
$1,000 and less than $1,500
$1,500 and less than $2,000_-------------------$2,000 and less than $3,000----------------------$3,000 and more------------------------------------Not reporting year’s earnings-------- -------

1,933
4,705
4, 807
3,120
1,153
4,450

First quartile ................................................. $1,210
Median------ ------------------------------------- - 1,625
Third quartile..... .............................................. 2,075




Per­
cent

100.0

1,851
4,523
4,597
2,985
1,077
2, 654
$1,2 10
1,6 25
2,0 70

12.3
30.1
30.6
19.9
7.2

2,182
773
948
327
103
31
345

Num­
ber

Per­
cent

100.0
35.4
43.4
15.0
4.7
1.4

$ 845
1, 170
1, 455

3,190
485
1,313
966
346
80
426

Num­
ber

Per­
cent

100.0
15.2
41.2
30.3
10.8
2.5

$1, 120
1, 425
1, 810

3, 288
260
1,013
1,194
632
189
564

Num­
ber

Per­
cent

100.0
7.9
30.8
36.3
19.2
5.7

$1, 275
1, 655
2, 000

2,189
128
529
777
569
186
423

Num­
ber

Per­
cent

100.0
5.8
24.2
35. 5
26.0
8.5

$1, 395
1, 780
2, 240

1,714
91
306
605
514
198
376

Num­
ber

Per­
cent

2,481

100.0

1,514
1,24Y 100.0

4.2
16.9
31.6
31.8
15.6

5.1
16.7
27.4
34.6
16.3

82
182
210
135
76
1,796

1,476

2,090

2,612

3,852

3,616

2,527

17,687

------------------------------ 15, 718

Num­
ber

Not
report­
ing
30 years and
experi­
more
ence
(num­
ber)
Num­ Per­
ber
cent

25 and less
20 and less
15 and less
10 and less
5 and less
than 10 years than 15 years than 20 years than 25 years than 30 years

100.0
5.3
17.9
35.3
30.0
11.6

$1, 525
1,880
2, 390

1,228
51
207
388
391
191
248

$1, 565
1,960
2,490

63
207
340
430
202
272

$1, 560
2,020
2, 575

685

Y E A R ’S E A R N IN G S

20,168

Per­
cent

Less than 5
years

00

oo

34

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

The middle 50 percent of the women who had worked less than 5
years had earned between $845 and $1,455, a range of $610. This
range increased with experience until for women who had worked
30 years or more the figures were $1,560 and $2,575, a difference of
$1,015, two thirds greater than for the group of least experience.
Earnings and marital status

Comparing the single and married women, 41.7 percent of the
former and 47.1 percent of the latter had earnings under $1,500, and
27.4 percent of the former and 23.6 percent of the latter had earnings
of $2,000 and over. Married women’s earnings varied generally from
$1,160 to $1,975, single women’s from $1,220 to $2,080. The varia­
bility was about the same but the earnings of the single women were
consistently higher.
When correlated with age, even greater differences present them­
selves. Only in the age group 20 and under 30 years do the single
women’s average earnings tend to fall below those of other women.
In the four other age groups, single women have much the highest
amounts, the only exception being in the oldest group, where the most
highly paid married women earned $600 more than did the most
highly paid single women.
Table

10.— Year’s earnings, by marital status and age
Women reporting marital status
Total
Total
num­ reporting
ber

Year’s earnings

Single

Separated
Widowed or divorced

Married

Num­ Per­ Num­ Per­ Num­ Per­ Num­ Per­ Num­ Per­
ber cent ber cent ber cent ber cent ber cent
20,108 20, 095
Total reporting---------

3,636

13,555

1,710

1,194

---------- 15, 718 15,681 100.0 11,224 100.0 2,423 100.0 1,132 100.0

Less than $1,000.. _____ ...
$1,000 and less than $1,500___ _
$1,500 and less than $2,000
$2,000 and less than $3,000
$3,000 and more.. . _________
Not reporting year's earnings...

1,933
4,705
4,807
3,120
1,153
4,450
$1, 210
1,625
2,075

Age

1,927
4, 694
4, 798
3,113
1,149
4,414

12.3
29. 9
30.6
19.8
7.4

$1,210
1,625
2. 075

1, 329
3, 353
3,463
2. 316
763
2,331

11.8
29.9
30.9
20.6
6.8

358
784
708
401
172
1,213

$1,220
1, 635
2.080

14.8
32.4
29.2
16. 5
7. 1

$1,160
1,550
1. 975

Single

129
320
329
233
121
578

11.4
28.3
29.1
20.6
10.7

$1, 240
l’ 680
2. 200

Married

Not
report­
ing
mari­
tal
status
(num­
ber)
73

902 100.0

37

111
237
298
163
93
292

6
11
9
7
4
36

12.3
26.3
33.0
18.1
10.3

$1, 240
l’ 675
2' 120

Widowed

Separated
or divorced

First quartile of earnings
$1,220

1 Not computed; base less than 50.




$1,160

$1, 240

$1,240

970
1,305
1, 515
1,540
1,430

1,035
1,195
1,205
1,235
1,135

0)
1,215
1,295
1,230
1, 235

905
1,235
1,370
1,385

0)

35

YEAR’S EARNINGS
Table 10.— Year’s earnings, hy marital status and age—Continued

Age

Single

Married

Widowed

Separated
or divorced

Median of earnings
Total...............................................................................

$1,635

$1,550

$1,680

$1, 675

20 and under 30 years..............................................................
30 and under 40 years_____________________________
40 and under 50 years
50 and under 60 years____________ _______________
60 years and over ______________________ -.......

1,245
1,675
1,880
1,960
1,895

1,330
1,585
1,635
1,720
1,750

(')
1,615
1,710
1,695
1,700

1,285
1,620
1,765
1,860

w

Third quartile of earnings
Total........................................ ................................ .......

$2,080

$1,980

$2,195

$2,120

20 and under 30 years________ ____________ _____ _
30 and under 40 years...........................................................- 40 and under 50 years
50 and under 60 years
60 years and over_____ ______________ _______ _______

1,520
2,020
2,360
2,490
2,475

1,705
1,970
2,105
2,315
3,075

(■)
1,990
2,210
2, 275
2,355

1,745
1,950
2, 280
2, 430

o

1 Not computed; base less than 50.

In general, the greatest differences in earnings were found among
the lower paid women as measured by the first quartile, but in certain
occupations there is great contrast among the higher paid, the third
or upper quartile being several hundred dollars higher for single than
for married women in the case of owners and managers in trade,
trained nurses, and teachers. A contributing factor undoubtedly is
that proportionally more married than single women are employed in
small towns.
For all groups but the widowed women, the median earnings in­
creased steadily as years of experience increased. For the widows
the median increased up to 20 years of experience and the maximum
was for the group whose experience was 30 years and more. (The
drop in earnings for the intervening groups can hardly be considered
significant in view of the number of cases involved.)
Earnings and living arrangements

The influence of income on living arrangements is clear. One fourth
of the women with earnings of less than $1,000, in contrast to almost
one half of those who earned $2,000 or more, maintained their own
homes. Similarly, 16 percent of those with earnings below $1,000,
but only 1.4 percent of those earning $2,000 or more, lived with
parents or other relatives without sharing expenses.
The practice of living in boarding or rooming houses is less affected
by income, probably because of the wide variation in standards and
costs. One eighth of the women with earnings under $1,000, one
fifth of the group earning $1,000 and under $2,000, and one sixth with
earnings of $2,000 or more lived in boarding or rooming houses.
The sharing of accommodations, including the sharing of expenses,
was much the most common practice except among the women with
the highest earnings. Only about one third (34.5 percent) of the
women earning $2,000 or more, in contrast to between 45 and 47
percent of those with lower earnings, lived with relatives or friends
and shared expenses.




36

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

In each case, when the group earning $2,000 and more is further
divided, those earning as much as $3,000 show still more the great
influence of earnings.
Table 11.— Year’s

earnings, by living arrangements
Women reporting year’s earnings

Total reporting

Living arrangements

Less than $1,000 and $2,000 and $3,000 and
less than less than
$1,000
more
$2,000
$3,000

si
Total

20,168 15, 718

9,512

3,120

1,153

Total reporting 19, 667 15,440 100.0 $1,630 1,879 100.0 9,357

3,077

1,127

Maintaining own home
With parents or relatives:
Sharing expenses
Not sharing expenses
With friends, sharing expenses.
Boarding or rooming house___
Not reporting living arrange­
ments—number

1,933

7,433 5,334 34.5 $1,800

462 24.6 2,857 30.5 1,330 43.2

6,606 5,572 36.1
960
751 4.9
1,183
997 6.5
3,485 2,786 18.0

825 43.9 3,659 39.1
301 16.0 390 4.2
53 2.8 581 6.2
238 12.7 1,870 20.0

501

278

1,500
1,145
1,795
1,625

54

155

850 27.6
52 1.7
285 9.3
560 18.2

4,450
4, 227
60.8 2,099

238 21.1 1,034
8
.7 209
6.9 186
118 10.5 699

78

223

About 1 in 12 of the 5,334 who maintained their own homes and
reported earnings, earned less than $1,000, and about 1 in 8 had earn­
ings of $3,000 or more. If size of city had been correlated with
earnings and mode of living, no doubt it would have been found that
the women who maintained homes on incomes of less than $1,000
lived in the smaller cities where expenses were less.
About 1 in 7 of the 5,572 women who reported living with their
parents or other relatives and sharing expenses, had earnings below
$1,000, and only 1 in 25 earned $3,000 or more.
As would be expected, the women who reported living with parents
or relatives and paying nothing were almost wholly in the lower
earnings groups. Two fifths earned less than $1,000 and more than
one half earned between $1,000 and $2,000. Of the 751 women,
only 8 had earnings of $3,000 or more.
About 1,000 women reported that they lived with friends and
shared expenses. This practice, like the maintenance of a home, was
least common in the group with the lowest earnings, followed by the
group with the highest earnings. Only about 1 in 20 earned less than
$1,000 and less than one twelfth $3,000 or more.
Of the almost 2,800 who lived in boarding or rooming houses, one
woman in 12 earned less than $1,000 and about 1 in 25, $3,000 or more.
The largest proportion of the single women, almost one half, lived
with their parents or with other relatives, the majority sharing the
expenses. Almost equal proportions—roughly one fifth in each
case—lived in boarding or rooming houses or maintained their own
homes. The remaining 8 percent made their homes with friends,
paying their share of expenses.
Among the single women the median earnings were the lowest
($1,150) for those who lived with parents or relatives without paying
their expenses, and were the highest ($1,980) for those who maintained
their own homes.




YEAR’S EARNINGS

37

Among the married women, almost 7 in 8 maintained homes. The
median earnings of these women were much less than those of the
corresponding groups of single or other women—$1,590. A smaller
proportion of married women than of any of the other marital groups
made their homes with their parents or relatives.
Earnings and family responsibility

Though proportionally fewer of the women with family responsi­
bilities are in the lower earnings groups, no group has escaped. Well
over one half of the women earning less than $1,000 had dependents.
A man is discouraged from taking on family responsibilities until he
can demonstrate his ability to provide adequately. A woman
inherits responsibilities aside from her own choice and must develop
and exercise her earning ability to meet them.
In all the various sizes of communities the women who had depend­
ents had higher median earnings than those without dependents.
For each group the median increased steadily with size of city. For
the women with dependents, the median was $1,415 in towns of less
than 5,000 population and $2,220 in cities of 100,000 or more. For
the women without dependents, the median was $1,305 in the smallest
cities and $2,035 in the largest.
Earnings and general education

General education has been classified in the 10 groups following:
Grade school; high school incomplete; high school complete; normal
school incomplete; normal school complete; college incomplete;
bachelor’s degree; bachelor’s degree and graduate work; master’s
degree; and doctor’s degree.
Three fifths of all women earned $1,000 and less than $2,000. Of
those who had attended grade school, high school, normal school,
and college, whether they had completed their studies or not, the
proportions earning $1,000 and less than $2,000 ranged from 68.7
percent to 57.7 percent. Decidedly smaller proportions of those
who had done some graduate work, as well as of those who had
received a master’s degree, 44.1 and 25.5 percent respectively, had
earned only $1,000 and less than $2,000.
_
Approximately one fifth of the total group and one fifth to one sixth
of the 6 groups ranging through “college incomplete” had earned
$2,000 and less than $3,000. More than one fourth with bachelors’
degrees and almost one half with masters’ degrees had earned this
much.
The proportions earning $3,000 and more also were highest for those
with degrees. For the women with a master’s degree and those with
a bachelor’s degree and graduate work, the figures were respectively
27.2 and 22.8 percent, in contrast to proportions varying from 2.8 to
8.7 percent for the less advanced groups. Of the 30 women with a
doctor’s degree, 19 were earning $3,000 and more.
Less than 5 percent of those with a bachelor’s degree, and only 1.2
percent of those with a master’s degree, earned less than $1,000,
though the other educational groups had from 10.7 to 16 percent in
this low earnings class.
Average earnings varied with different educational attainments, not
always increasing with added years of schooling. As goes without
saying, this may be explained by other factors, such as age and length
of experience.




38

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

Chart 3. FIRST QUARTILE. SECOND QUARTILE (MEDIAN), AND THIRD
QUARTILE EARNINGS, BY GENERAL EDUCATION

First quartile
Median
Third quartile

Table 12.— Year's earnings, by maximum general education
[Averages and percents not computed where base is less than 50]

Maximum general education

Percent of women
Total
reporting earnings
Not re­
report­
port­
Total
ing
ing
First
(num­ earn­
$1,000 $2,000
earn­ quar­
ber)
ings Less and and $3,000 ings
tile
(num­ than less less and (num­
ber) $1,000 than than more ber)
$2,000 $3,000

Total- ------- --------- ------20,168 15,718
Total reporting. _______
19, 397 15,315
Grade school-- ----------------------1,759 1,175
High school incomplete ______
2, 775 2,099
High school complete___________
5,688 4, 572
Normal school incomplete i- ----1,682 1,366
Normal school complete 1..............
1,022
891
College incomplete_____________
3,386 2,602
Bachelor’s degree ____________
2,423 2,045
Bachelor’s degree and graduate
work____________________ ...
151
127
Master’s degree . _....- -_________
476
408
35
30
Not reporting maximum genera 1
771
403
1 See note to table 3.




12.3
12.2
14.9
12.7
16.0
15.1
10.7
11.1
4.7

60.5
60.7
57.7
60.7
63.4
65.2
68.7
60.0
59.2

19.8
19.8
18.9
19.8
15.3
16.9
16.3
20.5
27.5

7.3
7.3
8.5
6.8
5.3
2.8
4.4
8.5
8.7

4.7
1.2

44.1
25.5

28.3
46.1

22.8
27.2

24
68
5

15.6

55.3

20.6

8.4

368

Me­ Third
dian quar­
tile

4,450 $1,210 $1, 625 $2, 075
4,082 1,215 1,630 2,070
584 1,175 1,610 2,080
676 1,210 1,630 2,050
1,116 1,140 1,520 1,930
316 1,140 1, 485 1.910
131 1,190 1,525 1,930
784 1, 230 1,645 2,130
378 1,425 1,805 2,270
1,610
1,955

2, 035
2, 470

2.910
3,085

YEAR’S EARNINGS

39

The variation in earnings of the middle 50 percent of the women
whose maximum general education was reported, as measured by the
differences between the first and third quartiles, was least for those
who had completed normal school, $740, and greatest for those who
held a bachelor’s degree and had had some graduate work, $1,300.
The differences among the women with earnings below average were
not great until after a degree wTas attained, but a marked difference
was noted between those with a bachelor’s and those_ with a master’s
degree. Likewise, the variation in the average (median) was limited
until the women with bachelors’ and masters’ degrees were compared.
The same situation prevailed even among the women with earnings
above average, where the difference was most striking.
. _
If normal school be regarded as special instead of general training,
the lowest earnings were for the group with high school complete.
The somewhat higher amounts for the women with less schooling than
high school complete doubtless result from the greater age and experi­
ence of the groups who quit school when standards were not so exacting
as in recent years.
_
In each education group the median was lowest for the women 20
and under 30 and highest for those 50 and under 60, the differences
ranging from $490 for those with only grade-school education to $845
for those with college complete.
.
In each age group the highest earnings were for women with college
complete, and in four of the five groups those with college incomplete
ranked next. Among the older women, where differences in experi­
ence were not so marked, the grade-school group had the lowest
medians; belowr 40, the normal-school group had somewhat the lowest
earnings.
.
.
Great differences were found in median earnings for women widely
separated educationally or by age. For example, those of 50 and
under 60 years who had completed college had median earnings $625,
or 36.4 percent, higher than those of women with only grade-school
education. On the other hand, the women of 20 and under 30 years
whose college education was complete had median earnings only $270,
or 22 percent, higher than those for the grade-school group.
The maximum amounts earned by various groups are of interest to
business and professional women. For this reason the maximum earn­
ings of women of certain ages and educational attainments are shown
here. Although some women had earnings of only a few hundred
dollars, they are not objects of social or economic concern, as their
income usually is supplemented by other sources. Because of this
such earnings are grouped in this study as less than $1,000.
The highest earnings of any woman 20 and under 30 years of age
were $5,000, reported by a college graduate. On the other hand,
women in this age group who had gone no further than grade school,
and even the normal-school groups, had no representative who earned
more than $3,500.
,.
.
In the next age group, 30 and under 40 years, the highest earnings
were $14,000, reported by a woman who had had some graduate work
in college. The maximum for women of these ages who had had
grade-school education only was $5,200.




40

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

Chart 4.

MEDIAN EARNINGS, BY GENERAL EDUCATION AND AGE

Grade school
High school
Normal school
College incomplete
College complete

Tears

age

Median earnings, by age and maximum general education

1
a
3
£

Total........... .........

20,168 15,519 3, 623

Total reporting________

19,397 15,137 3, 576

Grade school____
High school___________
Normal school2_ ____
_
College incomplete.. _
College complete___
Not reporting maximum
general education______
----------------------------------

1,759
8, 463
2,704
3, 386
3,085
771

s
CQ
05 M
—
G be
.a ^
ro'~l
9
£

30 and
under 40
years

40 and
under 50
years
i

G
h

i-i
03
£

u
9
£
0>
s

Z
4,834
4, 751 -

£

G to
.2 S
'cf
©
£

47

83

£

G
H
03
OJ r„
G So
ce G

Z

3

CD

4,157

2,303

4,044 ■■■

2,204

1,164
84 $1, 225 343 $1, 540 409 $1,700
6,601 1, 795 1,205 2,004 1,610 1, 712 1, 775
2, 235 534 1,190 675 1,500 577 1,725
2, 564 562 1,260 783 1,650 712 1, 845
2, 573 601 1,495 946 1,905 634 2,145
382

50 and
under 60
years

........ .

113

G
1

J9

§
3
&

9
£

564
=

261 $1, 715
876 1, 845
355 1,820
393 1,940
319 2,340
99

60 years
and over

525

ings (number)

20 and
under 30
years

ber) i

T otal reporting (num ­

T otal (num ber)

Maximum general
education

i

Women reporting age and earnings

N ot reporting age and earn ­

Table 13.

4,649
=

4, 260

66 $1, 630 595
182 1,840 1,862
92 1,760 469
112 1, 830 822
73 2,295 512
39

389

1 Total includes 38 women under 20 years, not shown separately.
2 See note to table 3.
*

Maximum earnings in the group aged 40 and under 50 were $20,000,
reported by a high-school graduate. Strange to say, in this age group
the women with college complete and those with'college incomplete
had no representative earning more than $10,000.
The highest earnings among all those reported were $25,000 for
one woman between 50 and 60 years with normal-school training and
tor another past 60 years holding a master's degree.




YEAR’S EARNINGS

41

The maximum earnings noted are interesting and enlightening as
showing what the unusual woman can do, but such cases do not
contradict any of the tendencies noted on preceding pages.
_
The median earnings for the women of various educational attain­
ments and years of experience (14,664 women reporting) were found
to increase within each schooling group as the years of experience
increased. There was only one exception to this.
For the other four education groups the difference in the median
earnings between least and most experience varied from $760 for
women with grade-school education, followed closely by $770 for those
with normal-school training, to $1,000 for women who had completed
college. The absolute increase for those who had completed college
and those who had attended high school differs by only $15, but it
represents an advance of 96 percent in the case of women who had
attended high school in contrast to only 69 percent for the college
graduates. Experience does compensate to some extent for lack of
educational advantages, but the average college graduate begins at_a
higher wage (probably because more fields are open to her), and in
each period maintains, in general, some advantage over the woman
with 5 years’ more experience but with only high-school education.
Only for the first group—those who had worked less than 5 years—
did the earnings increase steadily with education. In the next four
experience groups, though the distribution of earnings is not signifi­
cantly different, the median for the women with normal training was
lower than for high school. In the group with experience of 25 and
under 30 years normal again was low and high school had no advantage
in earnings over grade, and in the most experienced group the median
earnings of both normal and college incomplete were below those with
less advanced education. Of course, a preponderant number of the
normal-school trained were engaged in teaching, so a comparison of the
earnings of women who went to normal school with other educational
groups is in effect comparing teaching with other occupations. Aside
from these normal-trained women, the tendency for earnings to in­
crease with training is clear, the greatest difference being between
women who had completed college and those who were not graduated.
The maximum earnings for the women in these groups showed great
variation. For the women who had worked less than 5 years the
maximum was $10,000, for a college graduate. Earnings twice as
high as this, $20,000, were reported by a woman who had worked 5
and less than 10 years and whose education did not extend beyond
high school. Among the women who had worked 10 and less than 15
years the maximum was $14,000, for a woman who had completed
college. For the experience group 15 and less than 20 years, the
largest amount, $12,000, was earned by a woman with normal-school
training. The highest earnings for the group who had worked 25 and
less than 30 years were $15,000, reported by a woman who had
attended but not completed college, and the highest of all were the
$25,000 earned by two women—one who had not gone beyond normal
school and had worked 20 and less than 25 years, and another a
college graduate who had worked for 30 years or more.




42

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

Earnings and special training

As stated in an earlier section of this report, 15.2 percent of the
more than 19,000 women who reported on special training, technical
or professional in character, had had no such training. A smaller
proportion, 13.6 percent, of the 15,134 who reported on both earnings
and special training, had had no special training.
Much the highest proportion with no special training were in the
group with the lowest earnings, 24 percent of those who earned less
man $1,000. At the other extreme were the women earning $1 500
and less than *2,000, all but 10 percent of whom had had special
framing, ihe intermediate groups had 12 or 14 percent classed as
without such training.
The proportions earning specified amounts among those with and
without special training may be seen from the summary following.
Table 14.— Year’s earnings, by special training
[Medians and percents not computed where base is less than 50]

Total

Total reporting
earnings

%
Special training
Number Number Median
earnings

Total. _____ _____

Not re­
Percent of women reporting earnings porting
earnings

Lass
than
$1,000

$1,000
and
less
than
$2,000

$2,000
and
less
than
$3,000

$3,000
and
more

Number

20,168

15,718

SI, 625

12.3

60.5

19.8

7.3

19,108
2, 904

15,134
2,057

1,630
1,465

12.0
21.1

60.7
53.8

20.0
17.6

lST

7.4

3,974
847

16,204

13,077

1,650

10.5

61.8

20.4

7.3

3,127

Business......... .......
Teaching..................
Nursing__________
Library work, music, art
Social and welfare work.
Medicine______
Dentistry, pharmacy
Law_________
Other_____________

8,166
4,693
811
678
217
117
47
106
1,369

6,847
4,022
536
490
184
64
28
76
830

1,600
1,600
1.830
1,810
2,080
4,355

11.6
10.6
2.6
11.2
2.2

64.5
63.6
64.0
50.6
41.8
7.8

17.7
20.2
27.1
28.2
47.3
10.9

6.1
5.5
6.3
10.0
8.7
81.2

2, 180
1,880

5.3
9.0

38. 2
47.1

23.7
28.2

32.9
15.7

1,319
671
275
188
33
53
19
30
539

Not reporting special training.

1,060

584

20.7

55.5

15.4

8.4

476

Total reporting__________
No special training
With special training___

4.450

The greatest contrast in the proportions earning specified amounts
among those with and those without special training was in the lowestearmngs group.. Twice as large a proportion of those without as of
those with special training had earned less than $1,000.
The.large group earning $1,500 and less than $2,000 also appears
very differently m the two classes, being 32.1 percent of the women
with special training but only 22.8 percent of those without. For
the remaining earnings groups the differences were not great.
The median of the earnings of the women with some special training
was $1,650; for those with no special training it was considerably
lower, $1,465. Great differences appeared in the median earnings
of those reporting special training. They ranged from $1,600 for
those who had had business or teacher’s training—more than four




43

YEAR’S EARNINGS

fifths of all reporting—to $4,355 for those trained in medicine, one
of the smallest of the occupational groups. The median earnings
of persons with legal training ranked next, but they were only $2,180,
just half the figure for medical training. Median earnings for those
who had had training in library work, music, or art'were $1,810; in
nursing, $1,830; and in social work, $2,080. These last earnings are
of special interest, since they are the highest for any group of women
with special training who were almost wholly salaried workers.
In every case where earnings, education, and training were reported,
the median was higher for the women with special training than for
those without.
_
....
The range of median earnings for those with no special training was
from $1,425 for the women with high-scliool education to $1,885 for
college graduates. The largest difference in medians for those with
and without special training was $240 for women who had attended
grade school only and the smallest was $10 for the college graduates.
Median earnings for the women reporting the various types of spe­
cial training and general education differed considerably. I or the
women whose special training was in business (more than one half
of all) the median earnings ranged from $1,570 for those with some
high-school training to $1,785 for those holding a degree. Next to
the highest median, $1,700, was for the women who had attended
grammar school only, the group shown to have been comparatively
older and more experienced.
Table 15.—Median earnings, by maximum general education and special training
[Medians not computed where base is less than 50]

Total..
Total reporting--------------No special training —

1 See note to table 3.




M edian earnings

Num ber

M edian earnings

Num ber

M edian earnings

Normal ! College in­ College
complete complete
school1

Num ber

M edian earnings

Num ber

M edian earnings

High
school

aS
5&
Sjj
*s
2 c5
0 a>
11
1!
£2
o3

15, 315 1,175 $1, 610 6,671 $1, 555 2,257 $1, 500 2,602 $1, 645 2,610 $1,895 4,853
14, 779 1,089 1,625 6, 352 1, 565 2, 254 1,500 2,519 1,650 2,565 1,895 4,329
190 1, 625 112 1,885 945
I', 959 344 1,450 1,310 1,425
3

With special training.. 16, 204 12,820
Business............. ...............
Teaching...................... Nursing______________
Library work, music, art.. _
Social and welfare work...
Medicine----------------------Dentistry, pharmacy-----Law........ ..............................
Other_______ _ ________
_
Not reporting special train­
ing-------------------- ------ -1 1,060

Grade
school

Num ber

Special training

T otal reporting (number)

Women reporting maximum general education and earnings

6, 662
4t 007

815

745 1,690 5, 042 1,595 2, 251 1,500 2,329 1,650 2,453 1,895 3, 384

79 1,490

1,570 398 1, 660 1,081 1,585 303
1, 50C 1,751 1,44C 644 1,490 1,513
35
151 1,870
26
1,805
168 1,730 157
38
1,680
81
58 2,000
10
6t
4
12
9
45
14
2
13
200 2,190 247
26
263 1,585

1,785 1,504
1,820 686
295
1.98C 203
39
2,19C
53
4,155
19
31
2,145 554

86

319

45

524

611 1,700 4,269
92
7
266
106
27

3

83

44

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

. For the college-complete and normal-school groups, special training
in teaching was much the most common. The medians for those
with teacher’s training were well below the averages for the total
groups with special training. For college incomplete, high school,
and grade school, the women with a business education far out­
numbered those with any other special training. Their median was
below' the group average in the first two of these, but was slightly
above it in the case of the grade-school groups.
Earnings and stability

When the stability of women workers is inquired into, two details
suggest themselves: The number of jobs held and the time on present
or last job. The group of women included in the present study
was a mature one, the median age being 39.5 years and the median
years of work experience 13.5.
Table 16.

Median earnings, by number of jobs and years of experience
Women reporting number of jobs held and present earnings

1 job

Years of experience

o.S

CD'a
S
_3
<£ fl
TotalT................. ......

acn d
w*

3 jobs

4 jobs

o«o

a Vi

0d
.2 wj

'Sg
2*

5 or more
jobs

.Si fcuo
d

'S’d

11

ii

14, 958 3, 745 $1,450 3,374 $1,605 2, 643 $1,655 1,934 $1, 700

Total reporting..................
Less than 5
5 and less than 10
10 and less than 15
15 and less than 20
20 and less than 25
25 and less than 30........ .
30 and more
Not reporting years of
experience___________ _

2 jobs

14,718 3,737....
2,527
3,616
3,852
2,612
2,090
1,476
1,514
2,481

2,176 1,124 $1,130
3,173 926 1,370
3, 230 713 1,650
2,127 319 1,775
1,657 250 1,895
1,171 203 2,025
1,184 202 2,060
240

8

3,324
545
762
680
455
348
244
290

2,585
1,205
1,415
1,625
1,750
1,910
1,930
2,085

290
599
573
361
310
217
235

129 1, 230
■12b 1,495
478 1,645
332 1,805
229 1,950
168 1,900
128 2,045

o ov.

$1, 735 5,210

1,893
1,195
1,425
1,665
1, 820
1,870
2,050
1,975

■o a
Sa
a|

2,969
88
457
786
660
520
339
329

1,170
1, 490
1,685
1, 775
1,825
1,930
1,990

351
443
622
485
433
305
330
2,241

The influence of stability and experience on earnings is clear from
the figures, there being only two examples of a median that fails to
increase with experience. As a whole, however, experience seems to
have less weight as it becomes divorced from length of service, as
inversely measured by a frequent change in job. For the women with
only one job the medians ranged from $1,130 to $2,060, a difference
of $930 (82 percent) between those with the least and those with the
greatest experience. For the women who had held five or more jobs
the difference was only $820, from $1,170 to $1,990 (70.1 percent).
Some of this apparent increase is due to the low (base) wage of those
women who have had five or more jobs in less than 5 years’ experience.
It is not self-evident that stability in itself is a virtue, for women with
only one job do not in any case earn the highest amounts (medians),
but the group of women with the highest median earnings is the one
that had changed jobs only once during a period of at least 30 years
since beginning work. Those who had held only one job during a
similar period ranked second.




45

YEAR’S EARNINGS

As the time on the job increased the median earnings increased,
from $1,285 for less than a year’s service to $2,020 for as much as 20
years on the job, a total increase of 57 percent.
Women reporting time and earnings
in present or last job
Time in present or last job
Number

Percent

Median
earnings

15,485

100.0

$1,630

1,347
1,611
1,318
1,228
1,121
4,074
2, 604
932
1, 250

Total -.....................................................................................................

8.7
10.4
8.5
7.9
7.2
26.3
16.8
6.0
8.1

1,285
1,390
1, 435
1,520
1, 535
1,655
1,800
1,890
2,020

Earnings, industry, and occupation

For nearly all the women who reported earnings, industry and occu­
pation were available also. Naturally, great differences appeared in
the proportions of the various occupational groups earning specific
amounts.
With the exception of agriculture and mining, each industry group
had attracted considerable numbers of women. The largest propor­
tion earning less than $1,000 was the 24 percent of women in trans­
portation and communication, closely followed by the 21.1 percent
in trade. Just over one half of the group first mentioned were tele­
graph or telephone operators, and practically one fourth of the other
group were saleswomen. The smallest proportion of any industry
group earning less than $1,000 was that of the women in public service
not elsewhere classified (5.6 percent). _
.
When specific occupations were examined, every group but physi­
cians and osteopaths was found represented in this low earnings class.
The smallest proportion was that of trained nurses, 2.4 percent, fol­
lowed by the 2.8 percent of public stenographers and office managers.
The largest proportion earning less than $1,000 was the 59.6 percent
of the saleswomen.
The proportions in the various industry groups who had earned
less than $1,500 ranged from about one third each in the public-service
and manufacturing groups to one half in transportation and com­
munication. The proportions of the various occupational groups
earning less than $1,500 ranged from not quite one twentieth of the
physicians to almost nine tenths of the saleswomen. Four fifths of
the dentists’ and doctors’ assistants and almost three fourths of the
telephone and telegraph operators earned less than $1,500.
The most usual earnings in the public-service group and in profes­
sional service were $1,500 to $2,000. In all other industry groups
$1,000 to $1,500 were the most usual earnings.




Table 17.— Year’s earnings, by industry and occupation
05

[Medians and percents not computed where base is less than 50]

Women reporting earnings

Industry and occupation

Total, ................... .
Total reporting....... .............
Agriculture and extraction of minerals...
Owners, managers, officials____
Milliners and dressmakers
All others______
Transportation and communication
Owners, managers, officials_____
Telegraph and telephone operators..
All others__________
Owners, managers, officials, buyers
Saleswomen...
All others____
Public service (not elsewhere classified)
Professional service_______
Teachers_______
Trained nurses________
Social and welfare workers..........
Librarians___________
Editorial and research workers
Technicians, laboratory assistants,
chemists, dietitians_ _____
_
Dentists’ and doctors’ assistants
Physicians_________
Osteopaths .................
Lawyers_______________
All others_____




Total
num­
ber

i

Less than
$1,000

$1,000 and less
than $1,500

$1,500 and less
than $2,000

$2,000 and less
than $3,000

$3,000 and
more

Not re­
porting
earn­
ings
1 Per­
(num­
Per­
ber)
Num­ cent of Num­ cent of
total
total
ber
ber
report­
report­
ing
ing

Total
num­
ber
report­
ing

First
Third
quar- M^diar quartile
tile

20,168

15, 718

$1,210

$1,625

$2,075

1,933

12.3

4,705

29.9

4,807

30.6

3,120

19.8

1,153

7.3

4,450

19,067

15,563

1,210

1,625

2,070

1,911

12.3

4,667

30.0

4,764

30.6

3,086

19.8

1,135

7.3

3, 504

33
523
406
66
51
264
114
136
14
2,444
1,631
505
308
539
6, 909
4,192
766
376
263
239

13
314
230
40
44
225
101
113
11
1,556
968
364
224
482
5,668
3,681
509
328
245
198

151
133
115
106
75
493

98
110
65
43
49
342

1, 300
1,560

1,920
2,230

2,955
3, 345

1,020
1,455
810

1,480
2,010
1,155

2,165
2,495
1,525

1,080
1,325
690
1,460
1,355
1,290
1,240
1,575
1,630
1,395
1,085

1,615
1,820
915
1,950
1,725
1,715
1,630
1,825
2,020
1,830
1,590

2,330
2,540
1,275
2, 800
2,145
2,200
2,060
2,180
2,400
2,350
2,290

1,410
890
3,235

1,815
1,195
4,185

1,405
........ 1

1,905

Per­
Num­ cent of
total
ber
report­
ing

39
15
18
6
54
8
44
2
329
91
217
21
27
496
336
12
15
22
41

12.4
6.5

21. i
9.4
59.6
9.4
5.6
8.8
9.1
2.4
4.6
9.0
20.7

2, 260
1, 450
5,845

4
34

4.1
30.9

2,475

3
29

8.5

24.0
7.9
38.9

Per­
Per­
Num­ cent of Num­ cent of
total
total
ber
ber
report­
report­
ing
ing

2
66
37
12
17
61
19
40
2
372
232
102
38
132
1,580
1 208
77
39
50
51

21.0
16.1
27.1
18.8
35.4
23.9
24.0
28.0
17.0
27.4
27.9
32.8
15.1
11.9
20.4
25.8

4
62
46
7
9
41
23
16
2
336
251
26
59
182
1,778
1,148
255
106
76
38

25
54
3

25.5
49.1
4.6

3
70

32
16
2
5

20.5

II
89 1i

19. 7
20.0
18.2
22.8
14.2
21.6
25.9
7.1
26.3
37.8
31.4
31.2
50.1
32.3
31.0
19.2
32.7
14.5
3.1
26.0

3
71
62
1
8
56
40
12
4
287
219
12
56
91
1,346
793
136
142
76
45
30
4
7
8
11
94

22.6
27.0
24.9
39.6
10.6
18.4
22.6
3.3
25.0
18.9
23.7
21.5
26.7
43.3
31.0
22.7
30.6
3.6
10.8
27.6

4
76
70
2
4
13
11
1
1
232
175
7
50
50
468
196
29
26
21
23
7
2
53
30
21
60

24.2
30.4
5.8
10.9
.9
14.9
18.1
1.9
22.3
10.4
8.3
5.3
5.7
7.9
8.6
11.6
7.1
1.8
81.5
17.5

20
209
176
26
7
39
13
23
3
888
663
141
84
57
1,241
511
257
48
18
41
53
23
50
63
26
151

>
©
B
B
O
i-3

O
»
3
to
d
m
3
B
oe
m
>
x
o
►3
H
B
B
W
o
B

B

on
EB
o
on

Domestic and personal service----- ------ ----Owners and managers.---------------------All others.------- -------------------------------Clerical service--------------------------------------Public stenographers and office mana­
gers---- --------------------------- -----------—
Secretaries---------------------------------------Bookkeepers, accountants, cashiers-----Stenographers and typists.......................Clerks and not classified------ ------------Not reporting industry or occupation---------

279
175
104
7,026

1,220
1,480
975
1,175

1,760
1,950
1,355
1,545

2,455
3,010
2,030
1,925

41
14
27
925

14.7
8.0
26.0
13.2

66
31
35
2,388

23.7
17.7
33.7
34.0

62
47
15
2,299

22.2
26.9
14.4
32.7

57
39
18
1,175

20.4
22.3
17.3
16.7

53
44
9
239

19.0
25.1
8.7
3.4

316
228
88
734

464
2,910
2,117
1,108
1,161

398
2, 659
1,918
1,011
1,040
155

1,610
1,235
1,130
1,060
1,180

1,960
1,620
1,455
1,340
1,560

2,505
1,955
1,870
1,690
1,960

11
288
293
197
136
22

2.8
10.8
15.3
19.5
13. 1

57
805
730
452
344
38

14.3
30.3
38.1
44.7
33.1

142
985
561
285
326
43

35.7
37.0
29.2
28.2
31.3

129
482
276
68
220
34

32.4
18.1
14.4
6.7
21.2

59
99
58
9
14
18

14.8
3.7
3.0
.9
1.3

66
251
199
97
121
946

1,101

Y E A R ’S E A R N IN G S




595
403
192
7,760

«<I

48

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS
Chart 5. EARNINGS DISTRIBUTION IN EACH INDUSTRY GROUP

Per5 cent0
2
1

MANUFACTURING
Less than 11,000
11,000, less than $1,500
$1,500, less than $2,000
$2,000, less than $5,000
$3,000 and over
TRANSPORTATION AND COMMUNICATION
Less than $1,000
$1,000, less than $1,500
$1,500, less than $2,000
$2,000, less than $5,000
$3,000 and over
TRADE
Less than $1,000
$1,000, less than $1,500
$1,500, less than $2,000
$2,000, less than $3,000
$3,000 and over
PUBLIC SERVICE

N.E.C.l

Less than $1,000
$1,000, less than $1,500
$1,500, less than $2,000
$2,000, less than $3,000
$3,000 and over
PROFESSIONAL SERVICE
Less than $1,000
$1,000, less than $1,500
$1,500, less than $2,000
$2,000, less than $3,000
$3,000 and over
DOMESTIC AND PERSONAL SERVICE
Less than $1,000
$1,000, less than $1,500
$1,500, less than $2,000
$2,000, less than $3,000
$3,000 and over
CLERICAL SERVICE
Less than $1,000
$1,000, less than $1,500
$1,500, less than $2,000
$2,000, less than $3,000
$5,000 and over
i Not elsewhere classified




55
~~i

49

YEAR’S EARNINGS

For saleswomen $500 and under $1,000 were the most common
earnings, while among telephone and telegraph operators equal pro­
portions earned $500 and under $1,000 and $1,000 and under $1,500.
The earnings class last mentioned was the most frequent among
teachers, editorial and research workers, assistants to dentists and
doctors, workers in domestic and personal service, the bookkeeper
and accountant group, stenographers and typists, and general clerks
and other office workers. Earnings of $1,500 and under $2,000 were
most usual for owners, managers, and officials in manufacturing, in
trade, and in domestic and personal service. Trained nurses, libraChart 6. FIRST QUART1LE, SECOND QUARTILE (MEDIAN), AND THIRD

QUARTILE EARNINGS, BY INDUSTRY GROUP

1 - First quartile
2 - Median
5 - Third quartile

Manufacturing Transportation Trade
and
and
mechanical
communication

Public

service

and personal

Clerical
service

^ Mot elsewhere classified

rians, technicians and laboratory assistants, public stenographers and
office managers, and secretaries also were most commonly in this
class. Social and welfare workers were earning $1,500 to $2,000 or
$2,000 to $2,500 with practically equal frequency.
Only physicians, and owners, managers, and officials in transporta­
tion and communication, showed any tendency to a concentration of
earnings in higher groups, $2,000 and under $2,500 being the more
representative earnings for the latter and $3,000 and under $3,500
perhaps being representative for the former, though the small number
of cases cannot be considered conclusive evidence.
About 80 percent of the women in clerical service and 70 percent in
transportation and communication, public service, and professional




50

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

service earned less than $2,000. The smallest proportion was about
53 percent of those engaged in manufacturing. As for the occupa­
tions, over 90 percent of the saleswomen, dentists’ and doctors’ assist­
ants, and stenographers and typists, as compared to less than 10
percent of the physicians, were in this earnings group. Osteopaths
and lawyers were the only groups besides physicians with as many as
60 percent of their members earning $2,000 and more.
The proportions of the various industry groups earning as much as
$3,000 ranged from the 3.4 percent of clerical service to the 24.2 per­
cent of manufacturing. Practically three fourths of all women in
manufacturing were owners, managers, or officials. Among the
occupational groups, the smallest proportions earning $3,000 or more
were those ol telephone and telegraph operators and stenographers
and typists, 0.9 percent in each case. The largest proportion, 81.5
percent, was that of physicians.
The median earnings for the total of 15,563 women were $1,625.
Of the 7 industry groups shown, the 225 women in transportation
and communication had the lowest median, $1,480, and the 314
women in manufacturing had the highest, $1,920. As mentioned
before, more than half the women in transportation and communica­
tion were telephone or telegraph operators, and almost three fourths
of the women in manufacturing wrere owners, managers, or officials,
in trade and in domestic and personal service large proportions, more
than three fifths in each case, wrere owners or managers.

Industry

All industries.

Transportation and communication
Clerical service_____
Trade___________________
Professional service_____ _____
Public service (n.e.c.).......................
Domestic and personal service_____
Manufacturing.................. ..................1 2

Number of
women
reporting
earnings

Median
earnings 1

2 15,563

2 $1,625

5, 668

1,480
1, 545
1,615
1,715
1,725
1,760
1,920

1 See table 17 for first and third quartiles.
2 Includes agriculture and extraction of minerals, with 13 women, not shown separately.

Among the various industry groups, the lowest earnings as indicated
by the first quartile (see definition in footnote 6, p. 4) were $1,020
for the women in transportation and communication; the highest first
quartile was $1,355, for the women in the public-service group. The
highest earnings as indicated by the third quartile were $2 955 for
manufacturing. On the other hand, the third quartile for clerical
service was only $1,925. The variation from first to third quartile
was least for clerical workers, $750, and greatest for women in manu­
facturing, $1,655.




\

51

TEAR’S EARNINGS

Occupation

Number
of women
reporting
earnings

Median
earnings 1

3 15,563

$1,625

364
113
110
1,011
1,918
1,040
198
2,659
3,681
98
968
509
245
175
398
101
328
230
65

915
1,155
1,195
1,340
1,455
1,560
1,590
1,620
1,630
1,815
1,820
i;825
1,830
1,950
1,960
2,010
2,020
2,230
4,185

i See table 17 for first and third quartiles.
3 Includes several groups with fewer than 50 women, not shown separately.

When occupation as distinct from industry was considered, median
earnings were found to vary from $915 for the 364 saleswomen report­
ing to $4,185 for the 65 physicians.
The variation in earnings, or the difference between lower and
upper quartiles, not shown in the list, was least ($560) for dentists’
and doctors’ assistants and greatest ($2,620) for physicians. For
the largest industry group, clerical service, the variation was $750
(lower quartile $1,175 and upper quartile $1,925), and for the largest
occupational group, teaching, it was $820 ($1,240 the lower and
$2,060 the upper quartile).
Social and welfare workers as a group—usually considered not
highly paid—had the highest median earnings of any groups of
chiefly salaried workers. Only two groups—the physicians and the
owners, managers, and officials in manufacturing—had higher median
earnings. Considering this, it was thought worth while to inquire
further into the make-up of the social workers’ group.
In the first place, the social workers are more generally in the
larger cities of at least 10,000 population, 89.1 percent of them, in
contrast to only 70.3 percent of the librarians, for example, and only
61.5 percent of the whole professional group, being in cities of this
size. In cities with 25,000 or more inhabitants were 62.5 percent of
the social workers, 42.2 percent of the librarians, and 35.8 percent of
the total professional group.
Forty-nine (13 percent) of the 376 social and welfare workers were
classed as superintendents, supervisors, directors, etc., and 97 (25.8
percent) as executive secretaries of such organizations as charities,
the Red Cross, and tuberculosis associations, including the general
secretaries of Young Women’s Christian Associations. Practically
as large a group, 96 women, comprised secretaries in Young Women’s
Christian Associations other than general secretaries and similar
positions in other welfare organizations. A little less than one fourth
of the total (23.1 percent) was made up of probation officers, travelers'
aids, hospital or church social workers, tuberculosis and public-health
workers, and so on. A miscellaneous group made up the remainder.




/
52

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

Earnings ^ were reported for 328 of the 376 social and welfare
workers. The median for the women in the largest group, that com­
posed of the general secretaries of the Young Women’s Christian
Associations and executive secretaries of other organizations, was
the highest, $2,175. The median next in rank was $1,870 for the
Young Women's Christian Association secretaries other than general
secretaries, and the same type of position in other organizations.
The lowest median, $1,825, was for the group of probation officers,
travelers’ aids, etc. The remaining classes were small, but probably
representative of their restricted groups—the median earnings for
superintendents, supervisors, directors, etc., being $2,315 and those
for all other social and welfare workers being $1,955.
In considering earnings and occupation in connection with educa­
tion, some interesting facts were disclosed. In clerical work, where
the largest proportion of women were employed, the median earnings
for the group as a whole ranged from $1,510 for those who had at­
tended no school beyond high school to $1,710 for the college graduates.
The maximum earnings of $7,500 in clerical work were reported by
1 who had completed college and by 3 who had gone no further
than high school, the latter illustrating the fact that though a some­
what meager education may restrict the field of endeavor it does not
limit earnings within the restricted field. Education principally
opens the door. Any disadvantages may be greatly compensated by
inherent ability and special training.
Table

18.—Median earnings, by occupation and general education—groups with
8 or more medians obtainable
[Medians not computed where base is less than 50]
Median earnings where general education
was—
Industry and occupation

Numher of
women

Grade
school

High
school

Normal
school

College
incom­
plete

College
com­
plete

Total-,....................... .......................

i 15,167

$1,610

$1,555

$1, 500

$1,645

$1,895

Trade______________________________
Owners, managers, officials, buyers.

1,485
929

1,450
1, 770

1,565
1,830

1, 620
1, 735

1,735
1,790

2,000

1,715

1,830

1,650

1,685
1,495
1,855
1,645
1,370

1,445
1,415

1,700
1,520
1,955
1,640
1,540

2,115
2,030

1, 510
1,975
1,600
1, 425
1,320
1,530

1, 575

1,550

1,710

Public service (not elsewhere classified)

466

Professional service______________
Teachers.................................. ......
Social and welfare workers___
Librarians---------------------------Editorial and research workers.

5,591
3,665
311
239
190

1,470

Clerical service
Public stenographers and office managers_
_
Secretaries
Bookkeepers, accountants, cashiers
Stenographers and typists............. ...............
Clerks and not classified

6,822
391
2,581
1,863
990
997

1,665
1,935
1,770
1,620
1,420
1,605

1,960

1,915
1,840
2, 210

2,000

1, 615
1,460
1,375
1,710

1,590
1,495
1,370
1,550

1,730
1,600

1 Total includes 803 women in groups not shown separately because fewer than 3 medians obtainable.

The variation in median earnings for the comparatively small
group, 391 women, who were office managers or public stenographers
was small. The lowest median was $1,935 tor the women who had
attended grade school only, and the highest was $2,000 for those who
had attended but had not completed college. Only 21 of the 3,000-




YEAR’S EARNINGS

53

odd college graduates had been attracted to these occupations and
$4,000 was their maximum for the group. The maximum earnings
for this class as a whole were $7,500, for a woman with high-school
education.
.
Among the 2,581 women classed as secretaries, any disadvantages
due to a lack of higher education probably had been compensated by
experience. The highest median, for the 171 who had attended no
school above the grades, was only $1,770. The maximum earnings,
$7,500, were those of a woman who had not gone beyond high school
and of a college graduate.
In the large group (1,863 women) of bookkeepers, accountants, and
cashiers, education was again overshadowed by other factors. The
range of medians was from $1,425 for the women with high-school
education to $1,620 for those who had attended grade school only.
The maximum was for a woman who had attended high school, $7,500.
The lowest median among the 990 stenographers and typists,
$1,320, was for those who had attended high school, and the highest,
$1,420, was for those whose education consisted only of grade school.
Only 28 college graduates were engaged in this occupation. A young
woman who had attended high school had the highest earnings, $5,400.
In the group of 997 clerks and others not elsewhere classified, the
lowest median, $1,530, was for those with high-school education, and
the highest, $1,710, was for those who had attended normal school.
The highest earnings were for a woman who had attended only grade
school, $5,600.
_
Among the 5,591 professional workers the lowest median for the
whole group was $1,445, for those who had attended normal school,
and the highest was $1,915, for those who held a bachelor’s or higher
degree. The maximum earnings for this group were $25,000, reported
by a physician.
_
Among teachers also the lowest median, $1,415, was for those with
normal-school training (very few teachers had attended only grade
school), and the highest, $1,840, was for those with a college degree.
The highest earnings in the teaching profession were $15,000 for a
woman who had attended college but had not received a degree.
She was the owner of a private school.
Among the social and welfare workers, those who had attended
high school had the lowest median earnings, $1,855; those who had
attended college but had not received a degree had the next higher
median, $1,955; and those with degrees had the highest median,
$2,210. The maximum earnings among these workers were $5,800,
for a college graduate. It is interesting that among all the profes­
sional workers who reported high-school education as their maximum,
social and welfare workers, 82 in number, had the highest median
earnings. Furthermore, of the five professional groups with sufficient
numbers of representatives in the class “college complete”, social
workers had next to the highest median earnings, $2,210, being
outranked only by physicians, with a median of $4,320.
In only one other group, trade, were there sufficient numbers in
the five educational groups to make any comparison of median
earnings. For this group as a whole the median earnings increased
as the amount of education increased, from $1,450 for those with
grade-school education only, to $1,960 for the college graduates.




54

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

The highest earnings were $25,000, for a woman who had attended
normal school.
. The variation in median earnings for the women who were owners
in trade was considerably less. Those with normal-school training
had the lowest median, $1,735, and those with college degrees had
the highest, $2,000. The maximum of $25,000, already quoted, was
lor one of these owners.
A number of cases of high earnings, related to the women’s educa­
tion, are cited here. About 1 percent of the women reporting earnings
and occupation who had had no formal education other than grade
school had earnings of $6,000 or more. The highest amount reported
was $15,000, by an owner in trade as the net income from her business.
Among the highest incomes of women in this group was that of an
owner in manufacturing, who reported the amount as $12,000
Another high income, $7,200, was that of the manager of a hotel.
Among the women who had attended high school, less than 1 per­
cent had earned $6,000 or more. The maximum reported by the
women of this group was $20,000, by an owner under manufacturing.
Another case of high earnings was the $13,000 reported by a profes­
sional woman and a considerable number in this group reported
earning as much as $10,000 or $7,500.
Only 10 of those who had attended normal school earned as much
as $6,000. The largest amount reported by any of the group was
$25,000, for a woman in the insurance business. Another woman
made $12,000 a year selling life insurance, and $10,000 was reported
by a woman in home-economics work. In teaching, for which
normal training is the accepted preparation, the highest earnings
reported were $4,800.
As regards college nongraduates, the maximum earnings were for
a woman who owned a private school. Her net business earnings
were $15,000. A woman lawyer practicing in her own office made
$11,000, and the owner and manager of a restaurant made $10,000.
The highest earnings reported by anyone with college training
were $25,000, for a physician. The earnings of a doctor of osteopathy
were reported as $14,000.
In the important correlation showing the great influence of exper­
ience, only four industry groups—trade, public service not elsewhere
classified, the professions, and clerical service—had enough women
for adequate comparison. For owners in trade, teachers, and prac­
tically all clerical occupations the numbers were well sustained in
the higher experience groups. This cannot be said of such occupa­
tions as saleswomen, stenographers and typists, and doctors’ and
dentists’ assistants.
Increase in financial return with years of experience differed greatly
with occupation. For women in trade the median earnings varied
from $1,100 for those with experience of less than 5 years to $2,165
for those with 30 years or more of experience, an increase of 97
percent. For the bookkeeping group of clerical workers the increase
was 95 percent, from $990 to $1,930. Earnings of secretaries, on the
other hand, showed a variation of only 82 percent, but this was con­
siderably better than the 59 or 60 percent for teachers, professional
service as a whole, and owners in trade. These three groups had
much higher initial earnings than the other groups, so the final situa­
tion was not so unfavorable as might be surmised.




55

YEAR’S EARNINGS

Trained nurses with less than 5 years’ experience had median
earnings of $1,650. Teachers and secretaries did not average this
amount until after 10 years’ experience, and the bookkeeper and
stenographer groups did not approximate this median until after
15 years’ experience. Teachers had about $145 advantage over
secretaries in the beginning but their earnings were very close after
5 years’ experience, some advantage accruing to secretaries after
20 years of experience.
Interesting also are the slightly higher medians of the stenographers
and typists as compared with the bookkeeper group of less than 10
years’ experience, but after 10 years the bookkeeper group has a slight
advantage.
Table

19.—Median earnings, by industry and occupation and years of experience—
groups with 3 or more medians obtainable
[Medians not computed where base is less than 50]

Industry and occupation

Total
Trade------- ---------------- -------Owners, managers, officials, buyers---------------

Median earnings where years of experience were
Number
of
women Under 5 5 and 10 and 15 and 20 and 25 and 30 and
under J 0 under 15 under 20 under 25 under 30 over
i 14,895

$1,165

$1,420

$1,655

$1,780

$1, 880

$1,960

$2,015

1,467

1,100

1,330

1,580

1,800

1,760

2,060

2,165

921
342

1,385
805

1,555
830

1,740
1,085

1,915

1,880

2,195

2, 215

453
5, 394
3,600

1,425
lj 295
1,250

1,610
1,515
1,435

1,980
1,885

2,055
1,950

2,035
1,985

6,809

1,985
1,835
1,790
1,960
1, 725

Public service (not elsewhere
Professional service-----------Teachers
Clerical service------------------Public stenographers and
Secretaries
Bookkeepers, accountants, cashiers.. .. . _
Stenographers and
Clerks and not classified.

1,050

1,365

1, 690
li 755
1, 675
1, 875
1,600

1,830

1,890

1,945

385
2, 584

1,105

1,635
1,430

1,885
1,675

2, 110
1,790

2,125
1,900

1, 750
1,930

2,010

1,857

990

1,290

1,475

1,650

1,740

1,850

1,930

976
1,007

1,005
L 075

1,310
i, 375

1, 465
1,600

1,570
1,625

1,670
1,770

1,830

1,880

i Total includes 2,831 women not shown separately because fewer than 3 medians obtainable.

Earnings and section of the country

The earnings of the women were found to differ greatly in the various
sections of the country.
The largest proportion of women earning less than $1,000 in any of
the five geographical divisions of the United States was the 16.3
percent in the West North Central States, followed closely by the
15.3 percent in the South. The smallest proportion was 7.4 percent,
in the West.
Four fifths of the women in the West North Central States earned
less than $2,000, whereas only about two thirds of those in the North­
east and East North Central States earned as little as this. Almost
three fourths of the women in the South and West earned less than
$2,000.

Only 4 percent in the West North Central section, as compared with
11.1 percent in the Northeast, had earned $3,000 or more.
The median earnings in the various sections of the country ranged
from $1,455 for the West North Central States to $1,720 for the
Northeast, a difference of 18.2 percent.




56

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

Clerical workers and teachers in various sections

F or clerical workers and teachers there were sufficiently large num­
bers to compare earnings for the age groups in each section of the
country.
The median earnings of the 7,000 clerical workers were $1,545 an
average of almost $130 a month. The lowest median was $1,395,’ for
the 1,500 women m the West North Central States; the next two were
$1,570 for the 1,700 women in the South and $1,580 for the 1,650 in
the East North Central section, followed closely by $1 605 for the
1,000 women in the West and $1,610 for the 1,100 in the Northeast.
■ 1 i jui6 age
^le clerical membership does not explain the sec­
tional differences is evident from the following. Women clerical
workers between 20 and 30 years of age earned the most in the West
and earned the least in the West North Central States. In fact,
clerical workers of each age group seemed to fare worse, as measured
financially, in the West North Central States than in any other section
of the country. Apparently they fared best in the West, where the
medians indicated earnings from $125 to $245 ($10 to $20 a month)
higher than those in the West North Central States. The one excep­
tion was the clerical workers between 50 and 60 years of age, who had
somewhat higher medians in the States of the South and the Northeast
but only $15 and $20 higher than in the West.
The median earnings for the 3,700 teachers were $1,630. The
lowest median, $1,425, was for the 570 teachers in the South, rather
closely followed by $1,455 for the 980 in the West North Central
States. I he medians next higher were $1,710 for the 650 women in
the West and $1,720 for the 580 in the Northeast. The highest was
in the East North Central section, where 890 women had a median
of $1,795.
Teachers in the South were lower paid, as a whole and age for age
than in any other section of the country, the only exception being
Jaw110 at11 ^ iUK' llll<ler 60 years, which was well above that for
tho, West North Central States. The East North Central, Northeast,
and West paid their teachers considerably more on the whole than
eithei the South or the West North Central. For the youngest
teachers the highest earnings were in the West, but in the other age
groups earnings were higher in the Northeast or the East North
Central section.
Earnings and size of city

That size of city has much to do wdth earnings is clear when the
two are correlated. I or the 15,000 and more women who could be
classified by earnings and by occupation the median earnings in the
largest cities, those of 100,000 and more population, exceeded the
1®malIest P^ces, those of less than 5,000 population, by
$780. I his difference, representing $65 a month for the group as a
whole, is not so great as the difference within certain classes. For
example, the medians for all women in manufacturing in the largest
and the smallest places differed by $1,730; in all trade by $1,170- and
“if11'6-° - ,imP°rtant groups, including teachers, by more than
$J00. I rained nurses, on the other hand, averaged only $260 more
in the largest cities than in places of less than 5,000 population. It is
interesting to find that in the smallest places the median earnings of
nurses exceeded those of teachers by $420, but that in the largest
cities they fell below by $270.




57

YEAB’S EAENINGS

As was true for the group as a whole, the median for practically
every industry increased with size of city, The difference was
greatest in manufacturing, the $3,095 for women in the largest cities
being considerably more than twice the $1,365 for women m the small­
est places. The difference in medians between largest and smallest
cities was not quite so great for the women in trade, though the
median practically doubled—$2,345 as compared to $1,175. _
In professional work the variation was less, the median m the
largest cities being two thirds more than that in the smallest cities,
$2,285 as against $1,365. For women in clerical pursuits the varia­
tion was still less—the median being $1,915 in the largest and $1,265
in the smallest cities—and it was least of all in domestic and personal
CHART 7

FIRST QUARTILE, SECOND QUARTILE (MEDIAN), AND THIRD
QUARTILE EARNINGS, BY SIZE OF COMMUNITY

$£,500

*2,000

'1

1-1 ■

$1,500

*1,000
1 - First quartiie
2 - Median
5 - Third quartiie

$500

0

L Less than
5,000

5,000,
lesB than

10,000

10,000,

25,000,

less than

less than

25,000

100,000

100,000
and

over

Population

service, where the figures were $1,545 and $2,195 in the smallest and
the largest places, respectively.
,
Except for a slight drop in the case of owners and officials in trade
and clerks and the miscellaneous clerical workers in cities of 5,000 and
less than 10,000, the median earnings in each occupation increased
with size of city.
,
n
Median earnings are presented next for women in large and small
places in the various sections of the country. In each section the
earnings increased with size of community. The greatest variation
in median earnings was in the East North Central section, where
women in the cities of 100,000 or more had a median of $2,180 m
contrast to $1,300 in towns of less than 5,000 population, urns
was followed closely by the Northeast section, where the largest cities
had a median of $2,105 compared with $1,270 for the smallest places.




t)8

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

The least variation in earnings in such a comparison ($2,070 com­
pared with $1,495) was in the West.
In comparing the earnings of women for one size of community in
various sections of the country, in every case the lowest median was
for the women in the West North Central section. In each popula­
tion group but cities of 100,000 and over, the highest medians were in
the West The Northeast, which includes the Middle Atlantic States
and might be expected to rank high, had, in general, lower medians
than either the East North Central or the West.
Table 20.—Median earnings of women in specified sections of the country, by size

of city and town
Women living in specified section of the country and reporting
earnings

Total
Population

Northeast

East North West North
The South
Central
Central

The West

Me­
Me­
Me­
Me­
Me­
Num­ dian Num­ dian- Num­ dian Num­ dian Num­ dian Num­ Me­
dian
ber earn­ ber earn­ ber earn­ ber
ber earn­ ber earn­
earn­
ings
ings
ings
ings
ings
ings

Total.
Less than 5,000__________ _
5.000 and less than 10,000_
_
10.000 and less than 25,000..
25.000 and less than 100,000.
100.000 and more
Percent by which highest
median exceeds lowest__

15,718 $1,625 2,439 $1, 720 3,866 $1,715 3,618 $1, 455 3,365 $1,605
2,430 $1,680
3,347 1,320
299 1,270
420 1,300 1,073 1,225
772 1,310
783 1,495
2,473 1,395
193 1,410
696 1,380
555 1,315
597 1,360
432 1,585
3,908 1,585
550 1,565
817 1,605 1,116 1,495
798 1,550
627 1,725
3, 389 1,805
729 1,820 1,200 1,850
468 1,730
709 1, 755
283 1,885
2,601 2,105
668 2,105
733 2,180
406 1,975
2,125
305 2,070
59.5
65.7
67.7
61.2
62.2.
38.5

As previously noted the median earnings increased in general
(though not consistently) with increased educational attainments.
Some slight irregularity was noted for the women in the towns and
cities of 5,000 and less than 25,000 population. In all other places
there was a steady and consistent increase in earnings for groups with
successively more advanced education. It is interesting to note that
in cities of 100,000 and over the average earnings of women who
had attended only grade school surpassed the average earnings of the
college graduates in places of less than 25,000 population.
For each group reporting their general education, the median
earnings increased with size of city. The differences between the
medians in the smallest and in the largest communities varied from
$695 for those who had completed grammar school to $855 for those
who had attended college but had not graduated.
In analyzing the earnings of these women as affected by experience
and size of city, it was found that in practically all cases the median
increased as the other factors increased.
In each experience class the women showed an increase in earnings
with size of city, the only exceptions being the group with less than 5
years’ experience, where the median for women in towns of 5,000 and
under 10,000 population is slightly less than for women in the still
smaller places, and the group with experience of 15 and under 20
years, where the smallest and the next to the smallest places have the
same median.




YEAR’S EARNINGS

59

In cities of less than 5,000, median earnings at 25 and under 30
years of experience, as compared with experience of less than 5 years,
had increased by about 45 percent, whereas in the largest cities such
increase was 58 percent. In other words, the earnings of the women
in the smaller cities not only were lower to begin with but increased
less with experience. In places of less than 5,000, women with 30
years or more of experience had median earnings only $15 greater
than the median for women with less than 5 years’ experience in
cities of 100,000 or more.
Maximum earnings

The maximum earnings of women in the various occupations are
interesting, though they must be recognized as exceptional and, in
the case of some salaried workers, representing compensation for
services not necessarily implied in the general occupational classifica­
tion. The list following shows the maximum earnings in each occu­
pation group, together with further details of the work where such
are reported. These maximum earnings varied from $3,000 for a
saleswoman, a railroad passenger representative, and a college house
matron, to $25,000 for a physician in private practice and an insur­
ance-company official. Exceptionally high earnings are not surpris­
ing in a few of the professions and among the entrepreneurs in busi­
ness. Though social and welfare workers fared well as a group,
$5,800 was the maximum return to an individual worker.
General occupation

Agriculture and extraction of minerals
Manufacturing:
Owners, managers, officials--------Milliners and dressmakers---------All others...... ..................................

Description

Owner, plantation; official, mineral company..

$6,000

Owner, manufacturing establishment----------Supervisor, millinery workroom_______ _____
Supervisor of women, printing and publishing
plant.

20,0C0
3, 500
5,000

Transportation and communication:
Partner, road construction company.
Owners, managers, and officials
‘ Telegraph and telephone operators---------- Chief telephone operator. ------- -------All others.......................................................... Passenger representative (railroad)..
Trade:
Owners, managers, officials, buyers--------- Official, insurance company-----------Saleswomen_____ _____ _____ ------- ------All others------ ------- ----------------------------- Insurance agent
Public service (not elsewhere classified)-------- Administrative head, Government bureau___
Professional service:
Teachers--------------------------------------------- Owner-teacher, private school----------------------Head of nursing home
Trained nurses
Social and welfare workers--------------------- Social-service worker---------- --------- --------------Librarians------------- ------ ---------------------Editorial and research workers--------------- Research worker_______________
Technicians, laboratory assistants, chem­ Bacteriologist....................................
ists, dietitians.
Dentists’ and doctors’ assistants................. Assistant and secretary to doctor.
Physicians------------------------------------------ Private practice_________ ______
Osteopaths----- --------- ------------ ------ ------General counsel, business corporation.
Lawyers--------- --------- -----------------------All others........................................................... Photographer, own studio------------------Domestic and personal service:
Owners and managers------------- ------------- Owner, beauty shop; owner, restaurantHouse matron, college dormitory.............
All others......................................-............ .
Clerical service:
Public stenographers and office managers.
Secretaries____________ _____ -.................. Secretary, manufacturing establishment.
Bookkeepers, accountants, cashiers--------- Bookkeeper................... ................................
Stenographers, typists.--------- --------------- Stenographer-clerk......................................
Clerks and not classified..............................




Highest
earnings
reported

10,000

3,600
3,000
25.000
3.000
12.000

7, 500
15.000
9.000
5,800
4.000
7, 600
6.000

4.000
25.000
14.000
12.000

8,500
10,000

3.000
5,800
7, 500
7, 500
5,400
5,200

60

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

Additional income

Of the 19,063 women who reported on the subject, 22 percent had
some income other than their salaries. The amounts varied from less
than $200 to as much as $7,500 a year, but more than three fifths
reported amounts of less than $600, and only about one sixth had
$1,200 or more.
The proportion having additional income was greater for those
having no dependents than for those with dependents, being 26 per­
cent and 20.6 percent, respectively. Of the 105 women with the
entire responsibility for dependents who had an additional income
ol $1,200 or more, 14 were the sole support of 3 or more depend­
ents. These 105 women comprised about 23 percent of the group
entirely responsible for dependents and who reported amount of
additional income.
Ability to save

Only 1 in 6 (17.1 percent) of the 19,621 women who reported as
to whether their earnings permitted them to save for emergencies,
could save adequately; over seven tenths (72 percent) saved some^6mg, but about 11 percent (10,9) saved nothing at all. Saving
ability increased with earnings. Those who saved adequately had
median earnings of $1,980; and those who saved something had a
median of $1,610, and for those who saved nothing the median was
only $1,230. The largest proportion of any age group that could
save adequately was among the women of 50 and under 60 years
almost one fifth of whom (18.2 percent) saved adequately. The
largest proportion who could not save at all was among the girls
under 20, more than one fourth of whom (27.8 percent) could not
save at all.
As might be expected, the group able to save adequately had the
smallest proportion of women with dependents, and the group unable
to save anything had the largest proportion with dependents. Thirtyseven percent of the women with the entire responsibility for depend­
ents were unable to save anything.
Worry about financial security

Only about one tenth of the women worried a great deal about
financial security in their old age. Almost three fifths worried
somewhat, but practically one third were unconcerned.
Naturally, the proportion of the women who worried a great deal
about financial security in old age was least for those under 20 years
(1.9 percent). It increased with age to 11.6 percent for those 40 and
under 50, but the proportion worrying considerably was slightly
smaller for those of 50 and under 60 and still smaller for those of 60
years and over. In each age group the women not at all anxious had
the highest median earnings and those worrying a great deal had the
lowest.
Anxiety as to losing position

Almost 19,000 women reported as to whether they were anxious
lest they lose their positions. Of these, only 288 (1.5 percent)
worried a great deal; more than one fourth (26.5 percent) were some­
what anxious; but more than seven tenths (71.9 percent) did not
worry at all.




YEAR’S EARNINGS

61

When median earnings were considered in connection with this
attitude on the part of the women, anxiety was seen to decrease as
Barnings increased. For the women who worried a great deal about
losing their jobs the median was the lowest, $1,520; for those who
worried somewhat it was $1,545; and for those who had no anxiety
at all it was $1,665.
Attitude toward old-age pensions

More than two fifths (41.6 percent) of the 18,647 women reporting
their attitude toward old-age pensions replied that State provision
for such pensions would give them a feeling of greater security. The
median earnings for this group were $1,615, as compared with $1,775
for those who reported that old-age pensions would not contribute
to their feeling of security.
,
As the ages of the women advanced, the proportions ieeling that
such legislation would be of benefit to them increased from about one
fifth (21 2 percent) of those under 20 years to one half (50.2 percent)
of those 50 and under 60 years or 60 years and over. In every age
group the women who did not feel that State provision for their old
age would benefit them had a higher earnings level than those
who did.
„
.

CASE STORIES

The following cases have been selected- as examples of women in
low- and high-earning groups, as illustrating the material advances
made by some women with native ability that compensated for lack
of formal education, or as showing the advantages of extended study
and special training.
N0 i _a woman 49 years of age had had work experience of about 29 years.
She had been wholly self-supporting since she was 25. For the past 20 years she
had pursued night extension courses at business schools, banking institutes,
and universities. At the time of the study she was executive secretary foi a
financial concern, with earnings of $10,000 a year.
No. 2.—A woman of 44 years had two children for whose support she was
responsible. Her general education comprised attendance at a normal school
and special training in business. This fitted her for a position as stenographer,
which she held for some time. While so engaged she studied law and at the tune
of the survey was secretary and general counsel for a business company, bhe
had a large interest in the company. Her earnings for the year of study amounted
to $12,000.
No. 3.—A widow 47 years of age with one child dependent on her reported that
she had finished a 2-year high-school course and 3^ years of normal school At the
completion of this she was given a “permanent certificate to teach in the estate
in which she resided, which she did for a number of years. Her last position as
grade-school teacher, in 1922-23, paid $990 a year. In January of 1924 she was
elected to a county office carrying with it a salary of $7,000, her position at the
time of study.
No. 4.—A single woman 50 years of age had completed a high-school course and
a 3-month stenographic course, in addition to which she had taken extension
classes and correspondence courses. She had taught 1 year m a business college.
In 1908 she began as a bookkeeper and clerk in an insurance corporation at $9UU
a year. At the time of study she was a member of the company, with earnings ot,
$6,000 a year. An interesting comment on her questionnaire was, 1 do not
employ married women.”
No. 5.—A single woman of 22 years had had 1 year and a summer term at
college. For more than 4 years she had worked as a retoucher and general assist­
ant in a photography establishment. Her first earnings were $384 and after 3
years she was raised to $480. She then bought the business. Her income from
the shop at the time of study was $3,000.




62

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

No. 6.—A woman of 59 years, whose husband was no longer in business, had
had no very lucrative employment until the last few years. Before marriage
and during most of her married life she had worked as a musician, with maxi­
mum annual earnings of $1,000. Her education, until 1920, had not extended
beyond high school. In that year she gave up her music and studied law,
graduating in 3 years magna cum laude. From that time on she had practised
law in her own office. Her earnings for the last year she reported as $11,000.
_ No. 7.—A single woman of 43 years, a graduate of a normal school but “hat­
ing” teaching, had taken a business-college course. Through her work as
stenographer she learned insurance selling, her vocation in much of the 18 years
of her work history. Her earnings for 1930 were reported as $12,000. In com­
menting on fear of losing her position this woman said, “A good producer is
seldom discharged without cause.”
No. 8.—A married woman of 34 years, with a high-school education and one
term of training for teaching, reported having had two jobs (kind not specified)
in her earliest working years. In 1921 she started in a beauty shop as an oper­
ator, where she remained a year and a half. Her earnings there were $720 a
year. Two months after leaving that job she bought the beauty shop of which
she was the proprietor at time of survey. Her income here was $3,000 for the
first year and $7,500 for the latest.
No. 9.—A single woman of 60 years, a graduate“of high school and a 2-year
normal course, had taught only' one term, at the end of which she had to stay
at home through illness and the care of others. When she returned to gainful
employment she secured a job as buyer and saleswoman in a dry-goods store.
Her annual salary was $624, an average of $12 a -week. On this, she statpd, she
was wholly self-supporting and maintained her own home.
No. 10.—A single woman of 33 years, a high-school and normal-school gradu­
ate, had had approximately 11 years of work experience. Besides several teach­
ing positions, at a minimum of $900 and a maximum of $1,335, she had tried
work as a telephone operator. Her job at the time of survey was that of dentist’s
assistant, with earnings of only $624 a year, or an average of $12 a week. On
this, she reported, she was not self-supporting.
No. 11.—A woman of 43 years, the mother of three children, had taught school
before her marriage. At the time of the survey she had been owner and manager
of a restaurant for 5 years, with a net income of $10,000.




APPENDIX—FORM OF QUESTIONNAIRE
The National Federation of Business
and Professional Women’s Clubs, Inc.

1819 Broadway, New York City.

THE AGE FACTOR IN THE EMPLOYMENT OF BUSINESS AND PRO­
FESSIONAL WOMEN
[a study conducted for the federation by the Carola Woerishoffer Graduate Department of Social
Economy and Social Research, Bryn Mawr College]

The object of this questionnaire is:
,,
1. To discover the psychological and economic factors involved m the success
of women in business and the professions.
2. To learn the extent to which business and professional women have been
affected by unemployment.
3. To determine whether age curtails a woman’s opportunity for progress,
4. T<f obtain, as a result, information upon which to base vocational advice.
I. Please encircle at the end of each sentence the word or. phrase that most
accurately expresses your point of view on the following questions: ■
1. Are you doing work for which your formal training prepared
you? ....
Yes
No
2. Did you go directly from special training into the work for
which it prepared you?-----------------------------------------------Ycs
No
2a. Give each instance
3.
4
5.
5a.
6.
6a.
7.
7a.
8.
9.

10
11
'
12.
13.
14

15

Have you reached vour maximum earnings for thisposition?—
Yes
No
Are you able to put into effect new ideas in regard to your
work?Yes
No
On the whole, do you find your close associates m your work
agreeable?______.---___________________________________
Yea
No
Give the number with whom you work in close association-----Do you supervise other workers?---------------------------------- ------*es
No
Are they younger, the same age, or older than yourself?--------Are there immediate competitors in your job?-------------- -------Yes
JNo
Are they younger, the same age, or older than yourself?. ...—
Do you believe that in your present position your superior officer
considers your work successful?------------------------------- Xes
ti°
Do you consider yourself well fitted for your presentposition?.
Yes
No
Have you had serious illnesses or operations since you first
began work?___________________________________________ Yes . No
Do you work under conditions that affect your health?-------Very seriously
Somewhat
Not at all
Do you worry about losing your position?.
----------------- A great deal
J
J
Sometimes
Not at all
What is the status of your health at present?--------------------- Excellent
Fair
Has success in your career been hindered because of health?To a great
degree
Somewhat
Not at all
Do you worry about financial security in your old age?------ A great deal
J
Sometimes
Not at all
63




64

AGE FACTOR IN BUSINESS AND THE PROFESSIONS

16.

Would state provision for old-age pensions give you a feeling
of greater security? Yes
No
r,
.
. ,,
„
Undecided
Have you refused the offer of a better position? Frequently
Once

,,
17.

^0Y0j»

18.

Do your earnings permit you to save for possible emergencies? Adequately
Somewhat
m
a
t •
Not at all
19. Are your living conditions satisfactory? Yes
No
20. Are you subject to discharge from your present position with a
brief notice? Yes
No
20a. What is the official relationship between you and the person
who has final authority to discharge you?____________
21. Do you approve of a woman’s planning to work after marriage
in case it is necessary to make marriage economically possi(
blc?---------------------------------------------- ---------------------------------Yes
No
22. Do you approve women’s working after marriage if "their earn­
ings are not needed? Yes
No
23. Do you think a woman would be justified in sacrificing marriage
for a career? Yes
No
24. Have you ever been discriminated against because of marriage? Yes
No
24a. In what occupational field or fields has it occurred?
25.

Have you ever been discriminated" against in favor "of" men
competitors?
25a. In what occupational field or fields?_________________

Yes

No

Yes

No

26.

Have you ever been discriminated against because of your age,
when you felt it was a major factor? _ Yes
No
26a. In what occupational field or fields?IIIIIIIII*
26b. State the circumstances_________________________
27.

Do you know of instances in the business in which you are em­
ployed where women have been laid off rather than men
since November 1929?____________________ ______
27a. State the circumstances.__________ ___ _II.

II. In order to make this study of value, certain biographical data are needed,
as follows. Do not sign this questionnaire. No names of individuals will be
recorded or used. Please answer the following questions carefully:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
10.

11.
12.
.
13.
14.

Leave this column
blank

Date of birth (month, day, year)________________________
Place of birth (State of United States or foreign countrv)
Birth place of father__________________
Of mother
2 I__" "
_
"
Father’s chief paid occupation___________________ ~
Mother’s chief paid occupation before marriage______
'
After marriage__________________________________ ~~
Are you single, married, widowed, divorced, or separated? _ _ __
If married, give husband’s occupation______________
~____"
Indicate living arrangements by checking:
Maintain own home independently_________________
Live with parents or relatives, paying your share____
Live with parents or relatives, not paying___________
_
Live with friends, sharing expenses_________________
_____
Live in a boarding or rooming house________________ _
_
Are you wholly self-supporting? Yes_________
No__________________________________
How many dependents do you support "entirely ?'" "Chil’ ~"
dren------------------Adults._______________________ ____________________ ”
How many dependents do you support partly? Chil­
dren------------------Adults___________________________
_____
Have you independent income other than earnings?
Yes............... ............... No.______ ______________




APPENDIX—FORM OF QUESTIONNAIRE

65
Leave this column
blank

15. If so, what is the yearly amount?------------------ ----------------16. What was the highest grade you completed in grammar
school?r-------------------------------------------------------------- 17. What was the highest grade you completed in high school?

---------------------------------------------------------

How many years did you attend a college or university?..
19. Give degrees received, with dates------------------------------------20. Have you had normal school, business, or other professional
training? Yes____ No-------------- ----------------------------What types?
How long?
Degrees or certificates----------------------------------------------------

------------ --­
------------------------------------------------------------

18.




[Continued on p. 661

---------------------

III. OCCUPATIONAL HISTORY

05
05

steadily8employed andTom tTsS“^oTk000"^011^theyear 193°~31 &ndalS°f°rprecedinS^ bothfro“

How many years had you been employed prior to January 1 1921?
How many positions had you held prior to January 1, 1921?_
_ _
' '
If your present position was secured prior to January 1, 1921, give the date" you began
Glve(|^rN°®®uP^1°on^1) hlstory for the 10 years beginning January 1, 1921, and ending December'31,'1930, in the following table:
(i)

(2)

Leave
this
column
blank

Date entering
position
Month

Year

(3)

Date leaving
position
Month

Year

(4;

(5)

(6)

Title of position
(secretary, buyer,
owner, etc.)

Leave
this
column
blank

Nature of business
(store, bank, in­
dependent busi­
ness, kind of pro­
fession, etc.)

(7)

(8)

Leave
this
column
blank

How
secured.
(See list
1 below)

(9)

(10)

(11)

(!2)

Yearly salary
Reason for Number of Cause of
or earnings
delayed
from this posi­ leaving. months un­ reemploy­
(See list
tion. (See
employed ment. (See
2 below)
note 2 below)
list 3 below)

j Lack of interest
k Lack of advancement
In column (10), “Reason for leaving,” put letter indi"
/ Better opportunity
eating reason which applies in your case.
m Marriage
n Other personal reasons
Lost position because of:
o Family reasons
a Reduction of force due to business depression
LIST 3
6 Dissolving of business
c Merger
In column (12), “Cause of delayed reemployment,’
d Department discontinued or consolidated with
put letter indicating reason which applies in your case.
another
a Good position not available
e Change of management
•
6 No work
/Job discontinued due to new inventions or introduc­
c Education
tion of radically changed methods
d Illness of self
g Discharged for other reasons
e Illness or death in home
Withdrew because of:
/ Leisure
h Inadequate payment
g Marriage
i Dissatisfaction with conditions
h Pressing home duties
No™ 2^ a ?ew position one taken after a period of unemployment, even if it means a return to a former position,
jnote 2. state earnings for the given position only.
Lnless change m salary accompanies change in position, give in this column first and last salary in the position.

In column (8), “How secured,” put letter indicating
method of securing job which applies in your case.
a Newspaper advertisement
b Friend in the business
c Individual canvass
d Family influence
e Heard indirectly of vacancy
/ School or college placement bureau
g Fee-charging placement bureau
h Non-fee:charging placement bureau
i Promotion within the company
j Transfer within the company
k Services sought by new employer
l Personal application




O

AGE FA CTO R IN B U SIN E SS AND T H E PR O FE SSIO N S

1.
2.
3.
4.


Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, One Federal Reserve Bank Plaza, St. Louis, MO 63102