Unit 3 Letter Home Assignment
SS360 – 01
February 23, 1912
Dear Mom & Dad:
I hope this letter finds you both doing well. I wanted to write you both to let you know that I made it to New York City. The boat ride in was long and a lot of people got sick. When I first stepped off the boat, I was shocked to see so many people just standing and sitting around with their luggage. I noticed that there a group of ladies who were checking to see if any of us who came over needed any assistance, clothes, or food that they could offer. Seeing how big New York City is, it makes me miss Mexico so much. I miss you guys dearly as well, but I had to take advantage of this opportunity for all of us. I miss you guys so much and know that I love you all dearly. So let me tell you what has been going on with me since arriving here.
New York City is so much different than Mexico. There are so many people here from different ethnic groups walking around either to or from work, people are dressed real fancy, some people are rude, but I met a few ladies at the docks that were very nice. These women were willing to assist me and showed me where I could find a room to rent. She took me to a tenement building were quite a bit of other immigrants are living here. The building is really small and it smells of rotten sewage. We are basically living on top of each other and I feel like the place would crumble at any moment. The days here are not so bad, but we don’t get a whole lot of light. The nights are really cold, the windows tend to let the cool night air in around the edges, but I’ve managed to use extra blankets to keep myself warm. I heard that they are planning on building more tenement buildings and hopefully, the rest of the family will be able to join me and we can all stay together.
Since I’ve been here, I’ve found a job working at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory in New York City. Getting hired was so easy. Mom I’m sure you would be hired here as well. Dad, they have quite a bit of factories that make parts for machines and even a cigar rolling factory that you might find work at. I work 12 hours every day except Sundays sewing the sleeves onto shirts. We only a break to eat our mid-day meal and then we have to get back to work. The factory is very hot and they don’t like to open the windows. With so much fiber dust in the air, it’s almost hard to breathe. It’s an easy job and I get paid $6 a week. I don’t mind the long hours since it keeps me busy and from feeling homesick.
I’ve made a few friends at the factory and one of them stay in the same tenement building as I do. We walk to work together and keep each other safe. The streets of New York City are bad and people will try to take advantage of us women. She stays on a different floor than I do, but she always checks on me to make sure I have enough food or clothes. Well, I better not make this letter too long, but just know that I miss you and love you so much.
I’ll try to write you again real soon!
All my love,
Dubois, E. C. & Dumenil, L. (2012). Through Women’s Eyes: An American History with Documents (Third edition). Boston, MA: Bedford/St. Martins.
U. (2015, March 24). Methodist History: Welcoming Women Immigrants (UMTV). Retrieved February 20, 2018, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s0f34dhNeBA
(n.d.). Retrieved February 20, 2018, from http://www.thirteen.org/brooklyn/history/history4.html
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