Wednesday, May 2, 2018

100 Years ago Building homes for workers

A very early view of the Baldwin Locomotives in Eddystone from about 1912.
NOTE: During World War One and Two the Federal Government built houses, "concrete" houses to house workers in Delaware County. Places like, Sun Ship, Baldwin Locomotives,Westinghouse etc. were working 24/7 and workers from all the United States flocked here to work and housing was at a premium. The article below is from one hundred years ago.

 Uncle Sam Coming to the Relief of Munition workers and Shipyard Employees in This City Soon
                Uncle Sam is taking the bull by the horns, and will himself erect dwellings for munition workers of this city and other sections.  This news comes from New York.  Outside of two or three industries who have erected homes for their workmen scarcely any effort has been made to provide accommodations for workers, and the employers have had a big problem to deal with the past two years.
                According to Mayor McDowell, there are about seven thousand persons in this city who are living in boarding houses and hotels, looking to have their own homes.
                The Mayor asserts there are about one thousand homeless families in this city, families of workmen who have come here from other places attracted by high wages.  Every resident here is conversant with the overcrowded conditions of boarding houses, and other places accommodating men,
And with the high rent proposition and news that the government will interfere was received with gratification. Just what form the proposed building operation is not known. Where dwellings cold be erected is another question, for real estate values in and adjacent to the city have leaped high during the past three years.  The government proposes to expend a billion dollars to provide homes for its men at homes doing their bit, and the location of such dwellings would be effected quickly and thoroughly.
                Henry Atterbury Smith, an architect, has been serving as an investigator for eastern centers, including Cleveland, Akron, Pittsburg, the Naugatuck Valley, including Bridgeport, and this city, and asserts that some means must be found for providing cheap money for building proper dwellings for workers if Government war requirements are to be supplied at the pace the present stage of the war demands.  The investigation developed the fact that aw wholesale shifting of industrial population is forcing a condition that will prove to be important in meeting at an early date the growing demand for housing and the present timidity of building money.
                SEES BUILDING REVIVAL – This fact, coupled with the belief of Walter T. Smith, vice president of the George A. Fuller Company, who has his finer on more than $25,000,000 worth of proposed new building construction the country over that sometime around the first of the year the building situation as a problem would substantially clear itself, an increasing number of persons interested in building construction are led to believe that a demand for construction is gradually developing that despite the present price levels construction work would again get under way.
                In the building material price market, a general stability of levels has prevailed during the last seven weeks.  Increases that have occurred, such as, for instance, the change in the price of Indiana limestone from 83 cents to 93 cents a cubic foot to the present level quoted last week of 89 cents to $1.04 is due to the increase in freight rates that have become effective on some of the western railroads.

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