The Library of Virginia >> Exhibitions >> Working Out Her Destiny
  Working Out Her Destiny
Work - Government Employment

Introduction

Shaping Public Opinion

Women's Organizations

Education

Work

Service to Country

Votes for Women

Electing
Women

Where are the Women:
Examples from the LVA Collections

Notable
Virginia
Women

Timeline

Related Resources

Government Employment | Women in Business | Architecture 
Women at Work: Selected Photographs from the Library of Virginia Collections

Despite the hardships of the Civil War, an increased demand for clerical work and a shortage of men drew women into public employment for the first time. After the Virginia General Assembly enacted a law authorizing the state treasurer to hire women to sign, number, and cut Virginia currency, many women seized the chance for regular employment. Their letters demonstrated their handwriting and numbering skills, but their letters of recommendation more often focused on the women’s moral character rather than their ability to do the work.

Letter of Application from M. C. Pannell. 31 January 1863. Manuscript. Applications of ladies for clerkships on Virginia treasury notes, 1861–1864. Auditor of Public Accounts. Administration of State Government: Public Debt–Treasury Notes. The Library of Virginia

Letter from Hugh W. Sheffey to Mr. Bennett. 16 February 1863. Manuscript. Applications of ladies for clerkships on Virginia treasury notes, 1861–1864. Auditor of Public Accounts. Administration of State Government: Public Debt–Treasury Notes. The Library of Virginia

Letter of Application for Cecilia M. Barry. 1 January 1863. Manuscript. Applications of ladies for clerkships on Virginia treasury notes, 1861–1864. Auditor of Public Accounts. Administration of State Government: Public Debt–Treasury Notes. The Library of Virginia

Letter from Maria A. Wright to Jonathan McCally Bennett. N.d. . Manuscript. Applications of ladies for clerkships on Virginia treasury notes, 1861–1864. Auditor of Public Accounts. Administration of State Government: Public Debt–Treasury Notes. The Library of Virginia

Letter of Application from E. W. White. 7 March 1863. Manuscript. Applications of ladies for clerkships on Virginia treasury notes, 1861–1864. Auditor of Public Accounts. Administration of State Government: Public Debt–Treasury Notes. The Library of Virginia

Letter of Application from E. White. 1863. Manuscript. Applications of ladies for clerkships on Virginia treasury notes, 861–1864. Auditor of Public Accounts. Administration of State Government: Public Debt—Treasury Notes. The Library of Virginia

Life History of Julia C. Mack T. Eads, interviewer. c. 1938. Typescript. WPA Life Histories, Federal Government Collection.

Life History of Daisy Collins. John W. Garrett, interviewer. 1940. Manuscript. WPA Life Histories, Federal Government Collection.

Life History of Susie Rosa Catherine Byrd. 1938. Typescript. The Work Projects Administration. Records, c. 1933-1942. The Library of Virginia

“WPA Makes Possible Bird and Wild Flower Sanctuary at Petersburg.” Donald C. Holden, project supervisor. Published in The W.P.A. Record in Virginia. March 1937. Magazine. The Library of Virginia

With Paintbrush and Shovels: Preserving Virginia’s Wildflowers. Nancy Kober. Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 2000. Bound volume. The Library of Virginia
 

"Rediscovering the Forgotten Garden" an exhibition on the history of Petersburg's Lee Park will be shown for the first time at the Library of Virginia from March 8 to 26. Developed by The Petersburg Garden Club, the exhibit explores both the natural and man-made history of this 330 acre green oasis within Petersburg's city limits. h Petersburg's Lee Park