By Popular Demand: What Have the Harvey Girls Been Doing Lately?

"They kept the West in food—and wives," noted humorist Will Rogers. But the Harvey Girls represent so much more. Archival materials, not available when a similar class was offered Summer 2017, provides an opportunity to appreciate even more of their legacy and that of entrepreneur Fred Harvey. It was Harvey who envisioned providing good food at nice places to travelers journeying west along Atchison,Topeka, and Santa Fe rail lines. Opening his first dining room in 1876 and, as the number grew, the need for waitresses caused him to begin recruiting women. Over the period 1883 to 1950, more than 100,000 young women answered the call. Why even Judy Garland wanted to be a Harvey Girl!

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