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Chapter Five— Outsiders and Cheap Lodging Houses

1. Riis, How the Other Half Lives , 69. [BACK]

2. Anderson, The Hobo , 87-89, 172-173, quoting Ben Reitman, the self-styled "King of the Hoboes." [BACK]

3. Hoch and Slayton, New Homeless and Old , 41; Anderson, The Hobo , 3, 14, 106; Wallace, Skid Row as a Way of Life , 18-19. [BACK]

4. Anderson, The Hobo , xviii, xiv. [BACK]

5. For this labor group in San Francisco, see Nylander, "The Casual Laborer of California"; Wood, "The California State Commission of Immigration and Housing," 3-22. [BACK]

6. On 1907, Anderson, The Hobo , 63-64. On occupancy, see Nylander, "The Casual Laborer of California," 3-22, and Olmstead and Olmstead et al., The Yerba Buena Center , 247. On winter layoffs, see California Bureau of Labor Statistics, 19th Biennial Report, 1919-1920 , 231, and Averbach, "San Francisco's South of Market District," 199, 202, 205. California's canning industries employed a work force that was nine-tenths seasonal; two-thirds of the brick and tile makers were seasonal workers. [BACK]

7. On the home guard see esp., Anderson, The Hobo , 41-45, 74, 117-119; and UC-HC, Dependent Aged , 63-64. Roger Miller, lyrics from "King of the Road" (Nashville: Tree Publishing Company, 1964). [BACK]

8. Riis, How the Other Half Lives , 69. Specifically, Riis spoke here of young men mingled in the 25-cents-a-night cubicle hotels in the Bowery; not all of these men were migrant laborers. [BACK]

9. Hoch and Slayton, New Homeless and Old , 37-40; McEntire, "Population and Employment Survey of Sacramento's West End." [BACK]

10. On Chinese, see Shumsky, "Tar Flat and Nob Hill," 49-51. On labor agencies, see Tygiel, "Workingmen in San Francisco," 23. In 1880, the vast majority of San Francisco's tobacco and shoemaking workshops were within three blocks of Chinatown, showing their owners' dependence on the Chinese. In 1900, the 14,000 Chinese were 4.1 percent of the city's total population. [BACK]

11. California, UC-HC, Dependent Aged , 75; Hoch and Slayton, New Homeless and Old , 29-32, 38; on blacks in the migrant work force, see John C. Schneider, "Tramping Workers, 1890-1920: A Subcultural View," in Monkkenon, ed., Walking to Work , 212-234. [BACK]

12. One survey found that 60 percent of the older, male day laborer group had never been married and 30 percent had long been widowed. By comparison, in 1920, the national average among all adult males over 55 was only 27 percent single, widowed, or divorced; UC-HC, Dependent Aged , 64. [BACK]

13. UC-HC, Dependent Aged , 58, 68-75; and Averbach, "San Francisco's South of Market District," 209. On modern parallels, see Wallace, Skid Row as a Way of Life , 199-120, and Spradley, You Owe Yourself a Drunk , 76-77. [BACK]

14. "Ten Cent Lodgings," 9. [BACK]

15. Weiner, "Sisters of the Road," 171-188; Martin, "Homeless Women," 32-41; Box-Car Bertha, Sister of the Road , 9, 13-15, 60-68, 132-134. The low national figure is Box-Car Bertha's; the high figure is from the U.S. Women's Bureau, 1933. On the Bowery, see Kennaday, "New York's Hundred Lodging Houses," 489. [BACK]

16. R. D. McKenzie, The Metropolitan Community (New York: McGrawHill, 1933): 245-247. The data were taken from sample tracts of the 1920 U.S. Census. [BACK]

17. Wallace, Skid Row as a Way of Life , 192-194; Anderson, The Hobo , 13, 129; Solenberger, One Thousand Homeless Men . On unemployables, see Ford, Slums and Housing , 346-347; UC-HC, Dependent Aged , 68. [BACK]

18. One expert defined the mentally ill as including the "insane, feebleminded, or epileptic"; she found only 197 alcoholics out of 1,000 men; Solenberger, One Thousand Homeless Men . Another observer cites a 1950s study that found only 8 percent of the excessive drinkers on skid row to be alcoholics; Wallace, Skid Row as a Way of Life , 187-188. On cocaine, see Anderson, The Hobo , 67, 97. [BACK]

19. Anderson, The Hobo , 5, 15. [BACK]

20. Richard H. Dillon, Shanghaiing Days (New York: Coward-McCann, 1961): 38-45, 212-215; Felix Riesenberg, Jr., Golden Gate: The Story of San Francisco Harbor (New York: Alfred Knopf, 1940): 128-132, 153-161, 206, 234-299. [BACK]

21. Byrnes, "Nurseries of Crime," 355-362; Devine, "The Shiftless and Floating City Population," 160-161; Wolfe, Lodging House Problem , 137-138, 181-182. [BACK]

22. Hoch and Slayton, New Homeless and Old , 44, 60-61. [BACK]

23. I have borrowed "no-family house" from Lars Lerup, who uses the term for a conceptual house design. [BACK]

24. See saloon stairway photo in Aronovici, Housing Conditions in the City of Saint Paul , 59. Liu, "Chinatown Residential Hotels," shows doorway distinctions on 8, 109. [BACK]

25. On prices, see Anderson, The Hobo , 29ff.; Riis, How the Other Half Lives , 69-72. Riis gives the prices in 1890 as 25, 15, 10, and 7 cents. The reformer's full phrase for a city's cheapest hotels was often "cheap hotels, lodging houses, and flops." The more generic term for the entire rank was "cheap lodging house." Common variants of "lodging house" added the price, as in "Ten Cent Lodging House." [BACK]

26. The California State Tuberculosis Commission inspector, Johanna von Wagner, in SFHA, Second Report (1913): 26. [BACK]

27. Groth, "Forbidden Housing," 522-535. In 1910, most cheap lodging house ratios were worse than 1:20; by 1930, most owners had added plumbing, and the ratios were better than 1:20. [BACK]

28. The Central Hotel, probably built in about 1909, is described in CSRA, Transients in California , 181. Its owner was Edward Rolkin, profiled in chap. 6. The building, at 564-586 Third Street, across from South Park, had a bath-to-room ratio of 1:18. [BACK]

29. Anderson, "Lodging Houses," 595, and Chicago Department of Public Welfare, "Fifty Cheap Lodging Houses," 66-73. Other useful glimpses of cu- soft

bicle rooms, in chronological order: Riis, How the Other Half Lives , 72; Josiah Flynt [Josiah Flynt Willard], Tramping with Tramps (New York: Century Company, 1901): 123; Anderson, The Hobo , 30, 132; Hayner, "The Hotel," 48-49; Hayner, Hotel Life , 29; Ford, A Few Remarks , 15; CIH, First Annual Report (1915): 80; CIH, Second Annual Report (1916): 226-228; Hoch and Slayton, New Homeless and Old , 46-47, 101-102. Gentry, Madams of San Francisco , 186-187, gives measurements of San Francisco cribs in a cheap prostitution house he saw: height, 6 ¢ 6 ¢¢ ; length, 6 ¢ 9 ¢¢ ; width, 4 ¢ 6 ¢¢ . [BACK]

30. Hoch and Slayton, New Homeless and Old , 44-45, 60-61. [BACK]

31. The wallet detail is courtesy of Prof. Warren Roberts, Folklore Institute, Indiana University, describing his stay in a military ward-style domicile in World War II; interview in Newark, Delaware, May 5, 1984. See also Irvine, "A Bunk-House and Some Bunk-House Men." [BACK]

32. Abbott, The Tenements of Chicago , 164. [BACK]

33. Folsom Street, in SFHA, Second Report (1913): 25-26. New York, in Ford, Slums and Housing , 346, quoting Kennaday study of 1905; CIH, First Annual Report (1915): 80. New York's Kenton Hotel, 333 Bowery, had the top two floors in wards, the next two in cubicles, and the ground floor in commercial uses. [BACK]

34. Gentry, Madams of San Francisco , 186-188, 204, 215-218; Woolston, Prostitution in the United States , 104, 139; Abbott, The Tenements of Chicago , 112. On canvas partitions in some crib brothels, see Norman Maclean, A River Runs Through It and Other Stories (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1976): 174-207. On the "municipal crib," a 100-cubicle hotel owned and operated in part by city officials, see Walton Bean, Boss Reuf's San Francisco , 45-46. [BACK]

35. "Ten Cent Lodgings," 9. [BACK]

36. Anderson, The Hobo , 132; see also Kennaday, "New York's One Hundred Rooming Houses," 487, 489; Hoch and Slayton, New Homeless and Old , 48. [BACK]

37. In 1910, the four-story Milton House, near Third and Howard in San Francisco, had 120 rooms (cubicles, surely) yet only 11 basins, 5 toilets, and no baths in the entire structure. On towels, Aronovici, Housing Conditions in the City of Saint Paul , 59. On other conditions, see especially Anderson, The Hobo , 29, 132; SFHA, Second Report (1913): 25; Riis, How the Other Half Lives , 69; Hoch and Slayton, New Homeless and Old , 48-49. [BACK]

38. On California, see Groth, "Forbidden Housing," 523-529; on Chicago, see Bogue, Skid Row in American Cities , 84; on New York, see Blackburn, "Single Room Occupancy in New York City," 2-8. On codes and enforcement, see chap. 8 below. [BACK]

39. The Bonanza was at 867-869 Market, near Fifth Street, in the 1880s. It did not survive the fire of 1906. The top-floor shoe factory suggests the building was a commercial loft structure; hence the likelihood that the lodgings were of a minimal sort (Sanborn Insurance Maps, 1885, 1905). [BACK]

40. Turish's structure, built about 1906, filled its 20- by 70-foot lot at 211 Minna Street, between Third and Fourth streets (a block later occupied by the Yerba Buena Gardens project). [BACK]

41. Riis, How the Other Half Lives , 72. Other sources on flophouses are Anderson, The Hobo , 30-32 (see esp. his account of a night in a flophouse); Chicago Department of Public Welfare, "Fifty Cheap Lodging Houses," 68-70; UC-HC, Dependent Aged , 74-75; CIH, Second Annual Report (1916): 226. [BACK]

42. CSRA, Transients in California , 81-82. [BACK]

43. CIH, Second Annual Report (1916): 50-51; Sherry H. Olson, Baltimore: The Building of an American City (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press, 1980): 215; U.S. Bureau of Labor, Housing of the Working People in the United States by Employers , 1191-1243. [BACK]

44. On Chicago City Hall, see Hoch and Slayton, New Homeless and Old , 53-57. On police stations, see Riis, How the Other Half Lives , 72. [BACK]

45. Mostoller, "A Single Room," 191-216. Hoch and Slayton, New Homeless and Old , 55-57; Robbins, "What Constitutes a Model Municipal Lodging House"; "Model Lodging Houses for New York," 59-61; Philpott, The Slum and the Ghetto , 98-99. On county measures in San Francisco: UC-HC, Dependent Aged , 75. In 1909, a new Municipal Lodging House in New York had showers, a fumigation room, a dining room, a laundry, and six large ward rooms with a total of 912 beds; Charles Zueblin, American Municipal Progress (New York: Macmillan, 1902): 102. [BACK]

46. Reconstructed as condominiums and called "The Atrium," the Mills Hotel No. 1 in 1990 still stood between Bleeker, Sullivan, and Thompson streets. Flagg is known for model tenement house designs as well as for the Singer office building. On the Mills No. 1 as "welfare hotel," see Francis X. Clines, "Hotel in 'Village' Step to Nowhere," New York Times (July 16, 1970): 36; "Down-at-Heels Hotel Gets a Natty New Identity," New York Times (September 28, 1975): R-1, R-12; Siegal, Outposts of the Forgotten , 7-8, 11. [BACK]

47. "Unique Workingmen's Hotel for San Diego," 80-82. The J. D. and A. B. Spreckels Securities Company sponsored the hotel; its architect, Harrison Albright of Los Angeles, worked from designs by Lloyd Wright. Each room measures 8 by 11 feet, with no cubicles or open wards, and the lobby spaces are cavernous. It is, in fact, more a rooming house rank building than a lodging house. See also Eckert, The Unseen Elderly , 42-45.

For a wonderfully detailed account of a company town that had dormitory and rooming house buildings in addition to houses, see Candee, Atlantic Heights , 63-109. For a period architect on how to design a proper workers' hotel for a company town, see Kilham, "Housing the Single Worker." Hotels like these dot the company towns of the West and the Southeast. [BACK]

48. Johnson, "The Lodging House Problem in Minneapolis"; field notes are Aronovici, Housing Conditions of the City of Saint Paul , 61. On missions of the 1870s, a good description is Sala, America Revisited , 70-71. [BACK]

49. On San Francisco, see UC-HC, Dependent Aged , 73; on Chicago, Hoch and Slayton, New Homeless and Old , 57-60. Dorothy Richardson bitterly recalled a charitable home for working girls in Richardson, The Long Day . On blacks, see Sally Chesham, Born to Battle: The Salvation Army in America (Chicago: Rand McNally, 1965): 252-253. [BACK]

50. Hunt, "The Housing of Non-Family Groups of Men in Chicago," 145-170. [BACK]

51. The term "skid row" was derived from the old Skid Road section of Seattle, where loggers lived next to the street where logs had been skidded down to the waterfront; Wallace, Skid Row as a Way of Life , vii, 13-45. On the distinction between the hobo district of the 1920s and skid row, see Schneider, "Skid Row as an Urban Neighborhood," 167-189; Jackson, "The Bowery," 68-79; Hoch and Slayton, New Homeless and Old , 87-93. I have also relied on the early historical study of Leonard Blumberg et al., Liquor and Poverty: Skid Row as a Human Condition (New Brunswick: Rutgers Center of Alcohol Studies, 1978), which uses San Francisco as one of three case studies. [BACK]

52. Averbach, "San Francisco's South of Market District," CIH, First Annual Report (1915): 11; Groth, "Forbidden Housing," 331ff. Population figures are from the U.S. decennial census. In Chicago, the winter population of the analogous Main Stem area could be 75,000. [BACK]

53. Much of the following description relies on Averbach, "San Francisco's South of Market District," 197-218, with material added from city directories, insurance maps, photographs, and skid row descriptions found in Anderson, The Hobo; CSRA, Transients in California; Hoch and Slayton, New Homeless and Old; and Hartman, The Transformation of San Francisco , 53-59. [BACK]

54. Nels Anderson, The American Hobo: An Autobiography (Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1975): 85. On no place to sit, see Bauer and McEntire, "Relocation Study, Single Male Population," 4-5. [BACK]

55. Riesenberg, Golden Gate , 250. The year when these prices were in effect is unclear. Coffee Dan's later became popular with middle-income patrons. [BACK]

56. UC-HC, Dependent Aged , 73. This man lived in the South of Market in San Francisco; the original breakfast spelling was "coffee an'." [BACK]

57. Anderson, The Hobo , 33-35. [BACK]

58. Schneider, "Skid Row as an Urban Neighborhood," 173-180; Anderson, The Hobo , xix, 107-108; Averbach, "San Francisco's South of Market District," 210. [BACK]

59. Bowden, "The Dynamics of City Growth." The neighborhood was centered on Pacific Avenue, just east from the modern North Beach area. [BACK]

60. Nee and Nee, Longtime Californ ', 30-57; Connie Young Yu, "A History of San Francisco Chinatown Housing," Amerasia Journal 8, 1 (Spring/Summer 1981); Yip, "San Francisco's Chinatown." On Chinatown as a tourist attraction in the 1880s, see Sala, America Revisited , 460, 493-494. The Chi- soft

natown area was bounded roughly by California Street on the south, Powell Street on the west, Pacific Street on the north, and Kearny Street on the east. [BACK]

61. Yip, "San Francisco's Chinatown," 168-234. In the 1880s, the double building standard for Chinatown was very obvious; in the 1887 edition of the San Francisco Sanborn Maps, see sheets 9 and 13 for shifts in building types at the edges of Chinatown. For an official example of culturally explaining away the situation, see CIH, Second Annual Report (1916): 262; on recent crowding in the family association buildings, Chinatown Neighborhood Improvement Center, Update: Special Issues (1980): 9. [BACK]

62. Description from Sanborn Insurance Maps; see Trillin, "Some Thoughts on the International Hotel Controversy," 116-120. [BACK]

63. On the Mexican population, see Godfrey, Neighborhoods in Transition , and CIH, First Annual Report (1915): 66. In the late 1800s, Columbus Street was known for its Mexican food. Curtis Choy's film, The Fall of the International Hotel , is the most vivid source on Manilatown. According to Hayner, who worked in Seattle, white residents in Los Angeles and Seattle preferred Japanese hotels for their better management; Hotel Life . On racial mixtures, see manuscript survey cards in the Bancroft Library for SFHACC, Real Property Survey, 1939 . The Bo-Chow Hotel, at 102 South Park, was all-Japanese in the 1930s. The Clayton is at 657 Clay Street. [BACK]

64. On separate black lodging house areas, see Hoch and Slayton, New Homeless and Old , 24-26, 29-32. Later steel mills to the south also hired large numbers of black workers. [BACK]

65. At least 600 cheap SRO rooms were in this outlying cluster; Groth, "Forbidden Housing," 296-301, 331ee. [BACK]

66. UC-HC, Dependent Aged , 72-74; Anderson, The Hobo , 69; Hayner, "The Hotel," 87. A recent study is Burki, "Housing the Low-Income Urban Elderly," 279-280. [BACK]

67. CSRA, Transients in California , 120, 186. The authors reported that in San Francisco, only the Scandinavian Seamen's Mission still provided the banking service but that in all hotels, the wiser laborers still paid their room rent in advance when winter or recessions ended their employment. [BACK]

68. Zorbaugh, Gold Coast and Slum , 74; on charging higher rents, see Wolfe, Lodging House Problem , 140. [BACK]

69. Spradley, You Owe Yourself a Drunk , 71, 97-107, 252-262. [BACK]

70. On setting becoming life-style, I have relied on interviews with Jim Baumohl, February 12 and March 5, 1981. See also Anderson, The Hobo , 40-57, 87-106; Wallace, Skid Row as a Way of Life , 125-134, 166, 179-202; Spradley, You Owe Yourself a Drunk , 252-262; and Siegal, Outposts of the Forgotten , 42-44, 51, 68. Siegal reports that transient guests used "house" for their room, while longer-term residents used "house" for the whole hotel. [BACK]

71. Tamara Hareven, Family Time and Industrial Time: The Relationship Between the Family and Work in a New England Industrial Community (New continue

York: Cambridge University press, 1982), shows how family workers, too, wove flexibility into their housing tenure but with generally much larger swings of time. [BACK]

72. On the dichotomies of rural facades and interiors, see Henry Glassie, "Folk Eighteenth-Century Cultural Process in Delaware Valley Folk Building," Winterthur Portfolio 7 (1972): 29-57; and Thomas C. Hubka, Big House, Little House, Back House, Barn: The Connected Farm Buildings of New England (Hanover: University Press of New England, 1984). Commercial buildings of the last 100 years often share this lodging house facade-interior split. See William H. Jordy, "Functionalism as Fact and Symbol: Louis Sullivan's Commercial Buildings, Tombs, and Banks," in Jordy, Progressive and Academic Ideals at the Turn of the Twentieth Century , American Buildings and their Architects, vol. 4 (New York: Oxford University Press, 1972): 83-179. On smaller false-front store buildings, see Kingston Heath, "False-Front Architecture on Montana's Urban Frontier," Perspectives in Vernacular Architecture 3 (Columbia: University of Missouri Press, 1989): 199-213. Owners and designers used the same calculated, carefully designed dichotomies between facade and interior in the tall brick tenement buildings of New York. [BACK]

73. The case for the immigrant Chinese laborers living in Chinatowns is more complex, since their household formation and rights to property were limited until the 1960s and since they often cooked for themselves. For black and Latino laborers, racial segregation and ethnic prejudice surely overshadowed the role of residence in this process. [BACK]

74. Codes and other reforms are explored in chap. 8. [BACK]

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