Manhattan Trade School for Girls (1911)

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donnie
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Manhattan Trade School for Girls (1911)

Post by donnie » Mon Feb 04, 2019 2:58 pm

This is a fascinating documentary-type film I ran into years ago on the National Film Preservation Foundation website. It shows the details and daily activities of girls in a vocational school. The purpose of the school was to take underprivileged girls and give them training as a means to earn a decent living; while at the same time looking after such things as nutrition, physical fitness, etc.

In addition to the subject matter, an interesting thing about this film is the score the NFPF has provided. It is rather unusual—ok, let’s say odd—but somehow very fitting and and just makes the film. They’ve basically used a girls chorus to sing sections of the title cards interspersed with a string quartet score. Well, you have to hear it…

Anyway, if you are interested in an intricate look at what one of these schools was like in 1911, this will be fascinating to see. And again it’s worth watching just for the quirky score. :-)

Available for free viewing at the NFPF website:

https://www.filmpreservation.org/preser ... girls-1911#
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Kitty
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Re: Manhattan Trade School for Girls (1911)

Post by Kitty » Sun Feb 24, 2019 2:06 pm

Oh, my! Thank you for sharing! This is so fascinating to me. Did you read the notes on the right side? Very interesting stuff. It's amazing that a group of people cared enough about young women at that early era to make a school like this. These are people who cared about the future of America.
A minor thing I noted: around the 6:13 mark, there is an alphabet chart on the wall, but it seems they have left out the i and the z. I wonder what that's all about?
The back straightening exercise is obviously a lost art. :lol:
It's odd that on the website, the production company is listed as 'unknown' but it's apparently a Pathe, indicated by the last card of the film.
Being a girl, I can't help but feel uplifted by the pretty clothes that are revealed in that last scene. I feel like going out and dressing up in my best for a tea party! (the little girl in me has never left, and perhaps never will!! :lol: ) I am left wondering what kinds of colors these things were.
I think it's pretty cool that they named some of the girls. I wonder if the salaries listed when they came back to report were accurate? (Was that information similar to the extreme "You can earn x amount of dollars by attending our facility!" with an asterisk next to it... *only in rare situations"?) I also like to see that their claim to place the girls who graduated actually was a thing once upon a time. I say this, because many colleges tell their students that but don't live up to the lofty promise.
I really like the jaunty music, and it's pretty weird that they are singing sections of the title cards.
It was such a different time then. Can you imagine a free school teaching young people a trade --- for immigrants especially --- existing today? I don't know of one. If you do, please enlighten me!
You trying to tell me you didn't hear that shriek? That was something trying to get out of its premature grave, and I don't want to be here when it does. - Phantom of the Paradise (1974)

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donnie
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Re: Manhattan Trade School for Girls (1911)

Post by donnie » Wed Feb 27, 2019 1:12 pm

Kitty wrote:
Sun Feb 24, 2019 2:06 pm
Oh, my! Thank you for sharing! This is so fascinating to me. Did you read the notes on the right side?
I'm glad you liked it! :D Figured it would be up your alley. ;) Yes, I read the notes. They are also in the book that came with the dvd set.
Kitty wrote:
Sun Feb 24, 2019 2:06 pm
It's amazing that a group of people cared enough about young women at that early era to make a school like this. These are people who cared about the future of America....Can you imagine a free school teaching young people a trade --- for immigrants especially --- existing today? I don't know of one. If you do, please enlighten me!
I'm not aware of anything like that today. Yes, that was pretty progressive for the time. I imagine that changed a lot of girls' lives for the better in a big way. A thought that just occurred to me: I wonder if there are any descendents of any of those girls today that are aware their ancestor attended that school. And if they are, are they aware this film exists? And if they saw it, could they maybe even identify the ancestor? Probably not, but it's interesting to think about.
Kitty wrote:
Sun Feb 24, 2019 2:06 pm

A minor thing I noted: around the 6:13 mark, there is an alphabet chart on the wall, but it seems they have left out the i and the z. I wonder what that's all about?
The back straightening exercise is obviously a lost art. :lol:
You have good eyes! I don't have a clue what the missing letters would be about—unless they are patterns they taking down to copy or something. But there doesn't seem to be a place left for the I. Maybe they just lost them? :) Yes, I thought the back straightening exercise was quite interesting. I wonder if it really did much back straightening. I don't think it would have cured scoliosis, which may be what they were aiming at-? Or maybe it was just to improve posture.
Kitty wrote:
Sun Feb 24, 2019 2:06 pm
I wonder if the salaries listed when they came back to report were accurate? (Was that information similar to the extreme "You can earn x amount of dollars by attending our facility!" with an asterisk next to it... *only in rare situations"?) I also like to see that their claim to place the girls who graduated actually was a thing once upon a time. I say this, because many colleges tell their students that but don't live up to the lofty promise.
Hard to know, but I would imagine they really did follow up with them after graduation, since the organization seems to have been altruistic with no profit being made.
Kitty wrote:
Sun Feb 24, 2019 2:06 pm
I feel like going out and dressing up in my best for a tea party! (the little girl in me has never left, and perhaps never will!! :lol: )
Well, you are still technically a Daisy, you know.

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