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During her years at Columbia University, Mary Frayser learned a great deal about the problems of communities. Through her participation in settlement projects, she became aware of the terrible conditions surrounding the lives of working people and she felt that only through education could these circumstances be improved. Education was imperative, not only for the working class, but also for those who had the economic power to make tangible changes in the environment of the community. Frayser left New York on fire to carry her ideas to the people of the South.

After Frayser graduated from Columbia, she began her college teaching career in the Domestic Science and Arts Department at Bessie Tift College in Georgia. Although Frayser was an excellent teacher and received much praise both from the students and from her superiors, she yearned for a more challenging position. Both M. L. Duggan, Trustee of Bessie Tift College and State Superintendent of Education for Georgia and C. H. S. Jackson, President of Bessie Tift College praised

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the work Frayser had done there as distinctly progressive.1

Mary Frayser completed her first year at Bessie Tift College and began looking for a position where she could get out among the people, use her teaching skills, and put her social commitment into practice in the community. Frayser learned of an extension service opening at Winthrop College and was interested in securing the position. She asked James E. Russell, Dean at the Teacher's College Columbia University, for a recommendation. Russell sent Dr. David Bancroft Johnson, President of Winthrop College, a glowing reference. He stated, "I have every confidence in her and speak to you as I have probably never done in behalf of any teacher."2 In a telegram to Dr. Johnson concerning the home extension service situation, Frayser stated, "I want the position. It is what I am especially to do and is immensely interesting to me."3

Frayser impressed Dr. Johnson enough that he asked her to come to Winthrop College. Between 1912 and 1917 she worked

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under the authority of Winthrop College, teaching families new ways to improve their lives, first in the mill villages then in rural communities throughout South Carolina. Frayser did not work alone, for she had an uncanny ability to get others interested in and committed to work toward the improvement of social problems.

The extension program Johnson hired Frayser to advance was a cooperative effort of federal, state, and county governments which provided instruction in agriculture and home economics. The extension worker traveled from community to community; her classroom might be a home or community building and in it she gave demonstrations or presented programs on some aspect of home economics. Her explanations of home economic research were in a form that the families could easily apply. Frayser presented material designed to address the problems, needs, and interests of rural women, girls in 4-H Clubs, and other youth groups.4 Frayser believed home and community life would improve if women had training in how to accomplish homemaking tasks more efficiently.

It was through cooperation with state land-grant colleges that home extension service came into existence. The

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Land-Grant Act which passed in 1862 provided for the federal donation of public lands to states and territories for the construction of colleges for the "benefit of agriculture and the mechanical arts." State acceptance of title to these lands obligated it to establish at least one college where the leading object would be "to teach such branches of learning as related to agriculture and the mechanical arts in order to promote the liberal and practical education of the industrial classes."5

If the land-grant colleges were to succeed in their purpose, they had not only to prove their place by service in each state, but must also gain strength as progressive partners in service to the nation.6 The purpose of the land-grant colleges would be accomplished through extension work and experimental stations. This type of work had been started in the 1880s by a handful of men who led the battles for the Hatch Act, passed in 1887, which placed a network of Federal experimental stations under the aegis of the land-grant colleges. The second Morrill Act, passed in 1890, finally

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guaranteed the colleges adequate financing. Land-grant colleges appointed agricultural agents who worked in conjunction with the United States Department of Agriculture and the colleges. At the same time, the agents were gathering converts among commercial farmers through their work involving plant and animal diseases, breeding, and soil depletion. In 1903, Seaman Knapp, a leading lobbyist for the Hatch Act, took practical demonstrations of scientific agriculture into southern fields to counteract a plague of boll weevils. His demonstrations quickly gained supporters for the work. By the second decade of the twentieth century, leaders in towns of the North and South were hiring permanent county agents to demonstrate and educate.7

These land-grant institutions provided education for men and women. The opportunity for learning was not to be the exclusive property of the well-to-do or intellectual elite, but was for all who would carry the burden of citizenship and productive service in a growing nation.8 The land-grant colleges, of which Clemson College of South Carolina was one example, were accompanied by other institutions also interested in promoting this type of experimental work.

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Dr. Johnson had been impressed with plans for extension work employed by Cornell University and the states of Iowa, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Nebraska. In 1912, Johnson secured an appropriation from the South Carolina General Assembly for the establishment of an extension service at Winthrop College. It was to be both a training ground for the Winthrop students and a service to the rural and mill communities. The idea behind this work was to arouse the residents of these communities to a keen interest in recreation, health, gardening and night schools for both sexes.9

When Johnson appointed Mary Frayser extension worker in Home Economics for Winthrop, he wrote,

This is a new and untried work we are undertaking. There are no precedents in the way and we have a virgin field in which to work out our own salvation. There is great opportunity for constructive and notable work."10

Frayser asked Dr. Johnson how she was to start and he suggested that she write the members of the State Federation of Clubs explaining her plans and enlisting their help with various projects. "That's exactly what I did. I wrote to the

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presidents of every single woman's club in South Carolina."11 She also wrote to many educators asking for their help. The projects went forward with the cooperation of county superintendents, supervisors of education, and members of both the Chambers of Commerce and women's clubs. There was an immediate response and Frayser offered two-day courses in home economics in rural communities and small towns. In some areas gardening and home economic courses were made a part of regular school work. Frayser organized Homekeepers Clubs and this gave impetus to existing clubs for study of various aspects of family life. "I visited clubs, planned programs for them, worked, traveled and wrote bulletins to guide the work. Indeed, I spun like a top, but it was wonderful and worthwhile."12

While working in the rural communities, the inability of parents to obtain quality medical care for their children often shocked Frayser. There were few nurses and fewer doctors to care for the people in rural communities. At that time, 1912-1913, South Carolina did not have a State Superintendent of Nurses, and Darlington had the only public

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health nurse. In an article Frayser wrote, she said,

We hear a great deal about the conservation of our forests, of our water power, of our birds, but we are just beginning to hear about the conservation of that finest of all our assets, the children of the land."13

Children's welfare was an enduring concern of Frayser's. One of the first projects she undertook when she came to South Carolina dealt with "Baby Work". On 12 April 1912, Congress passed the Children's Bureau Act. Julia C. Lathrop, first Chief of the Bureau, declared that the purpose of the organization was to serve all children, to try to work out the standards of care and protection which would give every child a fair chance in life.14

The Children's Bureau began the first systematic inquiries into the death rate of American babies. In certain designated cities and rural areas, house to house canvassing disclosed a horrifying state of affairs. Babies under one year died at an unimaginable rate: for the United States as a whole, a quarter of a million babies expired each year. The maternal death rate was also shocking, higher than that of any

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other civilized country in the world. 15

The United States government was interested in bringing down these formidably high child mortality rates. The statistics for South Carolina were staggering. Between 1 January and 30 September 1915, there were 18,721 deaths in South Carolina; 6084 of these were children under five years of age and 3,950 were under the age of one. Most of these deaths, according to physicians, were preventable--they represented the high cost of ignorance.16 Lathrop wrote Winthrop College Extension Department and the State Federation of Women's Clubs seeking their help in arousing interest and disseminating knowledge during National Baby Week. Frayser, as Eastern Vice-President of the American Baby Health Contest Association urged cooperation in this observance. She hoped that the outcome would result in securing a District Nurse for many communities and the organization of local Child Welfare Clubs.17

In 1912, the year Frayser began her extension work, Dr. Johnson wanted her to do an exhibit at the State Fair.

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Frayser saw this as another opportunity to bring child welfare to the attention of the public; she said, "I immediately thought what a wonderful chance to do something about the appalling death rate of infants and children in South Carolina, then highest in the nation."18 Frayser contacted club women and together they decided to ask for exhibit space at the fair, with displays on child care and materials which could be given out. There would also be accommodations where a physician and nurse could examine babies on the spot. This exhibit was to be known as "Baby Health Contests." However, Frayser received a letter from the fair authorities stating that, due to the large number of livestock entries, there would be no room for such an exhibit. "Well, I just sat down and wrote that the hundreds of club women in the state were a whole lot more interested in having a state full of healthy babies than of healthy pigs." Frayser got her exhibit.19

Despite the success of the first exhibit, when Frayser requested space for the clinic at the State Fair the next year, Mr. D. F. Efird, State Fair Executive Secretary wrote, "that they were not interested in which child is more

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beautiful, that they wanted to improve the livestock and crops in South Carolina." Frayser replied, "Neither are we women interested in the beauty of children except as it is indicative of health. What we want is to improve South Carolina's best livestock, her children." The Fair accorded the exhibit liberal space and medical personnel examined 350 children.20

Following Efird's acquiescence to the 1913 Fair exhibit, the first physical examinations of children under school age in Rock Hill took place. Physician entered their findings on a score card to be sent to their parents. Frayser traveled throughout South Carolina stirring up interest in more health clinics in other locations. As a result, hundreds of children received a physical and fundamental health and nutrition information was disseminated.

In addition to Frayser's ability to obtain the cooperation of others in her work, she also had a definite ability to plan and write clear, concise pamphlets and bulletins. Winthrop and the home extension office distributed these to the people of South Carolina and they also found their way to many parts of the United States. In her quest for distribution of information on better health care for

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babies, Frayser sent out copies of her bulletin to various state and federal agencies. Judging by the response Frayser received, people put the bulletins to good use everywhere they were acquired.

In conjunction with baby fairs and physical exams, Frayser wrote a bulletin, "The Care and Feeding of Children." This bulletin was quite popular and received praise from various areas. In 1914, Ellen C. Lombard, Secretary Home Economics Division of the Bureau of Education, Department of Interior wrote:

The bulletin which you have sent (Care and Feeding of Children) is so well adapted to the work that we are trying to do that we hope it will be placed in the hands of every mother of children under three years of age.21

A report by Frayser on the clinics and a copy of the bulletin sent to Dr. Lorna L. Meanes, Chairman, Council on Health and Public Instruction, American Medical Association, caused her to reply, "You are doing exactly the work that we are hoping will be done in all sections of the country. I beg to congratulate you."22

Along with her ambitions for the welfare of small

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children came Frayser's desire for the creation of a Homemaker's Club for girls.23 The club's objective was to provide insight into the work of the home and increase skill in the performance of household duties. Activities in these clubs included learning to cook and sew. Frayser wrote many bulletins and sent them to the girls quarterly with instructions on sewing and recipes for the members to try. In many instances the club leader would be a teacher, mother, or a member of the Rural School Improvement Association.24 The work Frayser did with the Homekeeper's Clubs expanded to other parts of the United States. In 1915, Stella Mather, of the Home Economics Department at Kansas State Agricultural College, wrote Frayser, "I am using your bulletin "Homekeeper's Club" in connection with my work on school lunches."25

Frayser traveled extensively throughout South Carolina in her work, actively enlisting the support of county superintendents, district education supervisors, and teachers

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to find out what their communities might be able to accomplish through cooperative efforts. At the invitation of the various county superintendents, Frayser frequently spent a week in a county traveling from school to school where community meetings were held, sometimes three a day. These meetings stimulated community improvement.26 In 1913, the Anderson and Seneca Schools introduced Domestic Science with cooking equipment in each school.27

At the end of the 1912-1913 academic year, Frayser submitted a report to Dr. Johnson on the work in the newly created department for "Extension work in household economics, home and rural sanitation, especially in mill and rural districts."28 Frayser reported that she visited nineteen counties in the state where she made speeches to arouse interest in home and school improvement. The purpose, of the speeches was to base homemaking upon business principles, the work carefully planned and scientifically and systematically done. In order to achieve this aim, she helped organize clubs and urged school trustees to introduce practical work into the

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schools. People recognized the need of "Education for Efficiency," but the work was not easy to establish, for funds were not readily available for equipment or special teachers. When funds needed to be raised, public sentiment was slow to crystallize into definite action. Despite this, some gains were made in every county visited.29

Frayser reported to Johnson on projects accomplished and those still on the drawing board. She started Homemaker's Clubs for both girls and women, school gardening, the study of cooking and sewing as part of regular school work, and inaugurated traveling teachers. These teachers traveled from community to community teaching sewing and other homemaking skills. Their expenses were to be shared by five or more adjacent communities. Extension lectures covered a variety of subjects, among them, the "Care and Feeding of Children," "Balanced Diets," "Home Sanitation," and "Bodily Hygiene," "Woman as Spender of Income," "Home Care of the Sick," "The Need of Handwork in the Schools," and others. Frayser gave many of the lectures related to the Domestic Arts and Science classes she had taken while at Teachers College at Columbia University.30

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With the consent of the mill owners, the extension department of Winthrop inaugurated welfare work in the Arcade, Victoria, Hamilton Carharrt, Aragon, and Manchester Mills in Rock Hill, in Mills Mill in Greenville, and the Saxon Mills in Spartanburg. Mr. Alexander Long, President of the Rock Hill mills, promised the use of a building for the extension work. Long engaged Miss Harriett B. Layton's services to conduct the welfare and social work in the communities. In summing up the report to Johnson, Frayser suggested the advisability of introducing Winthrop students to the usefulness of extension service by taking a few periods of the senior students' time to discuss the role of extension agents in school and welfare work.31

Toward the end of the 1912-1913 school year, Frayser asked Dr. Johnson what he would like her to do during the summer. He replied that since she was doing pioneer work, she should study the situation and make a recommendation. While researching the possibilities, Frayser learned that Dr. W. E. Long, Director of Extension Service, Clemson College, had decided to hold a one-day Farmer's Institute in each county throughout the state during the summer. Long planned to take agricultural experts to speak to the farmers. Frayser

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discovered that although the whole family attended the meetings Long made no provision for the women. "This was obviously not a square deal and so I asked Dr. Long's permission to speak to the women." Dr. Long agreed. "The next year every Farmer's Institute carried a professional woman who spoke on the interests of women and children. A small equal rights victory."32

As Frayser spoke day after day during the six weeks of the institutes, she always emphasized the obligations of the homekeeper to prepare and serve nutritional meals and of the farmer to raise what would make such meals possible. She admonished the crowds numbering from forty to two thousand people of both sexes, "You husbands and fathers know a great deal more about how to feed your livestock properly than about how to feed your children adequately;" 'this,' said Frayser, 'often raised a ripple of amusement, but was never denied.' "33

Traveling around the state doing work in two different areas, rural and mill communities, was taxing. Frayser thought when she came to South Carolina that the work would be

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more organized, that certain phases of the Home Economic work would be entrusted to Edith Parrott, first State Home Demonstration agent, and certain other phases to herself. "Of course, the matter of organization was in the hands of the gentlemen. The field was new so there were no guideposts.34

According to Frayser, it was a hardship spending six days a week in the field. It was difficult to accomplish the necessary tasks in strange and unfamiliar surroundings. There were letters that had to be answered, work to be planned, equipment to be packed and unpacked, and people to be seen. She continued to seek the interest and help of club women in her work. Frayser informed Dr. Johnson of a lengthened stay in one area because four Daughters of the American Revolution had made arrangements to see her concerning work in their communities. "I must get the interest of club women. I have no other helpers."35

Frayser was deeply committed to Winthrop and its extension program. She felt that Winthrop could and would accomplish great social awareness and change. The work already undertaken had elicited a positive response from the

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people of South Carolina. Winthrop and the state paid Frayser's salary and the federal government paid Demonstration Agent Parrott's salary, although they both worked out of Winthrop College.

Apparently, Frayser and Parrott had a conflict of personalities. Frayser felt that Parrott was trying to take credit and control of the work she had been doing for Winthrop. In a letter to Long, Frayser wrote of trying to assess the situation and to take hold of some vital work not covered by Parrott's field. The people throughout the state were responsive to the work, but without either money or the backing of other extension workers, it was an impossible task. Several times Frayser hesitated to secure an extension agent for a county because it might smack of rivalry between the two women, (between a state and a federal employee). "It has not been an easy road I have traveled."36

Friction and discord between Parrott and herself continued to distress Frayser. She felt she was no longer able to do her work because Parrott was fighting her all the way. In addition, Frayser could not understand why Parrott and the United States government "lacked the bigness to

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recognized the fineness of Winthrop's contributions" to the Home Economics Extension work in South Carolina.37

Frayser sought Dr. Johnson's help in solving the problem with Parrott. She felt that he had managed more difficult problems and could find a solution to this one. Frayser wrote:

I mind the friction, mind being put in the position of acting in questionable taste, of infringing on the territory of others when I am only trying to do the work for which the position I hold was created and so earn my salary. Tell me how to adjust my course, please, as soon as you reach a conclusion. The time for adjustment has surely come.38

The answer came indirectly with a new government program provided by Congress passing the Smith-Lever Act on 8 May 1914. The act funded an elaborate system of agricultural and home economic field work. It also insured an element of federal control of local activities and was the first time federal standards were a factor in aid to education.39 This act provided funding for Frayser's work with the mills throughout the state. Since there were now funds available, Dr. Johnson suggested a split between mill work and rural

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work: Parrott was to take care of the rural section and Frayser to concentrate on mill communities. This met with Frayser's hearty approval. The mill village work was a continuation of what she had been doing previously, only now she could devote her full efforts exclusively in one arena.

Jacquelyn Hall, in Like a Family, defines conditions in mill communities. The industrial management was very paternalistic to its employees. Owners and managers provided the employees' housing, company stores (which sold almost everything needed, from food to nails), churches, and schools. Frequently both the ministers and teachers were on the company payroll and their sermons and lectures reflected managerial policies. School time was always secondary to the needs of the mills; managers frequently sent messengers to the schools to get laborers whenever a need arose. Management dominated the mill village life in every way; in personal habits, in the political arena, and even the religious life of the mill workers.

Between 1878 and 1910, mill housing was relatively primitive. Typical homes had four rooms and a hall and the mill owners expected occupants to provide at least one mill worker for each room. There was no indoor plumbing and sanitary facilities consisted of a row of outhouses. Sometimes

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there was a community well or pumps on the street to provide water. Heat was from open fireplaces and light from kerosene lamps. These conditions slowly began to change after 1910. Mills converted to electricity and began to wire the operative's homes. Some mill owners installed indoor plumbing, although they connected few homes to sewage systems. Most waste went into vaults which had to be cleaned frequently and the contents hauled away by vehicles known as "honey wagons." During hot weather the privies and vaults caused a terrible stench that seeped through the neighborhoods and attracted swarms of flies that invaded workers' homes, spreading disease.

Schools in the mill villages were also inferior to city schools. Either mill owners built the schools and ran them or got themselves appointed to school boards to regulate the teachers, curriculum, and the length of time students spent in classes. Most of the schools controlled by the mills only went through the seventh grade and there was little opportunity for higher education. Mill children were hard pressed to acquire the necessary education to pull themselves out of the factory environment. Company housing, schools, and stores gave manufacturers access to every able-bodied family member and helped create a self-perpetuating labor force.

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Company stores kept workers' wages flowing back into the manufacturers' coffers and their debts kept workers from moving to better paying jobs. After 1910, employee complaints caused many mill owners to close their stores. They finally realized debts and eviction threats were a heavy-handed way to keep the work force stable.40

Extension agents, such as Frayser, worked tirelessly to convince mill owners that "welfare work" was a more benevolent method of securing the mill hands' cooperation and providing the mills with a dependable work force. Indeed, obtaining the support and cooperation of the mill owners was one of Frayser's greatest challenges. In the summer of 1915, Mr. John Law, President of Saxon Mills in Williamston, South Carolina, agreed to contribute 500 dollars toward the salary of a social worker for the mills and to furnish her quarters.

Mr. Law is keenly interested. He kept me four hours Saturday afternoon. I believe Winthrop is about to extend a phase of its extension work which will deepen its usefulness to South Carolina.41

Frayser felt it was Dr. Johnson's wish that she take

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steps immediately toward getting other mill presidents to put workers into their villages. In a letter to Dr. Johnson on the matter she wrote,

I have the honor to report that what we have undertaken is succeeding beyond my fondest hopes. We are receiving requests for help from the mills around the state. We are being asked for help in planning kitchens and in planning lunches....There are at least a dozen communities waiting right now for material which simply needs to be copied and sent out.42

In another letter, Frayser wrote:

Mr. Walter Beattie, President of Piedmont Mills, and Mr. B. E. Greer, President of Judson Mill [will] inaugurate work through us in their mill communities as soon after the New Year as arrangements can be made. I know you will rejoice with me. It means good to nearly 300 people.43

Frayser continued in her task of getting the cooperation of the mill presidents, but even she could sometimes lose heart when some of them became obstinate. It was not always an easy job. "For once I believe I have lost courage." She continued,

The habit of a mill president's life is against anything but absolute authority and against receiving suggestions and help however tactfully offered. He

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doesn't realize he is difficult.44

Once Frayser had brought her considerable persuasive talents to bear, the gentlemen came to understand the advantage to themselves and their employees and their cooperation was complete. Despite the fact that mill owners built community centers, landscaped the factory grounds, and organized a variety of recreational and educational activities, obtaining their cooperation was not always an easy task to accomplish. Frayser added a short report of the progress of the work at the end of the letter. "We have eleven workers in thirteen mills now. We have contracted for three more in the near future."45

Mr. Alexander Long, President of Aragon, Arcade, and Victoria Mills, requested that Winthrop continue the work they had started. In August 1916, Frayser wrote to Dr. Johnson,

I have worked hard in the Rock Hill communities and am anxious to keep a hold on these communities for Winthrop. I am reliably informed that community work will go forward in the above villages---with us if we will---without us if we will not.46

In addition to monetary support, mill presidents

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furnished buildings for the community centers and areas to be used for playgrounds. Usually the company set aside a mill cottage to be remodeled. They removed a partition from one side and a large room was formed and supplied with tables, chairs, window seats, and various board games. Boy Scouts and Camp Fire Girls also used the room for meetings. Groups used the front room on the other side as a reading room. The company supplied some of the books and mill families contributed others. The hub of the building was the back room for it contained a well-equipped kitchen including a fireless cooker, iceless refrigerator, a zinc-covered table, and various small kitchen gadgets.47 This was the smallest unit. Some of the buildings had a bedroom, a manual training room and another for a dispensary and dental work. Four of the buildings had shower baths and two had swimming pools.48

If there was no night school, the local extension agent cooperated with school authorities to open one and teach in it two nights a week for six months of the year. If one already existed, the agent helped increase the roll.49

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Frayser considered many of the mill presidents good social workers once they had been shown the advantages of the work. They were ready to invest in community work because they saw the philanthropy as both a solid investment and sound business sense. The work undertaken helped to make the mill village a good place in which to live and therefore helped mill management secure and retain efficient high class operatives.50

In order to furnish the mill communities with extension agents, Frayser planned and directed in-service training classes for the community agents under her leadership. Winthrop offered two week long sessions, in February and March, known as "Short Courses." Courses in home economics, methods for teaching adult reading, writing, and arithmetic, recreation leadership, and techniques for stimulating community effort were offered.51 In addition, guest speakers were engaged to talk on various topics pertaining to Home Economics. For the second short course session, 19 February-3 March 1917, Mary Frayser secured Florence Kelley, General Secretary of the National Consumer League, as the keynote

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speaker. She spoke on "The Industrial Conditions of Women and Children" and "A Survey of Factory Conditions."52

In the long history of the struggle against child labor in America, the person who made the most consistent and effective contribution was Florence Kelley. Starting with the premise that children belong in schools, not in factories, mills, and mines, she gave most of her life to an unremitting struggle for legislation prohibiting the employment of children under sixteen and for compulsory education until that age was attained.53 Kelley's lectures at Winthrop were an expression of her desire to spread the word for education to the women who would be the instructors in the mill villages of South Carolina. Since Frayser had the unique quality of being able to get along with almost everyone, there is no mystery concerning her involvement with both Kelley and the mill owners. It was her charming manner of influencing others which won over the mill owners. She persuaded them that ultimately, what was right for the children would be most profitable for themselves.

Although war had been raging in Europe since 1914, it

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had little effect on the work Frayser and Winthrop College was accomplishing. This however, changed radically when the United States entered World War I in April 1917. The appropriation from the Agriculture Department was in jeopardy as interest centered on the war effort. Frayser realized her worst fears when federal funding was cut off.

Dr. Johnson informed Frayser that Washington had decided against funding any and all special mill village projects, although the Smith-Lever Bill would continue supporting regular extension work. "I regret this action but the decision of the department controls in this matter. The decision terminates our special mill village work on 1 July." Johnson continued, "You have done a fine piece of work for the mill communities which I am sure will be lasting and will lead in some way to still better things in the future."54

Frayser's work, funded under the Smith-Lever Act, was exclusively with mill communities throughout the state. It was no longer connected with rural extension work after the March 1915 division of work with Parrott. The loss of federal funds was not only devastating to Frayser but to the mill owners who realized what the removal of both the funds and

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Frayser would mean to work in their communities.

Mr. Emslie Nicholson, President of Excelsior Knitting Mills, Union, South Carolina, expressed the feelings of many mill presidents in a letter to Dr. Johnson.

It is with sincere regret that I heard that Miss Mary Frayser's connection with the mill community work would cease after July 1st. I really think it is a catastrophe because she has organized the work and taken such an interest in it and her services and personality will certainly be missed.55

The mill presidents were so interested in keeping Frayser in South Carolina that they proposed to contribute to her upkeep in the field. In a letter to Dr. Bradford Knapp, United States Department of Agriculture, Dr. Johnson wrote that the presidents were "loathe to give her up." Frayser consulted with Johnson, but the fact that such a position might bring her into conflict with the regular extension work carried on under the Smith-Lever Bill, made her decide not to accept it.56

Though Frayser left mill work in 1917, she had accomplished much in her five years of service to South Carolina and it was due in large measure to her enthusiasm and

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her persuasive abilities that the mill owners came to a full acceptance of the work. There were trained workers in twenty cotton mill villages and thirteen other mill presidents were asking for help in organizing community centers in their villages.57

Mary Frayser spent five years in South Carolina. Her deep concern for the welfare of children led her to instigate numerous social changes. The baby health work she undertook in conjunction with medical personnel was pioneer work. The classes and lectures given throughout the state on homemaking, sanitation, and hygiene enhanced the health of the rural population. The Home Extension work, secured by Dr. Johnson but carried on by Frayser, led the government to enlarge its work in the mill communities. However, her work through Winthrop could not have been as successful as it was without the help of club women throughout the state. To educate and enlighten was a lifetime commitment of Frayser's and five years in South Carolina only strengthened her decision to continue to enhance the lives of those with whom she came into contact.

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11M. L. Duggan, March 1912: C. H. S. Jackson, 1 May 1912. Frayser Papers.

2James E. Russell to D. B. Johnson, 19 July 1912. Winthrop Employee Records, Special Collections, Ida Jane Dacus Library, Winthrop University, Rock Hill, South Carolina. Hereafter cited as Employee Records.

3Mary E. Frayser to D. B. Johnson, 11 July 1912. Employee Records.

4Ruth Hoeflin, Careers in Home Economics (Toronto, Ontario: Collier-Macmillan Canada, Ltd., 1970), 115-16.

5James L. Morrill, The Ongoing State University (Minneapolis: The University of Minnesota Press, 1960), 3; Allan Nevins, The Origins of Land-Grant Colleges and State Universities (Washington, D. C.: The Civil War Centennial Commission, 1962).

6Ibid., 6.

7Wiebe, The Search, 126-27.

8Ibid., 8.

9Undated Outline. Frayser Papers.

10D. B. Johnson to Mary E. Frayser, 8 August 1912. Employee Records.

11Columbia (SC) The State, Newspaper Clipping, 16 August 1959. Frayser Papers.

12The South Carolina Woman, 8.

13Mary E. Frayser, "Baby Health is South Carolina's Wealth," Newspaper Clipping, 2 March 1916. Frayser Papers.

14Josephine Goldmark, Impatient Crusader (Urbana, Illinois: University of Illinois Press, 1953), 101.

15Ibid., 102-03.

16Untitled Newspaper clipping, 2 March 1916. Frayser Papers.


18Grace B. Freeman, "Miss Mary Frayser Still Influencing People," Columbia (SC) The State, 16 August 1959.


20Stackhouse, Frayser, 26.

21Ellen C. Lombard to Mary E. Frayser, 11 June 1914. Employee Records.

22Dr. Lorna L. Meanes to Mary E. Frayser, 10 April 1915. Employee Records.

23Frayser later changed the name to Homekeeper's Club as the Anglo-Saxon derivation of woman is "Homekeeper". Mary E. Frayser to D. B. Johnson, 19 September 1913. Frayser Papers.

24Mary E. Frayser, Homekeeper's Bulletin, no. 1, 3-4.

25Stella Mather to Mary E. Frayser, 25 August 1915. Frayser Papers.

26Stackhouse, Frayser, 20.

27Mary E. Frayser to D. B. Johnson, 25 July 1913. Employee Records.

28Report by Mary E. Frayser to D. B. Johnson, 30 April 1913, 1. Employee Records.


30Ibid., 2.


32The South Carolina Woman, 4; Stackhouse, Frayser, 21-22.

33Stackhouse, Frayser, 22.

34Mary E. Frayser to W. W. Long, 11 November 1914. Frayser Papers.

35Mary E. Frayser to D. B. Johnson, 18 November 1914. Employee Records.

36Mary E. Frayser to W. W. Long, 11 November 1914. Employee Records.

37Mary E. Frayser to D. B. Johnson, 29 January 1915. Employee Records.

38Mary E. Frayser to D. B. Johnson, 14 March 1915. Employee Records.

39Morrill, The Ongoing State, 6.

40Jacquelyn Dowd Hall, James Lebodis et al., Like A Family (Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 1987), 114-35. Lois MacDonald, Southern Mill Hills (New York: Alex L. Hillman, 1928), 24-33.

41Mary E. Frayser to D. B. Johnson, 28 July 1915. Employee Records.

42Mary E. Frayser to D. B. Johnson, 1 December 1915. Employee Records.

43Mary E. Frayser to D. B. Johnson, 23 December 1915. Employee Records.

44Mary E. Frayser to D. B. Johnson, 7 June 1916. Employee Records.


46Mary E. Frayser to D. B. Johnson, August 1916. Employee Records.

47Mary E. Frayser. "Village Welfare Work, Important Movement," Rock Hill (SC) The Record, 23 November 1916.

48Report by Mary E. Frayser, 1 May 1916-1 May 1917, 1. Frayser Papers.


50Ibid., see also Rock Hill (SC) The Record. Newspaper Clipping. Frayser Papers.

51Stackhouse, Frayser, 28.

52Program plan for the Second Short Course, 19 February-3 March 1917. Employee Records.

53Dorothy Rose Blumberg, Florence Kelley: The Making of a Social Pioneer (New York: Augustus M. Kelley, 1966), xi.

54D. B. Johnson to Mary E. Frayser, 17 May 1917. Employee Records.

55Emslie Nicholson to D. B. Johnson, 18 June 1917. Employee Records.

56D. B. Johnson to Dr. Bradford Knapp, 26 June 1917. Employee Records.

57Frayser, Undated biographical material, 2. Frayser Papers.