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MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Monterey in Monterey County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
 

Working Women

Historic Cannery Row

 
 
Working Women Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, April 23, 2012
1. Working Women Marker
[Photograph credits]
[Top]
Photograph courtesy of Pat Hathaway, California Views

[Middle]
Photograph by George Robinson, courtesy of the Monterey Public Library, California History Room

[Bottom]
Photograph by George Robinson, courtesy of the Monterey Public Library, California History Room.
Inscription. Prior to World War II, only women were allowed to work on cannery lines (top). In some canneries, only “white American women” were allowed to pack fish. Working the lines was considered “women’s work.” Even if there were men available, the canneries would shut down if there weren’t enough women to work the lines.

Women packed oval sardine cans at the California Packing Corporation, a part of Del Monte Foods (middle). They were paid by the piece, or can. In 1939, at the peak of the industry, a worker made 23 cents for every 16 cans of fish she put up. Some canneries pinned piecework cards to the women’s back to keep track of the number of cans they filled.

The forelady walked the line every hour, checking the progress of “the pack” and marking piecework cards (bottom). These floor managers had to speak enough of the several languages represented in the workforce to resolve any problems that came up. At a season’s height, women worked as many as 12 hours a day, six days a week.
 
Location. 36° 36.953′ N, 121° 54.019′ W. Marker is in Monterey, California, in Monterey County. Marker is at the intersection of Cannery Row and Prescott Avenue on Cannery Row. Click for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 665 Cannery Row, Monterey CA 93940, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers.
Working Women Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, April 23, 2012
2. Working Women Marker
At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Cannery Row Monument (within shouting distance of this marker); Grand Procrastination (within shouting distance of this marker); Building Cannery Row (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); McAbee Beach (about 300 feet away); Silver Harvest (about 400 feet away); Fish Hoppers (about 400 feet away); The Del Mar Canning Company, 1927-1947 (about 400 feet away); Giant Kelp Beyond the Breakers (about 400 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Monterey.
 
Categories. Industry & Commerce
 
Monterey Canning Company Building image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, April 23, 2012
3. Monterey Canning Company Building
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 308 times since then and 6 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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