Unraveling Workers’ Letters: The Voices behind Nelly Don

Dora Mattox



Dora Mattox


Letter by factory worker distinguishing the Donnelly Garment Company from a sweat shop and expressing her gratitude to her employer, Nell Donnelly Reed




Date Original

October 21, 1937


Kansas City, Missouri

Collection name

James A. Reed Collection, K0443


Box 34


The State Historical Society of Missouri-Kansas City



Access Rights

The Donor hereby gives and assigns to the University all rights of copyright which the Donor has in (a) the Materials and (b) in such of his works as may be found among any collections of Materials received by the University from others.






Kansas City, Mo.
Oct. 21, 1937

Donnelly Garment Co.

I have been an employee of the Donnelly Garment Co. since March 10th, 1930, Seven years and seven months and I am more than satisfied with my work. I not only make more money but the working conditions are nicer and easier than any place I have worked. I have steady employment the entire year and our wages are far above what the other dress shops pay.

Our shop is not a sweat shop. We do not have a speed system which makes nervous wrecks of us. I have a guarantee of $22.50 per week, but our piece work is priced so it is easy to make this and much more. Our working conditions are pleasant. Our workers are congenial and happy and that is proof a plenty that we are well satisfied with our plant and the way it is run, and we do not want or need any outsider to come in our plant and change it.

Mrs. Reed does everything she possibly can to make things easy and pleasant for her help. I have had six paid vacations in seven years.

Mrs. Reed never forgets anyone of us at Christmas time and gives wonderful parties for our children and for this I am truly grateful and hope to remain

An Employee

Dora Mattox
1908 East 38th St.