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Documents of the Great Depression from Family Collections

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West Dante WPA Sewing Project

Dante, West Virgina


Source: Dante History Project, Courtesy of Mae Dingus Culbertson

The WPA West Dante Sewing Room made clothing for children and adults which was distributed through the Dickenson County Welfare Department. They worked in an old warehouse which was donated by Carter Phillips, a local businessman. This building is now used by the Phillips Chapel Baptist Church.

From left; Sally Marshall Poston, Maggie Keen, Mae Dingus Culbertson (Supervisor), Donna Holbrook Kilgore, Tennessee McCoy Skeens, Mrs. Jessee, unidentified woman, Mrs. Homer Keys, Mrs. Roberts
From left; Sally Marshall Poston, Maggie Keen, Mae Dingus Culbertson (Supervisor), Donna Holbrook Kilgore, Tennessee McCoy Skeens, Mrs. Jessee, unidentified woman, Mrs. Homer Keys, Mrs. Roberts.

One of the women's first projects was to make their uniforms. The building they used had been a church, owned by Carter Phillips, a local businessman and community leader, who "brought the WPA to West Dante."

All of the women lived in West Dante except for Mrs. Roberts and Mrs. Jessee, who lived several miles away. They walked to and from work, taking a short-cut through a two-mile long Clinchfield railroad tunnel.




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