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The Harvey Girls: Women Who Opened the West

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The award-winning history of the women who went West to work in Fred Harvey's restaurants along the Santa Fe railway -- and went on to shape the American Southwest From the 1880s to the 1950s, the Harvey Girls went west to work in Fred Harvey's restaurants along the Santa Fe railway. At a time when there were "no ladies west of Dodge City and no women west of Albuquerque," The award-winning history of the women who went West to work in Fred Harvey's restaurants along the Santa Fe railway -- and went on to shape the American Southwest From the 1880s to the 1950s, the Harvey Girls went west to work in Fred Harvey's restaurants along the Santa Fe railway. At a time when there were "no ladies west of Dodge City and no women west of Albuquerque," they came as waitresses, but many stayed and settled, founding the struggling cattle and mining towns that dotted the region. Interviews, historical research, and photographs help re-create the Harvey Girl experience. The accounts are personal, but laced with the history the women lived: the dust bowl, the depression, and anecdotes about some of the many famous people who ate at the restaurants--Teddy Roosevelt, Shirley Temple, Bob Hope, to name a few. The Harvey Girls was awarded the winner of the 1991 New Mexico Press Women's ZIA award.


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The award-winning history of the women who went West to work in Fred Harvey's restaurants along the Santa Fe railway -- and went on to shape the American Southwest From the 1880s to the 1950s, the Harvey Girls went west to work in Fred Harvey's restaurants along the Santa Fe railway. At a time when there were "no ladies west of Dodge City and no women west of Albuquerque," The award-winning history of the women who went West to work in Fred Harvey's restaurants along the Santa Fe railway -- and went on to shape the American Southwest From the 1880s to the 1950s, the Harvey Girls went west to work in Fred Harvey's restaurants along the Santa Fe railway. At a time when there were "no ladies west of Dodge City and no women west of Albuquerque," they came as waitresses, but many stayed and settled, founding the struggling cattle and mining towns that dotted the region. Interviews, historical research, and photographs help re-create the Harvey Girl experience. The accounts are personal, but laced with the history the women lived: the dust bowl, the depression, and anecdotes about some of the many famous people who ate at the restaurants--Teddy Roosevelt, Shirley Temple, Bob Hope, to name a few. The Harvey Girls was awarded the winner of the 1991 New Mexico Press Women's ZIA award.

30 review for The Harvey Girls: Women Who Opened the West

  1. 5 out of 5

    Rosalind

    Very good account of the Harvey Girls with personal narratives of those who worked as such. Interesting stories. Good explanation of the Santa Fe Railway and The Fred Harvey relationship. Pretty big enterprises at the turn of the 19th century and went down hill during WW II for getting the contract to feed the troop trains. With expanded auto travel in the 1950s, Harvey never could bounce back. Interesting stuff for people in the Southwest. At one point she says over 100,000 women worked as Harv Very good account of the Harvey Girls with personal narratives of those who worked as such. Interesting stories. Good explanation of the Santa Fe Railway and The Fred Harvey relationship. Pretty big enterprises at the turn of the 19th century and went down hill during WW II for getting the contract to feed the troop trains. With expanded auto travel in the 1950s, Harvey never could bounce back. Interesting stuff for people in the Southwest. At one point she says over 100,000 women worked as Harvey Girls from 1882 to 1970 or so. Before 1920, they were often the only white women in the region.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Deborah

    FINALLY! Stories about the women who were elemental during the development of this nation. The book contains a significant history of the Fred Harvey start-up and the railroad partnership. It does add substance to the topic in the title but the title should have been "Fred Harvey and the Harvey Girls". It is too bad that we don't have Fred Harvey standards in the existing establishments (i.e. the Painted Desert in Arizona) that carry his name. The service and food is just as mediocre and unappetizi FINALLY! Stories about the women who were elemental during the development of this nation. The book contains a significant history of the Fred Harvey start-up and the railroad partnership. It does add substance to the topic in the title but the title should have been "Fred Harvey and the Harvey Girls". It is too bad that we don't have Fred Harvey standards in the existing establishments (i.e. the Painted Desert in Arizona) that carry his name. The service and food is just as mediocre and unappetizing as the chain businesses.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Bader Reynolds

    Pioneer ! Excellent story of civilizing the west through opportunity for young women-I loved the menu samples and timeline for the restaurants and hotels.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Christopher Borum

    This is an excellent history of an important yet little-known element of opening of the American West. It starts with a broad history of the Santa Fe Trail and the early incursions of Europeans into the deep Southwest. Then the author covers the development of the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe line that followed roughly the old Trail route. Next the author introduces Fred Harvey and his grand plans to provide food service along the railroad and the expansion of Harvey House restaurants and the This is an excellent history of an important yet little-known element of opening of the American West. It starts with a broad history of the Santa Fe Trail and the early incursions of Europeans into the deep Southwest. Then the author covers the development of the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe line that followed roughly the old Trail route. Next the author introduces Fred Harvey and his grand plans to provide food service along the railroad and the expansion of Harvey House restaurants and the Harvey system, including the Harvey Girls who served as waitresses. There are very few business records from the early Harvey House activities, and almost nothing from its founding in 1876. The author relies on personal recollections culled from newspaper articles and magazine stories with interviews of women who worked as Harvey Girls for the rest of the narrative. These reveal the experiences of the women who took on this role. These young women came from all over the Midwest, some looking simply for a job, others for adventure. Some stayed only a short time and returned home, some stayed 40 years or more. Many married railroadmen who worked the Santa Fe line and went off to raise families in the new American territories and states. The author is sympathetic to her subject, painting the Harvey Girls as integral to making the West accessible and establishing settlements throughout the area. There is an argument that Euro-Americans shouldn't have been there at all, and wouldn't necessarily disagree, but we were, and the Harvey Houses and Harvey Girls were an important part of that story. Fred Harvey was particularly sensitive to the indigenous populations and did a lot to preserve and protect traditional crafts and activities. He amassed a huge collection of artifacts that eventually went to the Heard Museum in Phoenix, along with many other Harvey memorabilia. His chief architect, Mary Colter, often included Native motifs in her designs for Harvey Hotels. The book closes with the decline of the Harvey Houses in the middle of the 20th century, a combination of factors including changes in technology, the rise of auto and air travel, and the Second World War. During the war, Harvey Houses and the Harvey Girls served millions of meals to soldiers heading off to serve. They were a critical part of the home front, but when the war ended, the Harvey House system was a relic of the past. Many of the buildings were destroyed or repurposed. Only a few, such as the El Tovar at Grand Canyon Village, continue in their original capacity. I knew a little about the Harvey Girls before, but these interviews snippets and descriptions of their experience brought them to life and placed them in the their historic context.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Judy

    All the time when I was reading this book, the question kept occurring to me "Did this book really need to be written?" When I finished it, I answered my own question "Yeah, sorta." The Paul Harvey restaurants, operated in conjunction with the Santa Fe railroad in the American west, did bring many women westward to work in the restaurants as Harvey Girls. Many of them married railroaders or ranchers and stayed in the west, bringing the numbers of women up during this frontier stage. Okay, a civi All the time when I was reading this book, the question kept occurring to me "Did this book really need to be written?" When I finished it, I answered my own question "Yeah, sorta." The Paul Harvey restaurants, operated in conjunction with the Santa Fe railroad in the American west, did bring many women westward to work in the restaurants as Harvey Girls. Many of them married railroaders or ranchers and stayed in the west, bringing the numbers of women up during this frontier stage. Okay, a civilizing influence. But oh, what a slog! Endless quotations from interchangeable Harvey Girls who worked at many of the restaurants from the turn of the 20th century (because earlier Harvey Girls were dead by the time this book was written) to the end of World War Two. I get it -- they worked very hard, and the Harvey House standards were impeccable, bringing civilized demeanor to this otherwise rough-and-tumble part of the country. But did the author really need to say that over and over and over and over and over again? Plus the book is riddled with contradictions. In one paragraph the author will say that the Harvey Girls were midwestern farm girls with a need to earn money for themselves, and in the very next paragraph she'll say that many of them were middle class and didn't really need the jobs, they just had a thirst for adventure. I"m sure it was both, so why write in absolutes? This was a Book Group selection; otherwise it's not a book I would have chosen.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Katherine

    Although repetitive in many places this was an interesting history intertwining history of the Santa Fe Trail and the railroad that followed it into the West. Along its tracks, Fred Harvey established lunchrooms, dining rooms and Harvey Houses in which he employed many on the staffs. The most visible of these employees were the young women who waited the tables or tended the lunchroom counters. Unfortunately, the history of the earliest of these women is lost to time but many of those who served Although repetitive in many places this was an interesting history intertwining history of the Santa Fe Trail and the railroad that followed it into the West. Along its tracks, Fred Harvey established lunchrooms, dining rooms and Harvey Houses in which he employed many on the staffs. The most visible of these employees were the young women who waited the tables or tended the lunchroom counters. Unfortunately, the history of the earliest of these women is lost to time but many of those who served between the 20's and WW II were available to tell of their experiences. The vintage photos are poignant since most of the elegant rooms depicted are no longer in existence. Having served the traveling public before the advent of the personal automobile and airlines they became obsolete and so were,for the most part, razed. With the death of the railroad came the death of many of the towns as well. I've been through many of them, have stayed in a few such as Gallup, Winslow, Williams, Raton, Las Vegas and Holbrook. I've sat on the lovely porch of El Tovar and walked its lobby. I can only imagine what the Harvey Houses in these other towns must have been like. Vaughn,NM is a street of deserted Rte 66 motels and yet once it had a Harvey House with a dining room filled with elegant wooden tables and chairs covered with linen and silver and crystal and china all illuminated with beautiful chandeliers and sun through windows of small glass panes. Today there is not even the footprint of where that building stood. Sometimes, though, the freight trains pass through and blow their whistles--if you close your eyes and listen you can almost hear the voices of the ghostly passengers stepping off to have a meal before moving on West.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Charlene Intriago

    I had not heard of the "Harvey Girls" until my neighbor loaned me this book. Interesting account of how the train systems developed from Missouri to California. Even more interesting how an English immigrant named Fred Harvey realized all those people traveling by train would be stopping at train depots and would need a place to get a good meal. He had high standards. He built restaurants and hotels, hired mostly young women as waitresses, and this book tells their story. A good book with a smal I had not heard of the "Harvey Girls" until my neighbor loaned me this book. Interesting account of how the train systems developed from Missouri to California. Even more interesting how an English immigrant named Fred Harvey realized all those people traveling by train would be stopping at train depots and would need a place to get a good meal. He had high standards. He built restaurants and hotels, hired mostly young women as waitresses, and this book tells their story. A good book with a small slice of American history - the role railroads played from the late 1800s to about 1960, how small towns and cities sprang up along the rail lines, the opportunity the Harvey Houses gave young women to find jobs and strike out on their own, how the women lived and worked, the demise of the rail system with the building of roads, automobiles, and the advent of air travel.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Scott

    This was a good book, please do not let the fact that I didn't finish it stop you from reading it. Once it got into the personal stories of the Harvey Girls, the stories became similar and alike. Fred Harvey ran a chain of hotels and restaurants along the Santa Fe Railroad when the West was being settled. The women who worked at those restaurants were called Harvey Girls. The book gave a good history of the women who moved west to work at these places. This was a good book, please do not let the fact that I didn't finish it stop you from reading it. Once it got into the personal stories of the Harvey Girls, the stories became similar and alike. Fred Harvey ran a chain of hotels and restaurants along the Santa Fe Railroad when the West was being settled. The women who worked at those restaurants were called Harvey Girls. The book gave a good history of the women who moved west to work at these places.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Gramarye

    Agreeing with several of the other reviews that the writing style is somewhat repetitive, but nonetheless an interesting book about a less-remembered aspect of American railroad history. I almost feel that the book might have been better served with more minutiae about the Harvey service and the style of the period -- its narrow focus on the women who served as Harvey Girls, while admirable, left me wanting a good deal more of this intriguing historical narrative.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Jewels

    This was a great read! I have been trying to read more non-fiction lately. With that in mind, I learned alot from this book. It was very interesting to read about the advent of the railroad and the adventerous women that went west with it. It was enjoyable to read about the southwest and the original Harvey Houses we have in Northern Arizona.

  11. 5 out of 5

    John E

    The story of an interesting experiment in the history of the American Southwest. I loved the story of adventuresome, mobile, young women and their dedication and life on their own in a society that was not ready for women to undertake what they did. Somewhat repetitious, but moving.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jon McDonald

    Very interesting as I live in Santa Fe and it sheds light on the history of Santa Fe. Very sad to read about the destruction of some the the great grand hotels torn down later.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Michaila

    It didn't take me too long to abandon my original plan of only reading excerpts with this one. The author kept narration interesting and upbeat enough that it captured my curiosity, deciding to read the whole book. I was not disappointed. I found myself so encouraged by these women, the Harvey Girls. They were not all grown women, some were only fourteen years old when they left family and friends to go into the new, strange West. And what inspired me was their bravery, seemingly coming from nowh It didn't take me too long to abandon my original plan of only reading excerpts with this one. The author kept narration interesting and upbeat enough that it captured my curiosity, deciding to read the whole book. I was not disappointed. I found myself so encouraged by these women, the Harvey Girls. They were not all grown women, some were only fourteen years old when they left family and friends to go into the new, strange West. And what inspired me was their bravery, seemingly coming from nowhere - many had never left Kansas farms - to work in a position most adults felt was not right, or safe. But the risks brought rewards of independence, freedom, travel, and the mutual support of their peers. A large number of women could not dream of traveling West alone, supporting themselves while keeping respect and health, and marrying past thirty, yet Harvey girls accomplished all this while earning women a new reputation in a new world. This was also extremely educational. Anyone who's looking for a non-fiction, historical read in the categories of brave women, coming of age, opening the American West, and early railroads should try the Harvey Girls: Women Who Opened the West.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Maura

    Very informative book. Fred Harvey got tired of suffering from bad food or no food available when traveling on trains in the American west. Trains may have opened the American west to white settlement, but travelers had to be almost as hardy as those who had once traveled by horse and wagon. There was no food service on trains, barely any stations along the route, and trains were often delayed for long periods, essentially stranding passengers in the middle of nowhere. Harvey solved the problem Very informative book. Fred Harvey got tired of suffering from bad food or no food available when traveling on trains in the American west. Trains may have opened the American west to white settlement, but travelers had to be almost as hardy as those who had once traveled by horse and wagon. There was no food service on trains, barely any stations along the route, and trains were often delayed for long periods, essentially stranding passengers in the middle of nowhere. Harvey solved the problem by opening a chain of lunch counters and restaurants along the railroads, designed to serve passengers a good quality hot meal in the 20 minutes or so that the train was stopped. The women who worked as waitresses were known as Harvey girls, and this book tells their stories in excerpts from interviews and letters. It's also the story of Harvey himself, who preferred to lose money operating his houses rather than cut quality. Still, he worked a deal with the Sante Fe RR that made the whole system work very well. Fascinating slice of history.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Kathleen McRae

    This was a story I knew nothing about and found it fascinating from more than one perspective. It is women's history and was presented in this book as being a superior alternative for women at the time ,mainly because of the restrictions that were imposed on females of that era.This book did not shy away from pointing out the discrimination women faced the restrictions on dress, deportment and employment.It is also a good description of the opening up of the west and the hard times faced by peop This was a story I knew nothing about and found it fascinating from more than one perspective. It is women's history and was presented in this book as being a superior alternative for women at the time ,mainly because of the restrictions that were imposed on females of that era.This book did not shy away from pointing out the discrimination women faced the restrictions on dress, deportment and employment.It is also a good description of the opening up of the west and the hard times faced by people. It also points out the discrimination faced by people who were not white and that includes men and women. I also found it interesting that many of these girls were emancipated as to what they were capable of and if their lives had been written about as extensively as men's were it would be interesting to find out what effect it had on their lives.Unfortunately women were frequently disappeared as a person once their role as a Harvey girl had ended.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Lyle Radke

    Anyone interested in the history of the American southwest will appreciate this book. That said, it has an unusual flow. Some parts, particularly the beginning and the end, summarize many years of history from the perspective of the railroad. I found that to be very easy to follow. The middle chapters are less chronological, more thematic or geographical, and hop around a lot from time to time and place to place. If you like raw history, the book contains a lot of quotes from oral interviews wit Anyone interested in the history of the American southwest will appreciate this book. That said, it has an unusual flow. Some parts, particularly the beginning and the end, summarize many years of history from the perspective of the railroad. I found that to be very easy to follow. The middle chapters are less chronological, more thematic or geographical, and hop around a lot from time to time and place to place. If you like raw history, the book contains a lot of quotes from oral interviews with former Harvey Girls and their associates. One disappointment is that the book often refers to the Harvey system, but never really spells out exactly what that consisted of. Overall, though, I learned a lot and really enjoyed this book.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Marieta Grissom

    Fascinating! The history of the Sante Fe railroad and how a visionary by the name of Fred Harvey created a unique arrangement for feeding and lodging passengers travelling on the railroad. This is the story of the girls, coming from a multitude of backgrounds, who worked for the Fred Harvey Company, their special status, and the familial bonds that were formed. It is also the story of changing times, as modes of travel advanced, and the passenger train lost appeal to the masses, being replaced b Fascinating! The history of the Sante Fe railroad and how a visionary by the name of Fred Harvey created a unique arrangement for feeding and lodging passengers travelling on the railroad. This is the story of the girls, coming from a multitude of backgrounds, who worked for the Fred Harvey Company, their special status, and the familial bonds that were formed. It is also the story of changing times, as modes of travel advanced, and the passenger train lost appeal to the masses, being replaced by the automobile and airplanes. Somewhere in my subconscious I had stored the name of Fred Harvey and when I saw this book in a National Park bookstore, bells rang and I knew I must buy and read this book.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Nicole

    As the title suggests, this book is about the Harvey Girls, almost to a fault. So many of their stories are similar that they ran together in my head and I had a hard time keeping them all straight. Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed this book. The "girls" were true pioneers in every sense of the word. That said, I would have appreciated more biographical info related to Fred Harvey, his sons, and Mary Coulter, as well as more information regarding the ultimate fate of the Harvey Corporation. The boo As the title suggests, this book is about the Harvey Girls, almost to a fault. So many of their stories are similar that they ran together in my head and I had a hard time keeping them all straight. Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed this book. The "girls" were true pioneers in every sense of the word. That said, I would have appreciated more biographical info related to Fred Harvey, his sons, and Mary Coulter, as well as more information regarding the ultimate fate of the Harvey Corporation. The book contains loads of pictures, so suggest reading the book instead of the Kindle version to get the best look at them. Interesting, well researched story.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    The story of Fred Harvey and the Harvey Girls is amazing especially considering it happened during post Civil War. He knew how to make an incredible amount of money and allow his employees to build a life too. He championed women, including his architect, Mary Colter. He did it because it was good business. Ms Poling-Kempes does wonderful job researching her book. Sadly, her delivery is a bit dry and incredibly textbook-like. Read it despite the 'there will be a test' prose. Read it because the s The story of Fred Harvey and the Harvey Girls is amazing especially considering it happened during post Civil War. He knew how to make an incredible amount of money and allow his employees to build a life too. He championed women, including his architect, Mary Colter. He did it because it was good business. Ms Poling-Kempes does wonderful job researching her book. Sadly, her delivery is a bit dry and incredibly textbook-like. Read it despite the 'there will be a test' prose. Read it because the story is good and needs a wider audience.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Christina

    It should be 4.5 stars but I don’t know how to do it. Very enjoyable read and a history that really should be taught along with the old west. I have loved the film The Harvey Girls since I was a kid. I even based my wedding dress on Judy Garland’s in the film. I have a better understanding of how important the Harvey enterprise was in American History. The interviews with actual Harvey Girls and other Harvey workers brought it to life. If you like history, add this to your list. It’s also great It should be 4.5 stars but I don’t know how to do it. Very enjoyable read and a history that really should be taught along with the old west. I have loved the film The Harvey Girls since I was a kid. I even based my wedding dress on Judy Garland’s in the film. I have a better understanding of how important the Harvey enterprise was in American History. The interviews with actual Harvey Girls and other Harvey workers brought it to life. If you like history, add this to your list. It’s also great for female empowerment.

  21. 4 out of 5

    JulieAnn

    I enjoyed the history and stories in this book. It was amazing to read this book written in the 1980s while we are in the midst of the Covid 19 pandemic and learn that for years Houston (the man the city was named after) initiated yellow fever scares in Galveston and forced embargoes between the two cities in 1967. And the railroad was needed for Galveston to survive (see page 26). The interviews of these women showed bravery and resolve. The pictures were wonderful. I enjoyed this journey back I enjoyed the history and stories in this book. It was amazing to read this book written in the 1980s while we are in the midst of the Covid 19 pandemic and learn that for years Houston (the man the city was named after) initiated yellow fever scares in Galveston and forced embargoes between the two cities in 1967. And the railroad was needed for Galveston to survive (see page 26). The interviews of these women showed bravery and resolve. The pictures were wonderful. I enjoyed this journey back in time. A wonderful visit I had.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Leonard

    A well researched book. I enjoyed it a lot as I was very familiar withe the Alvarado in Albuquerque. My family was a Santa Fe family all the way. I also have stayed at the El Tovar and La Posada. Really classy places. The story of how the Harvey Girls worked, trained and served the travelers along the Santa Fe line was well researched. I learned a lot about the beginings of the Santa Fe as well as the Harvey establishment. There were some places that I had never heard of before. A fun read and a A well researched book. I enjoyed it a lot as I was very familiar withe the Alvarado in Albuquerque. My family was a Santa Fe family all the way. I also have stayed at the El Tovar and La Posada. Really classy places. The story of how the Harvey Girls worked, trained and served the travelers along the Santa Fe line was well researched. I learned a lot about the beginings of the Santa Fe as well as the Harvey establishment. There were some places that I had never heard of before. A fun read and a good source of history of the late 19th century and the early 20th century.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Junemarie Brandt

    A very well researched book, focusing on the latter half of the saga of the Fred Harvey Company and the Santa Fe Railroad. The author interviewed surviving Harvey Girls and gives their first person accounts that wipe away some of the fictional fog of life at the Harvey Houses in the 1920-40s. Could have benefited from a little less repetition and a few edits, but is a well written account of the role these young women played in settling the American West.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Genine Franklin-Clark

    A lot of interesting history, less interesting as the book went on (repetitive), but readable to the end. Seemed somewhat paternalistic (it was the times) and patronizing. Rather indifferent to the horrors of Native Americans' loss of land, community, and lives. We see things differently now. Not enough differently, but some. The young women who left their familiar homes for the unknown were rightly celebrated, and the paternalistic attitude seems to have been reassuring to them. A lot of interesting history, less interesting as the book went on (repetitive), but readable to the end. Seemed somewhat paternalistic (it was the times) and patronizing. Rather indifferent to the horrors of Native Americans' loss of land, community, and lives. We see things differently now. Not enough differently, but some. The young women who left their familiar homes for the unknown were rightly celebrated, and the paternalistic attitude seems to have been reassuring to them.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Nancy Nelson

    A little long but a fascinating piece of history. I knew nothing about this era of our American history. Wish I could ask my parents about it their era and my dad grew up in many of the Kansas locations mentioned in the book. My favorite parts were to read personal interviews by the women involved.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Alice Weaver

    I found this book hugely interesting about the railroads and those women who worked long hard hours but were provided a standard of living and work protection and guidance as many were so young. The history about the building of the railroads and the national parks part in spurring interest in the use of railroads was educational.

  27. 5 out of 5

    ChrissieP

    I especially enjoyed reading the first-hand memories and interpretations of Harvey girls and railroad workers. The book is a good vehicle for traveling back in time to an era when the west was sparsely settled.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Nan

    Wonderful read. I wish there were more personal accounts but I understand why there wasn't. now I want to go visit what sites remain. I've been to the Grand Canyon site & the St. Louis site which is a mall now. Wonderful read. I wish there were more personal accounts but I understand why there wasn't. now I want to go visit what sites remain. I've been to the Grand Canyon site & the St. Louis site which is a mall now.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Melissa

    3.5 stars. I enjoyed reading about the Santa Fe railroad, the history and philosophy of Fred Harvey, and the beautiful hotels, but I still wanted more about the actual Harvey Girls. There are lots of great old photos included, which is a huge bonus.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Kbarker

    I really liked this book. I'd heard about the Harvey girls but didn't know much. I didn't know they worked for hotels and restaurants near the railroad. I didn't know they got their start in Kansas, my home state. Alot of facts but a very interesting read!!!!! I really liked this book. I'd heard about the Harvey girls but didn't know much. I didn't know they worked for hotels and restaurants near the railroad. I didn't know they got their start in Kansas, my home state. Alot of facts but a very interesting read!!!!!

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