During the early 20th century, Mexican American women generally did not work outside the home. For those who did, the occupations open to them were limited: laundress, seamstress, field work such as picking vegetables, or factory work such as with textiles or pecan-shelling.
Working as a store clerk was the top rung of the occupational ladder for Hispanic women prior to World War II. Opportunities for higher education or financial independence were few. Though there were exceptions, Hispanic women did not take up public roles in large numbers until the 1970s.
Prints and Photographs Collection, Texas State Library and Archives Commission. #1977/127-20.