The Best of Everything

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Joan Crawford's Kansas City, Missouri

Where She Worked (1922 - 1923)



Jazz Baby: Billie stopped working at Rockingham Academy at the end of the spring term [1922] and took a job selling notions at Kline's Department Store downtown [Walnut St.]. She was able to buy clothes at a discount and was required to contribute to the rent at her mother's apartment.




The Jones Store       Rothschild       Emery, Bird, Thayer

Jazz Baby:  [after returning from Stephens College in the spring of 1923] She had hated working at Kline's Department Store before she left to go to Stephens College, but it was a place to start...She held the job only a few weeks...She then trained to be a telephone operator---a job she felt was demeaning....Then she tried The Jones Store for a few weeks before trying a men's shop, Rothschild's, again as a package wrapper. Emery, Bird, Thayer...paid her a trifle more than the other employers --- about $15 per week.

Above:  The Jones Store (12th and Main).



Above: Rothschild's (10th and Main) (1) at lower left, (2) at upper right, and (3) ad.


Above:  Emery, Bird, Thayer (11th Street between Walnut and Grand)

Jazz Baby: Jim Miller remembers seeing Billie numerous times waiting under the awnings...of Emery, Bird, Thayer for some date or other to pick her up for dinner or a night on the town. The awning space was so popular as a rendezvous that the kids dubbed it "Emery's Porch."



Below: Map with location of Billie's first KC home (9th and Oak) indicated. Department store locations described above

are all between Main/Walnut/Grand and 10th/11th/12th Streets on map below.



The Best of Everything