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The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

JONES, MYRTA L. - The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

JONES, MYRTA L. (ca. 1861-11 June 1954), daughter of James M. and Ermina (Barrows) Jones, was a native Cleveland social reformer dedicated to improving working conditions for women and a long-time member of the CONSUMERS LEAGUE OF OHIO. Jones moved to New York City after attending college and worked at Rivington St. (Social) Settlement. She returned to Cleveland by Jan. 1894 and was a founding member of the FORTNIGHTLY MUSICAL CLUB. In 1901, Jones began a lifelong membership on the executive committee of the Consumers League of Ohio, serving as president from 1908-15 and 1918-20. Under her leadership, the league launched campaigns to improve working conditions for women, including shorter hours for women working in department stores during the Christmas shopping season. She also led the league from a group supporting legislation proposed by others to a more aggressive organization proposing legislation itself. Jones was also vice-president of the Natl. Consumers League in the 1910s and 1920s.

During WORLD WAR I, Jones chaired 2 committees on women in industry, working to recruit women to take men's places in wartime factories while seeking to protect the health and safety of these women. In 1921, Jones came out of semiretirement to direct the Consumers League's unsuccessful campaign for a minimum-wage law in Ohio. Jones also helped organize ALTA HOUSE, was a member of the LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS (LWV) OF CLEVELAND, and was active in the women's suffrage movement. In 1930 Jones married Henry W. Cannon, living in New York City from 1930 until 1952, when she returned to Cleveland. Jones had no children and is buried in LAKE VIEW CEMETERY.

Consumers League of Ohio Papers, WRHS.

Harrison, Dennis Irven. " The Consumers League of Ohio Women and Reform, 1909-1937'' (Ph.D. diss., CWRU, 1975).

Last Modified: 17 Jul 1997 02:41:16 PM

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