Document 11: "Lodging House," Annual Report of 1894, unprocessed collection of YWCA of Greater Baltimore, 128 W. Franklin Street, Annual Reports, 1883-1902.
The belief that a woman's values can be changed by changing her environment is clearly reflected in the following report from the Lodging House. Notice the emphasis on "orderly habits" and the desire to make the house feel like a home. Some historians have noted that poor and dirty tended to be synonymous in middle-class reform vocabulary. Thus the emphasis on orderly habits reflects the philosophy that drove many female reform efforts, particularly the City Beautiful movement.
The first year in our house has been successful in this department, as through the increased facilities we have been enabled to furnish 10,434 nights lodging, an increase of more than 3,000 over the preceding year.
We find the influence of the attractive rooms, furnished by friends, many of them memorial rooms, is doing much to train the girls in orderly habits. A sewing room, on the third floor, has added greatly to their comfort, and we are encouraged to feel that the girls regard the Association as a home in its truest sense, a place of love and trust.