Seattle raises pay for city workers on February 1, 1900.

  • By David Wilma
  • Posted 10/08/1999
  • HistoryLink.org Essay 1726
On February 1, 1900, the Seattle City Council approves and the mayor signs into law pay raises for 235 employees of the City Government, the first raise since 1898. Most employees receive an average of $5 more a month and the Police Chief receives a $25 a month raise. The City's expenditures increase by $1,833 a month or $21,996 a year.

The monthly salaries were set at:

  • Council Clerk and Deputy Comptroller $95
  • Clerk $75
  • Stenographer $70

Law Department

  • City Attorney $115
  • Stenographer $75

Comptroller's Department

  • Accountants and Deputies (3) $100
  • Chief Clerk and Deputy $95
  • License Officer and Deputy $95
  • General Clerk and Deputy $90
  • Stenographers (2) $70

Treasury Department

  • Deputy Treasurer $100
  • Cashier and Deputy $85
  • Cashier of Water Office $80
  • Clerks (2) $80

Judicial Department

  • Clerk of Police Court $80
  • Bailiff $65
  • Sergeant-at-arms $65
  • City hall messenger $65
  • Police Judge $100

Sanitation Department

  • Sanitary Inspector $90
  • Assistant Inspector $80
  • Assistant Sanitary Inspectors (2) $75

Civil Service Department

  • Secretary of Commission $95
  • Clerk and Stenographer $55
  • Clerk $65

Public Works Department

  • Secretary of Board $100
  • Timekeeper and Clerk $80
  • Blacksmith $80
  • Stable Boss $85

City Engineer's Department

  • Field Assistant Engineer $120
  • Office Assistant Engineer $120
  • Cedar River Assistant Engineer $120
  • Head Draftsman $90
  • Assistant Draftsman (4) $85
  • Stenographer $75
  • Foreman of Streets and Sewers $90

Bridges, Buildings, and Wharves Department

  • Janitor City Hall $70
  • Watchman at [illegible] $40

Water Department

  • Auditor and Assessor $95
  • General Foreman $90
  • Domestic Service Subforeman $70
  • Domestic Service Teamster $70
  • Domestic Service Helpers $65
  • Shutoff Man $70
  • Inspectors (2) $65
  • Meter Foreman $70
  • Meter Foreman Helper $60

Lake Washington Pumping Station

  • Chief Engineer $100
  • Assistant Engineers (3) $95
  • Firemen (3) $70
  • Wood Passers (3) $65

Broadway Pumping Station

  • Engineer $90
  • Assistant Engineers (2) $80

Queen Anne Pumping Station

  • Engineer $85

Parks Department

  • Foreman $75
  • First Nurseryman $65
  • Second Nurseryman $60
  • Park Helpers (2) $60
  • Helpers (6) $55

Library Department

  • Librarian $115
  • Assistant Librarian $65
  • Superintendent of Circulation $60
  • First Desk Clerk $50
  • Second Desk Clerk $45
  • Page $30
  • Janitor $60
  • Binder $75
  • Stitcher $37

Fire Department

  • Chief $140
  • Assistant Chief $125
  • Electrician $115
  • Captains (10) $85
  • Lieutenants (13) $80
  • Chief Engineer $100
  • Engineers (7) $90
  • Pilots (2) $90
  • Stokers (2) $75
  • Pipemen (11) $75
  • Pipemen (2) $70
  • Drivers (16) $75
  • Drivers (2) $70
  • Truckmen (4) $75

Police Department

  • Chief $150
  • Captains (2) $100
  • Sergeants (3) $82.50
  • Detectives (6) $80
  • Jailers (2) $75
  • Drivers (2) $75
  • Clerks (2) $75
  • Patrolmen (39) $75
  • Patrolmen (7) $75
  • Herder $75
  • Matron $65
  • ....

Prices

That same week, advertisements appeared in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer as follows:

  • Three room modern residence, electric lights, gas - $3,750
  • Ham 12 cents a pound
  • Eggs 35 cents for two dozen (Leslie-Henry Co., Western Avenue and Marion Street)
  • Business Suits $10 (J. Redelsheimer, First Avenue and Columbia Street)
  • New style Graphophone [sic] $10 (Winter and Harper, 908 Second Avenue)
  • Children's shoes - 50 cents to $1.25 a pair
  • Ladies' shoes - $1.35 a pair
  • Men's shoes - $1.35 to $3.95 a pair (All shoes were advertised by Brown Bros., 722 1st Avenue)

Sources: Seattle Post-Intelligencer, February 2, 1900, p. 7.

Related Topics:   Economics | Government & Politics | Labor

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