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Retail Trade in N. Y. State in 1939 and 1929

Source: United States Bureau of the Census

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In the following table their current sales are compared with those shown in previous censuses, but 1935 and 1929 figures for cities except New York and Buffalo include data for repair garages, which were classified as retailers in those years, but are now included in the Service Census.

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Principal Kinds

Grocery stores (without fresh meats).
Combination stores (groc -meats).
Dairy products stores, milk

209,425 183,615 5,578,159 6,968,931 567,150 562,797 660,093 773,333 77,358 70.714 1,521,498 1,772,079 100,015 100,578 116,886 134,495


844,953 95,506 103,669 102,192 118.990 656,428 940,074 68,989 76,792 92.680111,158 6,647 7.992 240,505] 468,778 23,832| 33,921 37,506 62,470 4.454 5.902 487,606 704,764 28,717 34,092 42,598 61,108 15,652 8,815 219,269 140.987 16.922 11,025 18,231 13,697 7.308 9,556 238,200 417.684 20.319 31.095 30.083 51,837 32,434 15.571 448,102 137.777 84,903 120,957; 88.345 6.620 6.392 159.637 203.103 16,900 19,356 18,605 26,755 32.374 27,828| 727,695 956,299 57,327 64,112 79,701 101,495




77,358 70.714 1,521.498 1,772,079 100,015 100,578 116,886 134.495
25.314 25.342) 432.088 574,849 21.496 27,076 22,194 31,747
9,910 7,007! 424,127 285,097 27.738 16,266 28,665 21.210
2,380) 140,427 208,670 16,621 15,272 30,825 29.700
11,697 230,885 334,721 13.342 16,033 15,901 23,311
11.432 11,223 85,103 129,649 5.166 11,026 4.027 9.784
132.884 149.182 10.456 10,394 10.208 13,047
644,356) 844,953 95.506 103,669 102,192 118,990
462.019 616,670 67,121 76,847 80,016 97,645
67,485 114,712 6.005 8,250 6.768 9.020
114.852) 113.571 22.380 18,572 15.408 12,325
656.428 940.074 68,989 76,792 92,680 111,158
154,974 252,632 12.201 18.433
110,205 7.781
244,930 24,502
164,227 14,957
168,080 9.548
468,778 23,832
198,345 10,215

Meat markets, fish.

Candy, nut, confectionery

Other food stores.



General Merchandise.



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Employees and payroll include paid executives of corporations, but not the number and compensation of proprietors of unincorporated businesses.

Previously published totals for the State and for the automotive group. for 1935 and 1929, are revised to exclude service garages and other automotive service businesses whose receipts from service sale exceed their sales of merchandise. These are now included in the Census of Service Establishments

588 1,518 1,105 60,601 4,456 4,412 6,126 7,172 11,025 18,231 13,697 170,180 301,643 14,480 23,210 22.730 40.414 127,407 210,525 42.773 91,118 68.020 116,041 59,125 455.707

10.293 13.874 16,749 24,421

4.182 9.336

5,981 15,993

7,353 11,423



203, 103



28,023 26,355

78.247 632,911


5.720 2,295 202,520


1,265 1,355 70,391
1,692 2,637 55.729
5,872 5,220 68,9451
2,291 1,730 24.896
2,302 4,095 20.299



8.510 12.845

Workmen's Compensation in New York State

Source: New York State Department of Labor

The Workmen's Compensation Law of New York requires coverage whenever one or more employees are engaged in any of the listed hazardous employments carried on for pecuniary gain. In addition, the statute requires compensation coverage by any employing organization whether or not the work embraces the listed hazardous employments and regardless of whether carried on for pecuniary gain if four or more workmen or operatives are employed.

It expressly excludes farm laborers and domestic servants, but these may be voluntarily insured.

An amendment of 1929 specifically exempts teachers, ministers, and other non-manual workers for a religious, charitable, or educational corporation.

An amendment of 1931 includes in the coverage of the compensation law private or domestic chauffeurs employed as such in New York City. No penalty is placed, however, upon employers who fail to insure such chauffeurs.

All State employees are entitled to compensation, but only such municipal employees as are included among the listed hazardous occupations. Railroad employees injured in interstate commerce are excluded by the Federal Employers' Liability Act.

Masters and crews of vessels on navigable waters are excluded by the Admiralty jurisdiction of the Federal courts. Longshoremen and other maritime workers if injured on docks are protected by the compensation law, but if injured upon navigable waters, including dry docks, compensation is paid under the Federal "Longshoremen's and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act," approved March 4, 1927. Masters and crews, and workers engaged in unloading or repairing, are excluded from compensation if the vessel on which accident occurs is under eighteen tons net.

An injured employee or others must give written notice of the accident to the employer and the Industrial Commissioner within thirty days unless failure to give such notice is excused by the Board on the ground that notice for sufficient reason could not have been given or that the employer had knowledge of the accident, or on the ground that the employer had not been prejudiced by the omission. A compensation claim must be filed within a year except that for sufficient reason the Industrial Board may extend the time for filing to two years.

The accident must not be due to the injured employee's wilful intent to injure himself or another or solely to his intoxication.

In the case of an accident which occurred prior to July 1, 1935, the employer is required to provide proper and adequate medical attention and the employer may select the physician to render treat


In case of an accident after such date the injured employee may select a physician authorized by the Industrial Commissioner.

Compensation to a disabled employee is 25 of his average weekly wages but not to exceed $25 per week, or less than $8 per week except that if the wages are less than $8 he shall receive his full weekly wage; and the minimum rate in cases of permanent total disability shall not be less than $15 per week unless the claimant's wages were less

| than $15 per week, in which event he shall receive his full weekly wage. In accidents that occurred prior to May 11, 1934, the maximum of $25 per week was limited to cases of total disability either temporary or permanent and the maximum for for accidents prior to this date was $20 a week. partial disability either temporary or permanent

In death cases awards are made to dependents in accordance with a schedule provided therefor. The total amount of benefits must not exceed 23 of the average weekly wage of the deceased based on maximum earnings of $150 a month. In the case of the widows and children of deceased employees wages are not deemed less than $75 a month.

All awards of the Board draw interest from 30 days after making thereof.

Any objections by the carrier that claim was not filed in one year must be raised at the first hearing at which all parties are present.

Compensation (other than death) benefits granted by the law:

Permanent total disability-two-thirds of the average weekly wage for period of disability.

Permanent partial disability-two-thirds of the average weekly wage for periods specified in a schedule arranged by parts of the body, ranging from 15 weeks for loss of little finger to 312 weeks for an arm. In case of protracted temporary total disabilities in connection therewith, the injured is compensated in addition for the length of the temporary total disability in excess of periods stated in a schedule.

Temporary total disability-two-thirds of the average weekly wage for the period of disability, but not to exceed $5,000.

Temporary partial disability-when there is a decrease in earning capacity, the compensation provided is two-thirds of the difference between the injured employee's average weekly wages before the accident and his wage earning capacity thereafter, but shall not exceed a total of $4,000.

The Law allows compensation for any and all occupational diseases if the disability is occasioned after September 1, 1935.

For silicosis or other dust disease, compensation is payable for total disability or death only and is limited to an aggregate total of $5,000.

In case of an accident which occurred prior to May 2, 1936, compensation is not paid for the first seven days of disability unless the disability exceeds 49 days. An amendment effective May 2nd allows compensation for the first week of disability after 35 days of disability.

The first payment of compensation becomes due on the fourteenth day of disability and if the case is not controverted, payment of compensation must begin on or before the 18th day after disability or within eight days after the employer first has knowledge of the accident. A notice of controversy must be filed on or before the 18th day.

Failure to pay an installment of compensation within 18 days after it is due carries with it an additional ten percent penalty which accrues, to the injured workman. Also failure to pay an award by the Board within ten days after notice of the award carries with it a penalty of twenty percent which accrues to the worker.

Minors under 18 years of age who are employed in violation of the Labor Law are entitled to double compensation.

Industrial Accidents in New York State

Source: New York State Department of Labor
Deaths (incl. Accidents)

Nonfatal Compens
Injury Injury,
No.Cases No. Cases

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15,548 56,326



76,216 27,854,726









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471,510 109,848 35,243,703




22,434 86,106


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82,433 27,801,367

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74.487 24,659,587






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69.770 25.405,110



4,175,708 17,523


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460,939 78,870 28,719,803


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79,280 28,065,133







7141 3,996,660 22,720 55,846

1924 through 1930-all figures excepting the number of accidents and deaths are for fiscal year ending June 30, 1931 and since-all figures are for calendar year.

The Minimum Wage Law in New York State

Source: New York State Department of Labor

A minimum wage law was passed by the New | York State Legislature and approved by Governor Lehman (April 27, 1937). Its enactment followed the decision of the United States Supreme Court of March 29, 1937, reversing its stand in the Adkins case and upholding the minimum wage law of the State of Washington.

The act, entitled "Minimum Wage Standards for Women and Minors," states, "It is the declared public policy of the State of New York that women and minors employed in any occupation should receive wages sufficient to provide adequate maintenance and to protect their health."

The law empowers the Industrial Commissioner to investigate wages paid to women and minors in any occupation, except domestic service in the home of the employer or labor on a farm, and, if, on the basis of information in his possession, with or without a special investigation, the Commissioner is of the opinion that a substantial number of women or minors in such occupation receive wages insufficient to provide adequate maintenance and to protect health, to appoint a wage board which shall recommend minimum wage rates for women and minors in such occupations.

The wage board is composed of not more than 3 representatives of employers, an equal number of representatives of employees and not more than 3 disinterested members representing the public. Within 60 days it shall submit a report recommending minimum wage standards for women and minors in the occupation or occupations under consideration. In setting minimum wage standards the board may take into account (1) the amount

sufficient to provide adequate maintenance and to protect health, (2) the value of the service or class of service rendered, and (3) wages paid in the state for like or comparable work.

After public hearing on the report of the wage board the Industrial Commissioner may, if he is not satisfied, refer the matter to the same wage board or a new one, or he may approve the report and issue a directory wage order and administrative regulations. If the Commissioner has reason to believe that any employer is not observing the provisions of such order, he may, after a hearing. cause the name of such employer to be published. If at any time after a directory wage order has been in effect for three months, non-observance of such order threatens the maintenance of the minimum wage standards, the Industrial Commissioner may, after public hearing, make such order mandatory. Violation of a mandatory wage order is a misdemeanor. Any employee who is paid less than the wage established by a mandatory order may recover in a civil action the full amount due him. Any employer discriminating against an employee for giving testimony or serving on a wage board is guilty of a misdemeanor.

Provision is made for reconsideration and review of the minimum wage standards after a wage order has been in effect for six months.

Minimum wage orders covering approximately 165,000 women and minors are in effect in the laundry, beauty service, confectionery, cleaning and dyeing, restaurant and hotel industries. (June.


New York State Labor Relations Act

Source: New York State Department of Labor

Chapter 443, effective July 1, 1937, and known as the N. Y. State Labor Relations Act, is modeled upon the National Labor Relations Act. The State Act applies particularly to industries in intrastate commerce, excepting from its applications employers and employees admittedly subject to the National Labor Relations Act or the Federal Railway Labor Act. Employees of the State, municipality or other governmental agency, charitable, religious or educational organizations, domestic servants and farm laborers are also exempt.

The Act affirms the rights of employees to selforganization, to form, join or assist labor unions, to bargain collectively with representatives of their own choosing, free from interference, restraint, or coercion of employers. It makes the representatives selected by the majority of the employees the exclusive bargaining agency in respect to conditions of employment. Employees may at any time present grievances to employers directly or through representatives.

The State Labor Relations Board is authorized to decide the appropriate unit for collective bargaining, as employer, craft or plant unit; provided that, where the majority of employees of a particular craft shall so decide, the Board must designate such craft as the appropriate unit. It may also conduct investigations, hearings and elections, if necessary, to ascertain proper representatives. Individuals hired for the duration of a strike are barred from participation in elections. Company unions cannot be listed on ballots. The Board cannot intervene in controversies between persons or groups within a labor organi

zation or between labor organizations affiliated with the same parent organization.

The Act includes in unfair labor practices, such infringement upon the rights of employees as discharge or refusal to hire, or discrimination in regard to any condition of employment because of membership or activity in any labor organization, refusal to bargain collectively or discuss grievances with employees' duly selected representatives, assisting in the formation or contributing to the support of any company union, interference with selforganization, spying upon employees' activities, blacklisting, discharge for exercising rights conferred by or giving information or testimony under the Act.

In cases of alleged unfair practices, the Board can hold hearings, subpoena persons, records, etc., and take testimony. If violations are proved, the Board can serve cease and desist orders upon the employer and may take further action, such as ordering reinstatement of employees discriminated against by the unfair labor practice. Petition to the State Supreme Court is allowed to the Labor Relations Board for enforcement of its rulings and to the employers for appeal from the Board's decisions. Interference with the activities of the State Labor Relations Board or with employees' exercise of their rights in an election of representatives is penalized.

The Board reported it was instrumental in settling about 117 strikes, involving approximately 1,946 employees, during 1940. For the 4-year period since the establishment of the Board in July, 1937. it was instrumental in preventing or settling over 900 strikes involving 72,000 employees.

Average Weekly Earnings in Factories in New York State

Source: New York State Department of Labor.

Includes all employees in both office and shop Month 1928 1929 1930 1931 1932 1933 1934 1935 1936 1937 1938 1939 1940


Jan.. $29.21 $29.71 $29.80 $27.01 $24.35 $20.96 $22.79 $23.92 $24.82 $26.69 $25.96 $26.82 $27.74 Feb. 29.16 29.99 29.46 27.44 24.02 20.95 22.76 24.11 24.80 26.90 26 35 27.02 27.54 March. 29.64 30.35 29.90 27.96 24.14 20.73 23.39 24.62 25.21 27.78 26.46 27.65 28.11 28.79 30.07 29.44 27.35 23.36 21.02 23.34 24.36 24.83 27.97 25.86 26.84 27.44 29.19 30.03 29.10 26.96 22.59 21.49 23.38 24.05 24.88 27.92 25.56 26.68 27.77 29.48 30.02 28.96, 26.34 22.20 21.95 23.24 24.04 25.01 28.00 25.71 27.05 28.13 29.15 29.80 28.50 26.39 21.82 22.34 23.12 23.93 25.25 27.81 25.99 27.09 28.18 29.38 30.09 28.59 26.33 21.92 22.48 23.43 24.52 25.79 28.09 26.50 27.52 28.67 29.72 30.47 28.94 26.16 22.50 22.87 23.24 24.83 25.19 27.41 27.16 27.16 29.11 29.78 30.08 28.03 25.34 22.55 22.52 23.02 24.68 25.75 27.24 26.88 27.80 29.06 29.62 29.54 27.42 24.99 21.74 22.25 22.92 24 24 25.68 26.12 26.27 27.72 28.94 30.12 29.75 27.52 24.74 21.62 22.43 23.63 25.02 26.84 26.36 26.90 28.19 30.09



Sept. Oct. Nov.


Av.for yr. $29.44 $29.99 $28.81 $26.42 $22.73/$21.83/$23.19] $24.36 $25.34 $27.36 $26.29 $27.29 $28.40 Average for (1915) $12.85; (1916) $14.43; (1917) $16.37; (1918) $20.35; (1919) $23.50; (1920) $28.15; (1921) $25.72; (1922) $25.04; (1923) $27.24; (1924) $27.68; (1925) $28.26; (1926) $29.02; (1927) $29.30.

Unemployment Insurance in New York State

Source: New York State Department of Labor

The Unemployment Insurance Law of the State of New York (Article 18 of the Labor Law) became effective April 25, 1935, and on January 24, 1936, it was approved by the Social Security Board under the provisions of Title IX of the Federal Social Security Act which had not been enacted until August 14, 1935.

Employer contributions to the unemployment Insurance Fund became assessable January 1, 1936, at the rate of 1 per cent of insured payrolls during 1936, and at 2 per cent during 1937, and at 3 per cent during 1938 and 1939. By a 1940 amendment to the Law, the contribution rates for 1940 and thereafter were reduced from 3 to 2.7 per cent. As required by the Social Security Act, all monies collected under the New York State Unemployment Insurance Law are deposited with the Secretary of the Treasury in an Unemployment Trust Fund, subject to requisition by the State Division of Placement and Unemployment Insurance for the payment of benefits as provided under the State Law. Contributions are payable quarterly and must be accompanied by detailed payroll reports. Since January 1, 1938, contributions were payable on the first $3,000 of wages of all workers in the employ of covered employers.

Employers not subject to the Law may become voluntarily insured for an initial two-year period and for one-year periods thereafter with the consent of the Industrial Commissioner. Both subject and non-subject employers are required to keep accurate records of wages paid to each employee. By a 1941 amendment to the Law employers who fail to comply with the demand to furnish statements not previously submitted-on individual employee's earnings are subject to a penalty of $3.00 with respect to each employee and to each calendar quarter involved, not to exceed $500 with respect to any calendar quarter. Once subject, an employer ceases to be subject only after a finding by the Industrial Commissioner that he has not within any 15 days in the preceding calendar year employed four or more persons in employment subject to the Law. An employer who has become subject to the Law and fails to notify the Industrial Commissioner of such fact within six months is subject to a penalty in the amount of 100 per cent of accrued earnings not to exceed $500 nor to be less than $50 for each calendar year (effective April 17. 1941).

Employment of four or more persons within each of 13 or more calendar weeks in the years 1935 and 1936 made employers subject to the Law on and after January 1, 1936. Employment of four or more persons within each of fifteen or more days within any calendar year after December 31, 1936 makes an employer subject to the Law on and after the first of the fifteen days within which such employment occurs.

Employees of New York or out-of-State employees are eligible to apply for benefits in New York if the major part of their base-year employment was in New York State; or, in case the work was not confined to any one State, if some of their employment was in New York and the base of operations was in New York; or if the base of operations or place from which service is directed is not any State in which some part of the service is performed, but the individual's residence is in New York State. Tips, bonuses, vacation pay, and other gratuities are wages on which contributions must be paid; dismissal wages, except under special circumstances, are not. Payments made by an em

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ployer under a retirement, sickness, or accident disability plan, effective January 1, 1940, are not wages to be used as a basis for benefit payment. Exemptions under the Law include: employers of agricultural labor as defined in the Law (amplified by 1941 amendments); employers of spouse or minor child; non-profitmaking religious, scientific, charitable, literary, and educational bodies; New York State's municipal corporations and other governmental subdivisions; employment as a golf caddy (effective March 21, 1940); employment as a part-time worker of any person actually in regular attendance during the day time as a student in an institution of learning (effective April 26, 1940); and (after June 30, 1940) employment covered by the Federal Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act. National banks and other Federal instrumentalities except those wholly owned by the United States or those exempt from the Federal Unemployment Tax Act were brought under the coverage of the Law as of January 1, 1940.

Benefits are payable according to a fixed schedule in the Law. Benefits range from a minimum of $7 to a maximum of $15 a week at $1 intervals. Duration of benefits is limited to 13 weeks within the benefit year. The base year (during which wages are earned determining eligibility) is the calendar year immediately preceding the beginning of a benefit year. A new benefit year begins each April 1. The waiting period covers three weeks, which need not be consecutive.

If "reasonably fitted" by training and experience, eligible claimants must accept offered employment unless its acceptance include joining a company union, quitting a labor union, working in an establishment where an industrial controversy exists, working for substandard wages or under substandard conditions, or working at a place so remote from home that expenses of travel are substantially greater than that required in his former employment unless the expense is provided for. An employee may also refuse employment for "good cause, but, whatever may be the cause for refusal of employment, benefits are not paid if the circumstances show that the employee has withdrawn temporarily or permanently from the labor market (1941 amendment of the Law).

A 1941 amendment to the Law provides a penalty for workers who voluntarily leave their employment without good cause. Another amendment, in effect September 29, 1941, provides for a suspension of accumulation of benefit rights rather than an extended waiting period for loss of employment due to a strike, lockout, or other industrial controversy. The same amendment makes provision for reduction of benefits in cases of wilful false statement or representation to obtain benefits.

Provision is made in the Law for hearings by Referees on disputed points with regard to benefit claims or with regard to determinations affecting employers' contributions. Appeal may be made from the decisions of the Referees to the Appeal Board and then, on question of law, to the courts. It is estimated that approximately 4,700,000 persons worked in covered employment during 1940. At the beginning of 1940, the Unemployment Insurance Fund totaled $177,912,009; net contributions deposited during the year were $127,069,116; interest credited amounted to $4,651,847: benefits paid during the calendar year totaled $98,798,082; and transfer of $6,857,977 to the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Account (Federal) was effected during the year. This left a balance on hand of $203,976,913 at the end of 1940.

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Public assistance in New York State consists of the home relief program-including veteran relieffinanced by state and local fands, and the three special types of assistance in whose financing the Federal Government participates-old age assistance, aid to dependent children, and assistance to the blind. The distribution of Federal surplus commodities, an additional form of relief, is carried out in conjunction with the public assistance program.

During the calendar year 1940, a monthly average of 423,682 persons received public assistance totaling $169,732,680. Of this amount 36.0 percent was from state funds, 50.2 percent from local funds, and 13.8 percent from federal funds.

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Population of N. Y. State-Urban and Rural: 1790 to 1940

Source: United States Bureau of the Census; minus sign (-) denotes decrease

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7 Population 8,404,778 16 Population 800.121 Places of 10,000-25,000.. Number 730,349


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Per cent rural.

Per cent rural-farm..

Urban groups:

Cities of 100,000 or more'. Number

Cities of 25.000-100,000..Number

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706,446 782,954 1,359,668 1,012,429

P. ct.


-76,508-9.8 347,239 34.3


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Places of 5,000-10,000...Number

47 41



6,807,810 5,646,249 4,060,571 2,711,204 1,596,968|


8 396,462 28 458,937








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Other rural territory.... Population 1,702,184 1,448,506 1,575,826 1,625,057 1,823,989 253,678 12,588,066 10,385,227 9,113,614 7,268,894 6,003,174 2,202,839|

Farms in New York State-How Owned

Source: United States Bureau of the Census

81 286,192 144 229,086 221 117.791

25 72 251,979

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56 198,112




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150 235,197 201 117,097

145 231,521

118 183,412

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192 114,205

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