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Among the Bulgarians, Roumanians, and Servians the tendency to move from one place to another is very strong. This tendency grows largely out of the economic motive, the desire to secure more profitable work, but aside from this there also seems to be a desire among these races to seek change of work and environment. In satisfying this inclination to change, a large part of their savings are lost in paying transportation and fees of labor agents.
AGE CLASSIFICATION OF MEMBERS OF HOUSEHOLDS.
The table next presented shows, by sex and by general nativity and race of head of household, the per cent of persons, in the households studied, within each age group:
TABLE 627.—Per cent of persons within each age group, by sex and by general nativity and
race of head of household.
Of the total number of foreign-born persons studied in the community, it is seen from the preceding table that 89.5 per cent of the Bulgarians are from 20 to 44 years of age, the largest proportion being from 20 to 29 years old. The Bulgarians have practically no children in the households studied and very few persons over 45 years of age. On the other hand, although 68.9 per cent of the Magyars are between the ages of 20 and 44 years, and the largest percentage, as in the case of the Bulgarians, are 20 to 29 years of age, the households of this race, in contrast to the Bulgarians, show 10.5 per cent of children under 6 years of age and 3.6 per cent from 6 to 13 years old. The Magyars also have a larger proportion of persons who are more than 45 years old. As regards the males, the largest proportions both of the Bulgarians and Magyars are 20 to 29 years of age, the next highest percentage shown by the households of each race being between 30 and 34 years old. The Magyars, in contrast with the Bulgarians, also show a considerable proportion of males under 6 years of age and a small proportion between the ages of 6 and 13 years. Of the 6 Bulgarian females 4 are between the ages of 30 and 44 years, while the remaining 2 are under 6 years of age. On the other hand, 16.4 per cent of the Magyar females are between 16 and 19 years old, 37 per cent between 20 and 29 years, and 19.2 per cent between 30 and 44 years old; 17.8 per cent of the Magyar females are also under 6 years of age.
IMMIGRANT SOCIETIES AND INSTITUTIONS.
Mercantile houses Newspapers Systems of control-Churches and church work.
A peculiar form of business organization exists among the aliens both in the immigrant sections of the towns and in Hungary Hollow. It consists in uniting under one head all the different forms of business enterprise which are conducted in the community and really embodies the attempt on the part of one business house to satisfy all the wants of the people. One concern not only supplies bread, meat, clothes, and other necessities of life, but also intoxicants, dance halls, summer gardens, billiard and pool halls, banking facilities
, and even the weekly newspaper. Profits are secured from supplying the whole possible scale of wants on the part of the alien population.
These business organizations are termed "mercantile houses," and they consist of a number of separate enterprises united under one central management somewhat like an American holding company with subsidiary corporations. In the case of the mercantile houses, the business of the concern centers in the banks. These banks, which are practically only one part of the firm's business, act as a central point of management, as a clearing house, and as a means of coordinating all the different interests of the concern. The businesses are not incorporated and are usually owned by one man or a group of men under an informal partnership. A typical house of this description will own a number of brick buildings, located perhaps in different sections but usually grouped together, the ground floors of which are used to house its different stores and enterprises, and the upper floors—sometimes containing more than 50 rooms, are rented for living purposes. The extent of the business conducted may be seen from an examination of the following list of undertakings which may be owned and managed by a typical mercantile house: a. Grocery store.
i. Billiard and pool room. 6. Meat shop.
j. Theater or amusement hall, etc. €. Dry goods and clothing store.
k. Real estate and rental business. d. Saloon.
1. Newspaper (weekly or twice a week). e. Coffee house.
m. Dairy 4. Bakery.
n. Restaurant. g. Bank.
0. Baths. h. Steamship agency.
The stores of these concerns, especially the grocery stores, are as good if not better than the average American store, and the saloons are the counterpart of the average American saloon. The bakeries turn out Bulgarian bread-a loaf weighing 4 pounds—and have a capacity of 400 to 700 loaves per day. So far as the real estate business is concerned, the mercantile house of course rents its own living rooms, and those in Hungary Hollow usually own a number of cottages and act as agents for American real estate firms which have extensive holdings in adjacent lands and cottages. The steamshipagency element in the business is simply an agency for selling transportation on the different Atlantic steamship lines, for which the mercantile houses receive a commission. It is commonly stated however, that, by taking advantage of his ignorance, they also charge the purchaser of the ticket a commission.
The coffeehouses are of the same kind as those found in other alien localities and are modeled after similar institutions in Europe. They are intended to cater to the tastes and habits of the Bulgarians, Armenians, and Roumanians who do not patronize the American saloon or drink intoxicants after the manner of the Germans, Austrians, Magyars, and the members of other races. The coffeehouses are usually large, well-lighted rooms, furnished with small tables
plain chairs. Tobacco in all its forms, including even the Turkish pipe, is to be had, and tea, coffee, cider, soft drinks, and ice cream are served. The walls are decorated with cheap pictures of representative men and women, scenes, and events in Macedonia and Bulgaria. A phonograph is always at hand. These institutions are primarily a place of rendezvous and social resort for the alien population. They tend to retard Americanization by segregating the alien population, and preventing contact with Americans and American habits, and in preserving Old World customs and institutions.
The immigrant bank, as mentioned before, is the central accounting and executive office of the mercantile house. All the individual accounts are here brought together from the various subsidiary concerns and collected. The steamship and real estate agency is also conducted in direct connection with it. In addition to these functions a banking business is carried on somewhat similar to the American system of banking: Deposits are received subject to check upon the usual American plan. A copy of the deposit slip in general use is presented herewith: