Book Cover of Living on Half a Dime a Day

Living on Half a Dime a Day

by Sarah Elizabeth Harper Monmouth

How Lizzie Monmouth surmounted her poverty is an equally fascinating tale. She had an artistic bent and a knack for creating folk art from found materials. Working primarily with donated wallpaper sample books and tissue paper, she filled her home and a nearby church with floral garlands and elaborate paper mosaics featuring homilies and bible sayings. Visitors started coming to see her decorations, which an 1879 correspondent to the New York Times said “produce an effect strange, curious, and wonderfully artistic and beautiful.” Lizzie began charging for home tours and selling picture postcards and pamphlets. The enterprising Mrs. Monmouth said of her new livelihood: “I have honestly endeavored to get a ‘show’ worth a dime.”

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Language

English

Original Language

English

Published In

2020

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