on the pics for full size.
Jenny Larson is only 24 years old, but already is a widow.
After having lost all his fortune on the stock market, her dear
husband shot himself in the head, leaving his lovely
wife to the mercy of his creditors.
Arriving at the court, for what she thinks is only a meeting with
creditors, she is astonished to be handcuffed and sentenced to work off the debts by forced
As a forced field labourer, it will take her at least 50 years before she is free again!
Honor! Mrs. Larson is an educated woman.
For over a year she has been the secretary to the manager of our
She can pay all of her late husbandīs debts in 2 years or less,
if you allow her her freedom!"
"You must understand Mr. Locan. Mrs. Larson is a
very young woman. She is not yet 25. I cannot
take the responsibility that she might run away. Maybe to
Mexico or Europe!
This is my decision! - Mrs. Jenny Larson, you are
to be taken to the state detention farm, where you will remain
until all of your late husband Mr. B. Larsonīs
remaining debts are
girls! - Say hello to Jenny.
She is going to stay with you
for a looong time!"
off everything! You wonīt
need any of those fancy clothes here!"
"Put this on!
It will suit you much better!"
for your own security. It keeps you girls from straying, when
you ought to be working!"
"They told me that I must pay for my dress and
All right, I agree. I am not a criminal.
I am here to pay off a debt.!
But why so much? Is this dress made of silk? No! It is cheap
Worn and dirty. Taken from another poor girl who died last
And are these golden chains and silver bracelets?
No! Itīs simply rusty iron! I must work half a year
more on the chain gang to earn this money.
How can it be so expensive?
The smith chained my ankles in two minutes!
They are a real gang of robbers.
Itīs good that we are barefooted
and only have these cotton dresses.
If I also had to pay for shoes and underwear, I would never be
They also told me I have to pay for my food and water.
How much will they charge for that?"
early next morning!
out of your wanking pit!
You have a lot of work to do today!"
aching limbs after having tried to sleep
on the cold dirt floor,
Jenny joins the chain gang for her first day in the fields.
- New girl! Get moving! Keep in row! You
will be very sorry if you get behind!"
"Oh no! I am so thirsty, and this headache is
killing me. I asked for a pill and a cup of water, but he only
laughed at me and spit right in my face. Nobody has ever spit
on me before. It was so humiliating. I have only been working
8 or 9 hours, but my hands and feet are already raw with
blisters and abrasions and it hurts all over. It has also
begun tickling under my hair and in my private parts. I must
have got lice!
Ahh! I stepped on a sharp stone again.
Everything is so horrible. Will I ever survive this?"
Itīs Jennyīs first day at work. She has been hoeing all day
Soaked with sweat, she slowly steps backwards over the endless
field, while hacking the hard and dusty soil. She is so
exhausted by the heat and
the unaccustomed work, that she feels like falling to the
ground at any minute, but she dare not do it. The sight
of the scares and sores from the whip on the other girlīs backs
frightens her. She knows that
she will only be paid for the dayīs work if she meets the
whole work quota.
- Please no more! Iīm sorry! Please stop!"
"You lazy upper-class chick! You think pretending to
faint will earn you a break?
This will teach you!
Now - Get up! And from now on you keep the pace!"
female chain gangs are used for all kinds of hard labor. Also,
the railway company, has for years rented women from the detention
farms to do the heavy and dirty work. They know the job will always be done on
time if they promise the overseers a bonus.
has been working in chains for 2 years now. She is also
regularly put to work on the railroad during periods when there is
not enough work on the
farm for all the girls to do.
want to die Jenny! I am so hungry and thirsty and it
hurts all over. Why canīt you understand? We will
never earn enough money to pay our debts!"
"We must never give up Louise! As long as we are
alive, there is hope! Iīve heard that next week, some
of us will be taken to town to work there. If some of my
friends see me there, it might be a chance to
get away from here.
For some of my friends such as Kitty or Rachel, our debts are
only pocket money!"
One evening, after returning home to the farm for the night,
Jenny sits beside Louise. Even though Louise has only
been on the farm for a few weeks, she is already in a very
poor state. Again today she was beaten savagely, because she is too slight to keep up the
demanded work pace. Like Jenny, Louise is not a criminal, but a young
widow sentenced to work off her late husbandīs debts.
Her fate is even more cruelthan Jennyīs. At eighteen she had run away from home,
to seek her fortune. She had been working as a waitress,
when an elderly but apparently rich and handsome man had made
her an offer of marriage. He was divorced and said he had friends in Hollywood, and he
would make a movie star of her, if she would marry him. Being
both pretty, young and naive she said yes, and a few days
later they had got married.
Her happiness didnīt last long. Only a short time after
their marriage, her husband had a stroke and died. It had not
come as a surprise for either him or his former wife and
children. The doctors had told them some time ago that it
could happen at any time. That was why he had divorced
his wife and had married Louise. To be sure his beloved
real wife and their children could not be persecuted by his
creditors. He had divorced her and had only married Louise to
use her as a scapegoat. Now she was stuck with all his debts,
and because of her young age she was, like Jenny, sentenced to
work it off on the chain gangs.
the early morning, while normal people still sleep in their warm
beds, the barefooted prisoners walks through the cold foggy streets.
Only a few of them notice the rattling noises,
as they are taken to their workplaces.
and the other girls have already been working for hours when the
city slowly begins to wake up. Men and women on their way to work
pass them, mostly without taking any notice of them.
Every time Jenny sees somebody, she hopes it is someone she knows.
is in despair!
The whole first day has gone by, and she hasnīt seen anybody that
might have helped her.
Tomorrow will be the last day she is going to work in town this
What if she doesnīt meet anybody today either?
of the next day passes like the first one.
Then suddenly about noon,
Jennyīs heart begins to beat harder.
She sees Rachel, her best friend since high school and very wealthy,
coming down the sidewalk in her direction!
- I am so glad to see you! Itīs me Jenny ..."
"Oh - hello Jenny!
Are you aware of how bad you smell?"
"Rachel - They force me to work as if I was a criminal!
Please, can you lend me the money? Itīs not much.
I will get a job and pay you back as quickly as I can!"
"Dear Jenny, donīt you know that money must never come
between friends? What will happen if I loan you the money, and
you canīt pay it back?
You will feel much better later, if you know
you have paid with your own work and not by charity!"
you must excuse me!
I am sorry, I canīt kiss you goodbye,
but it will ruin my perfume. Kitty is waiting for me.
We are going to have lunch together
before we go shopping.
new collection of expensive French fashion has come in and we MUST see it!
Goodbye Jenny, stay well!"
"Rachel! - Rachel!! - RACHEL!!! - PLEASE!!!
"How long have I been in the stocks now? It must be
12 days. That means there are 18 days more to go.
All because the overseer saw me while I was talking to Rachel.
We slaves are not allowed to talk to anybody, and all because
I was trying to borrow money to pay off my debts, I am also
punished for trying to escape!
I must spend one whole month standing naked outdoors in the
stocks, day and night. Every morning and every evening,
after they feed me, they whip my back and bottom. I donīt
think I have any skin left there anymore. During the daytime
the flies crawl all over me and suck on my wounds. At
night it gets worse. Then all the mosquitoes and gnats
feed on me. They crawl all over me and up my moist cleft!
I try to pee to chase them away, but as soon as I have to
stop, they crawl up again and tickle and bite me. I rub my
thighs together to ease the tickling, but I have to be very
careful nobody sees it. If the guard sees it and
misunderstands why I am doing it, and believes I am doing
something very naughty, I will be punished further!
But all this isnīt the worst!
The worst is that I canīt work while standing here and
when I canīt work, I donīt earn any money. Instead of
paying off the debt, it grows larger. I still have to
pay for my food, and now also to have my shit removed once a
week. They charge me for the daily whippings, and I also
have to pay rent for using the stocks!
It will take me two more years to only to pay for this month.
Louise is right - None of us are ever going to leave this
place alive again!