For those unfamiliar, Welfare payments are made in the US to individuals and families with income below a level. The following quotations are taken from actual letters received by the Welfare Department in applications for support of receiving payments.
I am forwarding my marriage certificate and 6 children. I had seven but one died which was baptized on a half sheet of paper.
I am writing the welfare department to say that my baby was born two years old. When do I get my money?
Mrs. Jones has not had any clothes for two years and has been visited regularly by the clergy.
I cannot get sick pay. I have six children can you tell me why?
I am glad to report that my husband who is missing is dead.
This is my eighth child. What are you going to do about it.
Please find for if my husband is dead. The man I am now living with can’t do anything until he knows.
I am very much annoyed to find out that you have branded my son illiterate. This is a dirty lie as I was married a week before he was born.
In answer to your letter, I have given birth to a son weighing 10 lbs. I hope this is satisfactory.
I am forwarding my marriage certificate and my 3 children one of which is a mistake as you can see.
My husband got his project cut off about two weeks ago and I haven’t had any relief since.
Unless I get my husband’s money pretty soon, I will be forced to lead an immortal life.
You have my changed little boy to a girl, will this make any difference?
I have no children yet, as my husband is a truck driver and works night and day.
I want money as quick as I can get it. I have been in bed with the doctor for two weeks and he doesn’t do me any good. If things don’t improve, I will have to send for another doctor.
In accordance with your instructions, I have given birth to twins in the enclosed envelope.