JANE ADDAMS: Social Worker by Mary Kittredge

JANE ADDAMS: Social Worker

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In the late 1880's, Chicago's streets were ""covered inches deep with packed and dirty refuse over broken pavements."" Desperate to clear up the attendant health problems, Addams tried to wrest the responsibility for hauling trash from corrupt contractors who merely transferred it from one place to another. She didn't get the job, but she followed the wagons till publicity brought reform. Among her accomplishments: America's first settlement house, its first cooperative residence for working women, and its first juvenile court, as well as Chicago's first public playground; Addams was also a pioneer in child labor laws, and her untiring efforts with the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom earned her a Nobel Prize. Addams' golden reputation was marred when she exposed the use of drugs to motivate soldiers in WW I and, later, when she fed Germany's postwar victims; but by the time of her death in the 1930's, public opinion had caught up with her more ""radical"" ideas. Kittredge, an experienced biographer, conveys well the excitement of Addams' achievements and the eventful times within her span--Lincoln's death, the rise of unions, the 1929 crash. Bibliography; chronology; index.

Pub Date: May 18th, 1988
Page count: 112pp
Publisher: Chelsea House