Six Remarkable Hull-House Women
by Ruth Bobick
Jane Addams’ ability to attract capable people brought a remarkable group of individuals to Hull-House. Perhaps no more admirable and gifted women could have been assembled anywhere than the six of Addams, Julia Lathrop, Florence Kelley, Alice Hamilton, and Edith and Grace Abbott. Together, they fought selflessly and tirelessly for social justice. Kelley began her residency at the settlement by instigating an anti-sweatshop campaign, while Lathrop dedicated her efforts to the reform of state charities, Hamilton to combatting industrial disease, Edith Abbott to social research, and Grace to newly-arrived immigrants. But it was Addams’ steady hand at the helm that united these distinctive personalities in pursuing common goals.
Industrialization, an influx of immigrant labor, and the spread of city slums, together with a lack of opportunity for the first generation of college women, contributed to the rise of the social settlement movement.
Jane Addams’ Hull-House brought help and hope to impoverished workers, while providing employment for residents and staff through such services as a kindergarten, evening classes, music school, and gymnasium.
Faced with the harsh living and work conditions of neighboring women and children, Hull-House reformers turned to City Hall, then to state and federal legislatures, seeking a solution in government regulation.
The story of “Six Remarkable Hull-House women,” often told in their own words, raises questions and probes problems fundamental to democracy.
About the Author
Ruth Bobick translated two historical novels for young-adults by the popular twentieth-century Greek author Penelope Delta. The first, In the Heroic Age of Basil II, is set in the Balkans at the height of the Byzantine Empire. The second, Secrets of the Swamp, takes place in Macedonia during the decline of the Ottoman Empire. She published background articles for both books in Greece in Print magazine.
Ordering InformationHardcover, $, 172pgs, 5.5x8.5, 35 historic photographs
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