Jane Addams

Jane Addams

Easton Press Jane Addams books

Twenty Years At Hull House - 1991

Franklin Library Jane Addams books

Twenty Years at Hull House - 100 Greatest Masterpieces of American Literature - 1981

Who was Jane Addams?

Jane Addams (1860-1935), American social-settlement worker, born in Cedarville, Ill., and educated at Rockford Female Seminary, Woman's Medical College (Philadelphia, Pa.), and in Europe. With Ellen Gates Starr, in 1889, Jane Addams established Hull House in Chicago, the leading social settlement, and first of its kind, in the United States. She took a prominent part in the formation of the National Progressive Party in 1912 and of the Woman's Peace Party, of which she became chairman in 1915. Jane Addams was elected president of the International Congress of Women at The Hague in the same year, and president of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, which was established by the Hague congress. She was a delegate to similar congresses held in Zurich (1919), Vienna (1921), The Hague (1922), Washington, D.C. (1924), Dublin (1926), and Prague (1929).

What did Jane Addams do?

 Jane Addams was born on September 6, 1860, in Cedarville, Illinois. She came from a prosperous family and received a privileged upbringing. She attended Rockford Female Seminary (later Rockford College), where she was influenced by the ideas of her teachers and developed a commitment to social reform.

Why did Jane Addams found Hull House?

In 1889, Jane Addams and her friend Ellen Gates Starr co-founded Hull House in Chicago. Hull House was a settlement house that aimed to address the needs of the immigrant population in the city by providing educational, social, and cultural services. It became a model for similar institutions across the United States. Addams was a pioneer in the field of social work. She and her colleagues at Hull House worked to improve the living conditions of the urban poor and to address issues such as child labor, sanitation, and housing. Addams believed in the importance of "social democracy" and worked to bridge gaps between social classes.
Jane Addams won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1931, sharing the award with the American educator Nicholas Murray Butler. 

Twenty Years at Hull House

Twenty Years at Hull House is a seminal work penned by social reformer and activist Jane Addams, chronicling her experiences and endeavors at Hull House, a pioneering settlement house in Chicago. Born in 1860 into a prosperous family in Cedarville, Illinois, Addams emerged as a leading figure in the Progressive Era, dedicated to addressing the social ills plaguing urban America. Published in 1910, Twenty Years at Hull House provides a vivid account of Addams' two decades of service at Hull House, which she co-founded in 1889 with her friend Ellen Gates Starr. Located in one of Chicago's impoverished neighborhoods, Hull House aimed to provide a sanctuary and support system for the city's immigrant population, offering education, healthcare, and social services.

Addams' narrative offers a compelling blend of personal reflection, social analysis, and advocacy. Through anecdotes, case studies, and philosophical musings, she illuminates the challenges faced by immigrants, women, and children in the rapidly industrializing urban landscape of turn-of-the-century America. Addams' commitment to social justice and her belief in the power of collective action shine through as she recounts the battles for labor rights, public health reforms, and women's suffrage. At its core, Twenty Years at Hull House is a testament to the transformative potential of community organizing and grassroots activism. Addams' vision of social reform was grounded in the principles of empathy, solidarity, and democratic participation—a vision that continues to inspire generations of activists and social workers to this day.

Jane Addams' legacy extends far beyond the pages of her memoir. As the first American woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize in 1931, she left an indelible mark on the fields of social work, public health, and humanitarianism. Twenty Years at Hull House remains a touchstone for those committed to building a more just and compassionate society, reminding us that positive change begins with the courage to confront injustice and the compassion to uplift those in need.

Jane Addams quotes

"The good we secure for ourselves is precarious and uncertain until it is secured for all of us and incorporated into our common life."

"Civilization is a method of living, an attitude of equal respect for all men."

"Action indeed is the sole medium of expression for ethics."

"Unless our conception of patriotism is progressive, it cannot hope to embody the real affection and the real interest of the nation."

"The essence of immorality is the tendency to make an exception of myself."

"Old-fashioned ways which no longer apply to changed conditions are a snare in which the feet of women have always become readily entangled."

"America's future will be determined by the home and the school. The child becomes largely what he is taught; hence we must watch what we teach, and how we live."

"The good we seek for ourselves is uncertain until it is secure for all of us."

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