Jane Addams

Jane Addams

Infobox Person
name = Jane Addams

birth_date = birth date|1860|9|6|mf=y
birth_place = Cedarville, Illinois
death_date = death date and age|1935|5|21|1860|9|6
death_place = Chicago, Illinois
occupation = Activist
spouse =
parents = John H. Addams and Sarah Weber
children =

Laura Jane Addams (September 6, 1860 – May 21, 1935) was a founder of the U.S. Settlement House movement, and the first American woman to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.


Born in Cedarville, Illinois, Jane Addams was the last of twenty-seven children born into a prosperous, loving family.cite book | last = Haberman | first = Frederick | title = Nobel Lectures, Peace 1926-1950 | publisher = Elsevier Publishing Company | date = 1972 | location = Amsterdam | url = http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/peace/laureates/1931/addams-bio.html ] Her mother was Sarah Addams (née Weber) and her father was a banker and state senator John H. Addams. cite news | title = Jane Addams A Foe of War and Need | work = New York Times| date = May 22, 1935 | url = http://www.nytimes.com/learning/general/onthisday/bday/0906.html | accessdate = 2008-02-09] She was a first cousin twice removed to Charles Addams, noted macabre cartoonist for The New Yorker. [Davis, Linda H. "Charles Addams: A Cartoonist's Life". Random House, Inc. 2006.] She was born with a congenital spinal defect and although this was later corrected by surgery, she was never truly robust.

Jane grew up in comfort but was taught well. Addams' father taught her philanthropy and compassion for other people. He encouraged her to pursue a higher education, but not at the expense of losing her femininity and the prospect of marriage and motherhood, as expected of upper class young women. She was educated in the United States and Europe, graduating from the Rockford Female Seminary (now Rockford College) in Rockford, Illinois. After Rockford, she wanted to pursue a degree in medicine, but her parents felt that she was sufficiently educated and feared for her marriage prospects.

While in London, Addams was influenced by an essay, "The Bitter Cry of Outcast London", [Rev Andrew Mearns 1883 http://www.attackingthedevil.co.uk/related/outcast.php] which highlighted slum conditions.cite book |title=Cities of Tomorrow |author=Hall, Peter |publisher=Blackwell Publishing |date=2002 |chapter=Chapter 2] She visited Europe when she was 27 years old, visiting Toynbee Hall, a settlement house in the East End of London.

Hull House

In 1889 she and her friend, Ellen Gates Starr co-founded Hull House in Chicago, Illinois, one of the first settlement houses in the United States. At its height, Hull House was visited each week by around two thousand people. Its facilities included a night school for adults, kindergarten classes, clubs for older children, a public kitchen, an art gallery, a coffeehouse, a gymnasium, a girls club, a swimming pool, a book bindery, a music school, a drama group, a library, and labor-related divisions. She is probably most remembered for her adult night school, a forerunner of the continuing education classes offered by many universities today.

Hull House also served as a women's sociological institution. Addams was a friend and colleague to the early members of the Chicago School of Sociology, influencing their thought through her work in applied sociology and, in 1893, co-authoring the "Hull-House Maps and Papers" that came to define the interests and methodologies of the School. She worked with George H. Mead on social reform issues including promoting women's rights, ending child labor, and the mediating during the 1910 Garment Workers' Strike. Although academic sociologists of the time defined her work as "social work", Addams did not consider herself a social worker. She combined the central concepts of symbolic interactionism with the theories of cultural feminism and pragmatism to form her sociological ideas (Deegan, 1988).

Hull House's first resident:Jane describes the Hull House's "first resident" as an older lady who read to listeners from Hawthorne. She reported that she wanted to live in a place where "idealism ran high" (1910, 101). Volunteers seemed plentiful. Ellen read George Eliot's "Romola" to listeners and Jenny Dow, another volunteer, started a kindergarten (1910).

Hull House also offered an employment bureau, an art gallery, libraries, and music and art classes. Among the projects that the members of the Hull House opened were the Immigrants' Protective League, the Juvenile Protective Association, the first juvenile court in the United States, and a Juvenile Psychopathic Clinic. [The "Juvenile Psychopathic Clinic" was later called the "Institute for Juvenile Research", see: cite web| url = http://www.uic.edu/jaddams/hull/ja_bio.html | title = "Jane Addams Hull-House Museum" at the University of Illinois at Chigao| accessdate = 2007-11-24]

Peace Movement

Addams helped organize the Women's Peace Party and the International Congress of Women in an effort to avert the first World War. In 1917, after America entered the war, she was expelled from the Daughters of the American Revolution.

In 1920 she was elected first president of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, the successor organization to the Women's Peace Party. She continued in the presidency until her death.

Personal relationships

Throughout her life Addams was close to many women and was very good at eliciting the involvement of women from different classes in Hull Houses's programmes. Her closest adult companion and friend was Mary Rozet Smith, who nurtured and supported Addams and her work at Hull House, and with whom she owned a summer house in Bar Harbor, Maine.

The exact nature of their relationship has become a controversy after her death, with some historians believing Addams was a lesbian and in love with Smith, and others calling their relationship a romantic friendship, saying that while the women loved each other and lived together, that did not necessarily indicate a sexual relationship. [Sarah Holmes, "Who's who in Gay and Lesbian History", London, 2000.] [http://www.chicagomag.com/Chicago-Magazine/June-2008/Friends-With-Benefits/"Friends—With Benefits?"] , By Robert Loerzel, "Chicago Magazine", June 2008.] [http://www.chicagofreepress.com/node/1819 "Community discusses ‘recovery’ of Jane Addams as lesbian"] , By Matt Simonette, May 14, 2008, "Chicago Free Press".] "Hull-House Museum poses the question `Was Jane Addams a Lesbian?'", By Nara Schoenberg, 13 February 2007, "Chicago Tribune". [http://www.accessmylibrary.com/coms2/summary_0286-31575983_ITM Online at AccessMyLibrary.com] ] "The Education of Jane Addams", By Victoria Bissell Brown, page 361. [http://books.google.com/books?id=In0FyWy858gC&dq=jane+addams+lesbian&pg=PP1&ots=gKqddAVrJb&source=citation&sig=peSm-VgHEGucIdeQgI__hHcbOlU&hl=en&sa=X&oi=book_result&resnum=11&ct=result#PPA361,M1 Online at Google Books] .]


Jane Addams was a member of the NAACP, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, and the first vice-president of the National American Woman Suffrage Association in 1911. In 1901 she founded the Juvenile Court Committee which has since become the Juvenile Protective Association, a private nonprofit organization in Chicago that protects children from abuse and neglect.She was also actively involved with Pi Gamma Mu, the social science honor society, from the 1920s until her death, because of its emphasis on social service and the humanization of the social science disciplines. In 1998 the British Columbia Branch of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom commissioned Canadian artist Christian Cardell Corbet to create a bronze medallion of Jane Addams to celebrate her life and achievements. The medallion has since been collected by several important museums.

The Jane Addams Peace Association, together with the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, give the annual Jane Addams Children's Book Awards to children's books that promote peace, equality, multiculturalism, and peaceful solutions.

A 2007 joint resolution of the Illinois General Assembly, HJR 19 (Currie), would rename the Northwest Tollway as the "Jane Addams Memorial Tollway".

Jane Addams House is a residence hall built in 1947 at Connecticut College.

Jane Addams Business Careers Center is a high school in Cleveland, Ohio.

The Jane Addams Trail is a bicycling, hiking, snowmobiling, and cross country skiing trail which stretches from Freeport, Illinois to the Wisconsin state line. It is convert|12.85|mi|km long, and is part of the larger Grand Illinois Trail, which is over convert|575|mi|km long. [ [http://www.bikelib.org/git/index.htm Grand Illinois Trail Guide - bikeGIT.org. Hosted by the League of Illinois Bicyclists ] ] The trail is located near her birthplace of Cedarville, Illinois. [ [http://www.janeaddamstrail.com/ Jane Addams Trail – Part of the Grand Illinois Trail ] ]

ee also

* Florence Kelley
* Flora Dunlap
* Mary Treglia
* Jane Addams Burial Site
* Jane Addams School for Democracy
* John H. Addams Homestead
* John Dewey
* Community practice social work
* Stanton Street Settlement


Further reading

* Bowen, Louise de Koven. "Growing up with Pity". New York: The Macmillan Company, 1926.
* Deegan, Mary. "Jane Addams and the Men of the Chicago School, 1892-1918". New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction, Inc., 1988.
* Knight, Louise W. "Citizen: Jane Addams and the Struggle for Democracy". Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2005.
* Polacheck, Hilda Satt. "I Came a Stranger: The Story of a Hull-House Girl". Chicago, Illinois: University of Illinois Press, 1989.

External links

* Looks at her as "the first woman 'public philosopher' in United States history".
* Harvard University Library Open Collections Program. Women Working, 1870-1930. [http://ocp.hul.harvard.edu/ww/people_addams.html Jane Addams (1860-1935).] A full-text searchable online database with complete access to publications written by Jane Addams.
* [http://onlinebooks.library.upenn.edu/webbin/book/search?author=Addams&amode=start Works by Jane Addams] listed at the [http://onlinebooks.library.upenn.edu/ Online Books Page]
* [http://www.uic.edu/jaddams/hull/hull_house.html Jane Addams Hull-House Museum]
* [http://www.attackingthedevil.co.uk/related/outcast.php/ The Bitter Cry of Outcast London] by Rev. Andrew Mearns
* [http://www.swarthmore.edu/library/peace/Exhibits/janeaddams/addamsindex.htm Online photograph exhibit of Jane Addams from Swarthmore College's Peace Collection]
* [http://www.fyne.co.uk/index.php?item=688 Gay Great article in Fyne Times magazine]

NAME = Addams, Jane
SHORT DESCRIPTION = American activist and pacifist
DATE OF BIRTH = September 6, 1860
PLACE OF BIRTH = Cedarville, Illinois, United States
DATE OF DEATH = May 21, 1935

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