Overseers of the Public Welfare records

The records of the Overseers of the Public Welfare of the City of Boston (1838-1964), formerly the Overseers of the Poor of the City of Boston, constitute 1.25 linear feet. The largest part of the collection is annual reports of the Overseers of the Poor of the City of Boston (OPB) from 1870-1915 (...

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Bibliographic Details
Access Note:Unrestricted
Corporate Authors: Overseers of the Public Welfare, Simmons College (Boston, Mass.) Archives
Format: Kit
Language:English
Subjects:
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110 2 |a Overseers of the Public Welfare  |c (Boston, Mass.) 
245 1 0 |a Overseers of the Public Welfare records 
260 |f 1838-1964,  |g 1870-1964, 
300 |a 3  |f boxes  |a (1.25 linear ft.) 
351 |a Arranged in three series: Series I. Annual reports. Series II. OPB publications. Series III. Other publications 
506 |a Unrestricted 
520 |a The records of the Overseers of the Public Welfare of the City of Boston (1838-1964), formerly the Overseers of the Poor of the City of Boston, constitute 1.25 linear feet. The largest part of the collection is annual reports of the Overseers of the Poor of the City of Boston (OPB) from 1870-1915 (with gaps) and of its later incarnation, the Overseers of the Public Welfare of the City of Boston (OPWB) from 1924-1964 (with gaps). This collection also includes other publications by the OPB and an 1837 report on pauper statistics in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts 
524 |a Overseers of the Public Welfare records, CC 11, Simmons College Archives, Boston, MA 
540 |a Requests for permission to publish should be addressed to the College Archivist 
541 |a Donald Moreland  |c gift  |d 1988, 1989  |f School of Social Work, transferred, 1991  |e 1996.009 
545 |a The Overseers of the Poor of the City of Boston (OPB) was established in 1691, incorporated in 1772, and reorganized in 1864, at which time they became directly accountable to the city. In the annual report of 1871 to the City Council, it was stated that four board members would be elected by the City Council each year to the unpaid twelve person board, to serve for a term of three years. In addition to the expenditure of public funds appropriated by the City Council for charitable purposes, the Overseers administered private charitable trust funds in accordance with their provisions. In 1914, in accordance with the Massachusetts Acts of 1913, the OPB established a program for Mothers' Aid, a predecessor to Aid to Dependent Children. In 1921, the OPB was renamed the Overseers of the Public Welfare in the City of Boston (OPWB). The agency's continuing objective, "to relieve and aid all poor and indigent persons residing in Boston," had the new proviso "that they are not being aided in institutions." During the Great Depression, from 1930 to 1933, the agency began to receive some federal government funding, began a temporary Unemployment Emergency Relief Fund, and established a program for Old Age Assistance. In addition, the organization had expanded into several branch offices and had begun to issue licenses for collecting funds on public streets. In the annual report of 1944, the agency which the OPWB board members administered was reclassified as the Department of Public Welfare for the City of Boston. By the year 1964, the organization was known simply as the Boston Welfare Department. The Board of Overseers, whose members were now appointed by the mayor, directed the distribution of funds under five assistance programs: Old Age Assistance, Medical Assistance for the Aged, Aid to Dependent Children, Disability Assistance and General Relief, operated the Temporary Home for Women and Children and provided lodging and meals for homeless men. The financing for these programs included funding from city, state and federal appropriations and totaled over fifty-three million dollars. In addition, the board was still responsible for the distribution of nineteen private charitable trust funds left to their care over the years. In 1967, the Boston Welfare Department was abolished when the Massachusetts Department of Public Welfare took over the responsibilities of all city and town public welfare boards within the Commonwealth 
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