Boston's Children's Friend Society papers

The Boston Children's Friend Society papers, divided into four series, consist of records of donations, annual reports and a minute book. The minute book, the first record of the Society's Board meetings, October 8, 1841 - September 4, 1846, contains an account of the daily workings of the...

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Access Note:Unrestricted
Corporate Authors: Boston's Children's Friend Society, Simmons College (Boston, Mass.) Archives
Format: Kit
Language:English
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351 |a Arranged in four series: Series I. Minute books. Series II. Annual reports. Series III. Publications. Series IV. Account books 
545 |a The Boston Children's Friend Society (BCFS) was founded in 1833, to provide a home for orphaned and neglected children. At the time, there were already two orphan homes in Boston, one for boys and one for girls, but neither of these homes allowed brothers and sisters to stay together or provided care for neglected rather than orphaned children. The Society not only cared for the children but also provided them with instruction in general education and religion. When the children were old enough they were given practical training in the manual arts; domestic for girls, carpentry and printing for boys. Certain older boys and girls were also apprenticed or indentured to local families. A new General Secretary of the Society, Sherman Kingsley, was appointed in 1900. Kingsley was instrumental in implementing a program to find individual homes in rural and suburban districts for the children. Kingsley believed that normal children should grow up in a family not an institution. During Kingsley's tenure the financial income of the Society also greatly increased. The Orphan's Home was abandoned, and with the children being placed in foster care, the Society was able to care for more children, eventually taking in Roman Catholics and non-Christians as well. The Society was also influential in proposing laws to protect illegitimate children and children exploited by industry. One such law provided public assistance for single women with dependent children and another proposed to hold the fathers of illegitimate children liable for the child's support. A third law, the Uniform Child-Labor Law, was enacted by the Massachusetts Legislature in 1913 
520 |a The Boston Children's Friend Society papers, divided into four series, consist of records of donations, annual reports and a minute book. The minute book, the first record of the Society's Board meetings, October 8, 1841 - September 4, 1846, contains an account of the daily workings of the Society. Names of Society members as well as some information on the children housed at the institution can also be found in the minutes. The annual reports, comprising the second series, contain such information as the constitution, list of members and donations and the treasurer's report. The reports also include a statement by the corresponding secretary on the activities of the Society and many of the late reports offer sketches of children the Society has helped. The third series is composed of publications such as "Boston Children's Friend Society: 1833-1933," which provides a detailed history of the Society. Also included, is a discourse on the care of the poor delivered before the Society in 1837. Account books containing the names of donors and the amount of their donations make up the fourth series. The Society received donations not only of money but also of food, clothing, medicine, toys, books and furniture 
541 |a Donald Moreland  |c gift  |d 1988  |f School of Social Work, transferred, 1991  |e 78.023, 81.010 
561 |a According to records at the School of Social Work, these records were donated by Donald W. Moreland to the School, July 1977 
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