After years of advocacy by women reformers, in 1909, President Theodore Roosevelt convened a White House Conference on the Care of Dependent Children, resulting in a new agency: a Children’s Bureau. President Taft signed legislation creating the Children’s Bureau in 1912, appointing social worker Julia Lathrop, a veteran of Hull House, as its first Chief. The early Children’s Bureau was primarily charged with investigation and reporting on the welfare of children. Only through the passage of legislation in subsequent years did the Children’s Bureau gain the power to enforce new laws and enact new assistance programs as originally imagined.
Galleries & Exhibits
- 11865-1925: Hunger in the Industrial City
- 21929-1940: America in Crisis and Recovery
- 31945-1965: WWII and the Paradoxes of the Postwar Era
- 41955-1980: The Fight for the Right to Food
- 51975-1996: The Unmaking of the Great Society
- 61997-Present: How It Is — And How It Should Be