Moby Dick . . . One Man's Pursuit
establish more benign conditions in industrial society and is a major
in what came to be called the Progressive Moment...
well known than Jane Addams or Lilian Wald, was as remarkable a
force for change in American society. She was born into comfortable
circumstances and largely self-educated
her father’s library. On extended stays in Zurich with her ailing
mother she attended lectures at the university, became acquainted with
Russian political exiles (one of whom she married, Lazare, a character
in the play), and became acquainted with the s returning to live in New York with
her husband and children. Itocialist
ideas promoted by the German Social Democratic Party. She translated a
work by Frederick Engels before was the failure
of the marriage which led her, three children in tow, to Chicago and
Hull House as the play opens. Characteristic of her approach to
ameliorating the conditions that surrounded the settlement house, was
her carrying out a detailed inventory of living and working
conditions in a one mile radius, a project that gained the attention of
reformers around the country and government. Liberal Governor Altgeld
appointed Florence the state’s first factory
inspector. In New York she headed the National Consumers League, and it
was through that association that she provided data and observations to
Louis Brandeis. The creation of the U.S. Children’s Bureau in 1912 came
from the inspiration of Kelley and Wald at Henry Street.
Kelley helped establish more benign conditions in industrial society
and is a major in what came to be called the Progressive Moment, which
created so much of the standards for working and living conditions tht
later generations enjoy. Her mantra of “Investigate, educate,
legislate, enforce” is as pertinent in the different conditions of
today as it was in her day.
Tony Pennino’s account of this able and spirited woman will enlighten
and move you.