Hull House

While in Europe, Jane Addams and Ellen Starr visited the university settlement of Toynbee Hall which had inspired them to start a similar project in Chicago. Helen Culver agreed to rent them Hull House for $60 a month. Most of the people living in the area were recently arrived immigrants from Europe.
Addams and Starr moved in to Hull House on September 18th 1889. They started out by inviting the people living in the area to the House. Addams and Starr decided to start a type of school. Addams attended to the boys and Starr taught the girls basic home skills.
The women then decided to turn Hull House into an art gallery. Starr began art and developed a system where people could borrow art and hang in their own homes.
The locals preformed songs, dances, games and food associated with their home country. Jane Addams said that it was obvious that the object of the settlement program should be to “help the foreign-born conserve and keep whatever of value their past life contained and to bring them into contact with a better class of Americans.”
Women were influenced by Christian Socialism which had also been the base of Toynbee Hall. And Florence Kelley's arrival at Hull House attracted other social reformers to the settlement whom then influenced the working-class women. Kelley and several other women at Hull House contributed to the passing of the Illinois Factory Act.
Wealthy people in Chicago contributed money. This enabled the group to expand its activities. The Hull House settlement has received a lot of support and is spreading to other cities in the United States. So far there are 74 settlements in the United States. These women are just beginning a revolutionary change throughout the U.S.


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