Thank You, Jane

Fighting for social justice maybe more important than ever. With children at our borders…in crisis. With Veterans roaming the streets (homeless) of the land they fought to protect. With something as simple as, healthcare for all…a silly debate…

With all this, and socialism shouted from the rooftops of aging, life time politicians, where do we turn?

So many quotes on history and how it repeats. How the United States does not learn from her mistakes. Hatred in every corner of every town…red or blue. Again, it is important to look back to see where we need to grow.

It is well to remind ourselves, from time to time, that “Ethics” is but another word for “righteousness,” that for which many men and women of every generation have hungered and thirsted, and without which life becomes meaningless. Jane Addams

So a little history is what I present!

Addams developed three “ethical principles” for social settlements: “to teach by example, to practice cooperation, and to practice social democracy, that is, egalitarian, or democratic, social relations across class lines.”[46] Thus Hull House offered a comprehensive program of civic, cultural, recreational, and educational activities and attracted admiring visitors from all over the world, including William Lyon Mackenzie King, a graduate student from Harvard University who later became prime minister of Canada. In the 1890s Julia Lathrop, Florence Kelley, and other residents of the house made it a world center of social reform activity. Hull House used the latest methodology (pioneering in statistical mapping) to study overcrowding, truancy, typhoid fever, cocaine, children’s reading, newsboys, infant mortality, and midwifery. Starting with efforts to improve the immediate neighborhood, the Hull House group became involved in city- and statewide campaigns for better housing, improvements in public welfare, stricter child-labor laws, and protection of working women. Addams brought in prominent visitors from around the world, and had close links with leading Chicago intellectuals and philanthropists. In 1912, she helped start the new Progressive Party and supported the presidential campaign of Theodore Roosevelt.

Jane spoke, fought for social injustice. She started with conversations on poverty. And, discussed the bias’d idea that the poor simply did not work hard enough (as many were led to believe.) The poor and down trodden were also victims of the state. The state in which they live; genetics, environment, illness, threat.

Why do we view social reform with such disdain? Why is it such a far fetched idea that…all citizens should be treated equally?

I listened to the (below) listed podcast with baited breath. Wondering why had I not known more about Jane Addams and/or her ‘Boston marriage’ to Mary Rozet Smith?

**The fact of relatively formalized romantic friendships or life partnerships between women predates the term Boston marriage and there is a long record of it in England and other European countries.[1] The term Boston marriage became associated with Henry James‘s The Bostonians (1886), a novel involving a long-term co-habiting relationship between two unmarried women, “new women,” although James himself never used the term. James’ sister Alice lived in such a relationship with Katherine Loring and was among his sources for the novel.[2]

There are many examples of women in “Boston marriage” relationships. In the late 1700s, for example, Anglo-Irish upper-class women Eleanor Butler and Sarah Ponsonby were identified as a couple and nicknamed the Ladies of Llangollen. Elizabeth Mavor suggests that the institution of romantic friendships between women reached a zenith in eighteenth-century England.[1] In the U.S., a prominent example is that of novelist Sarah Orne Jewett and her companion Annie Adams Fields, widow of the editor of The Atlantic Monthly, during the late 1800s.[3]

Why, why, why is not in the best interest of society (centuries ago and/or today) to treat those we live with, eat with, walk amongst, with dignity and respect?

Memories of a Pauper

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If you’ve come for a read that is congruent and cohesive and light and fluffy and organized; turn away now.

Go ahead, just turn the page!  Turn the randomness off.  Let the absolution of life, as it should be, take hold.  You weren’t meant for this blog.

So, I beg of you once more…

‘take your business elsewhere if you are looking for candy coated organized methodical words!’

 

Down the street from the corner of mad meth dealers and two dollar hookers standing in sodden snow.  Over the hill and through the woods, we go to the Pauper’s cemetery.  The cemetery just happens to be, as the turkey vulture flies, two miles exact, from the orphan’s cemetery.

The orphanage as best guess, without doing too much research was built around 1880.  It had been run by bent on the threat of Hell’s angels and nuns in black cloaks.

The pauper cemetery, yet another loosely based research subject: 1820’s or so.  Most stones belong to persons in and out of the insane asylum that had been up the hill.

Most stones, graves, markers and/or place to put the dead, in both of these locations, bare few names, little in the way of epitaphs and typically house numbers.  Numbers such as, VII circa 1776, Number 603 and alike.

If you have never stepped foot in New Hampshire but need a word to describe it, in case you want to impress your friends at a party, STARK!

These leads me to the rest of the randomness and the reason why I feel drawn to these two particular places.

Random Pauper thoughts:

1. Aren’t we all just one attachment away from being a Pauper?

2. Did these numbers linked to granite stone leave someone lonesome?

3. I always want to say, sold my soul to the devil and the devil said to me one word…and that was ‘dead‘.  Where I came up with that thought I’m not sure.  But it attached these persons from the past to me somehow.

4. The gate to the cemetery is always closed.  Always, always, always, the door is shut.  The land is immaculately cared for.  Yet, it appears, two miles in, that no one ever comes around.  When I leave I make a point to open the gate.  Just in case some resident from within wants to take a walk.

5. Morbidity aside, a sense of renewal overcomes the searcher of the finer things while walking on a dreary spring day down a dead-end trail to a dead-end place of rest…for all of eternity.  I get giddy and happy that these people are who I’ve come to visit.  There is no religion shared among any of us for this is our thought on that:

…not a big fan of organized anything…it tends to ruin the imagination…

I took pictures.  As I always do.  My dogs romping and playing and acknowledging these passed by patrons of another century.  My grandmother had been raised by nuns in an orphanage in Worcester.  My spouse had been confined by the state for her cognitive years due to bad behavior no one wanted to deal with.

Personally, I’m not allowed to touch on my family’s history for the secrets run deep.  However, I wonder, how different I am from those who fall into the following ramification:

‘It hurts me to hear the tone in which the poor are condemned as “shiftless” or “having a pauper spirit”, just as it would if a crowd mocked at a child for it’s weakness, or laughed at a lame man because he could not run or a blind man because he stumbled.’

-Albion Fellows Bacon: U.S. social workers and housing reform advocate

To live simply amongst these persons or perhaps those who pass us by at work or at play?   The man or woman riding a bike in three inches or snow with all they own strapped onto their back.  I choose to live as simply as possible.  I believe it is how it should be…life in moderation leave a good taste in everyone’s thoughts and as little impact on bad thoughts as possible.

Therefore, I live as a pretend pauper perhaps.  Not so much by choice as by the sense of belonging-ness that living with little can bring.

tell me dear, Are you lonesome tonight?

 

Albion Fellows Bacon (1865–1933), U.S. social worker and housing reform advocate.
Read more at http://quotes.dictionary.com/It_hurts_me_to_hear_the_tone_in#phl4qg3pgYomaYzO.99
Albion Fellows Bacon (1865–1933), U.S. social worker and housing reform advocate.
Read more at http://quotes.dictionary.com/It_hurts_me_to_hear_the_tone_in#phl4qg3pgYomaYzO.99
It hurts me to hear the tone in which the poor are condemned as “shiftless,” or “having a pauper spirit,” just as it would if a crowd mocked at a child for its weakness, or laughed at a lame man because he could not run, or a blind man because he stumbled.
Read more at http://quotes.dictionary.com/It_hurts_me_to_hear_the_tone_in#phl4qg3pgYomaYzO.99
It hurts me to hear the tone in which the poor are condemned as “shiftless,” or “having a pauper spirit,” just as it would if a crowd mocked at a child for its weakness, or laughed at a lame man because he could not run, or a blind man because he stumbled.
Read more at http://quotes.dictionary.com/It_hurts_me_to_hear_the_tone_in#phl4qg3pgYomaYzO.99
It hurts me to hear the tone in which the poor are condemned as “shiftless,” or “having a pauper spirit,” just as it would if a crowd mocked at a child for its weakness, or laughed at a lame man because he could not run, or a blind man because he stumbled.
Read more at http://quotes.dictionary.com/It_hurts_me_to_hear_the_tone_in#phl4qg3pgYomaYzO.99