Gads Hill Center Records

Institution: Chicago History Museum
1601 N. Clark Street
Chicago, IL 60614
Phone: (312) 642-4600
Date: 1898-1969
Extent: 23 Linear Feet
Finding Aid

Biographical/Historical Note:
Gads Hill Social Settlement was established in 1898 at 869 West 22nd Street, in an area then predominantly inhabited by Polish Americans, German Americans, and Czech Americans. It changed its name to Gads Hill Center in 1916 and moved to a new building at 1919 West 20th Street, later 1919 West Cullerton Street. The organization's goals have been to serve as a neighborhood center, and to encourage better social, economic, and moral conditions for the people of the area. Miss Ruth Austin served as head resident from 1914 to 1923 and from 1926 to 1946. Miss Meta K. Schwiebert was head resident during the 1950s and 1960s. Over the years, many Mexican Americans, Puerto Ricans, and African Americans moved into the neighborhood.

Scope and Content Note:
The collection is composed of correspondence, minutes of meetings of the board of directors of the Gads Hill settlement house, various reports, financial and attendance records, newsclippings, articles, and other sundry papers. Topics include recreational, educational, and social programs and facilities of Gads Hill Center, and living conditions within the Lower West Side community of Chicago. Includes the nursery school; various clubs and groups of children, youths, and adults; the House Council; unemployment relief during 1914-1915 and the Great Depression of the 1930s; the Center's new building in 1916; and the neighborhood during World War I and World War II. Persons representated by correspondence include head residents, Ruth Austin and Meta K. Schwiebert.

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