This section includes articles written from a variety of points of view, and some personal recollections relevant to the history of American social welfare programs, issues, and personalities.

  • Perkins, Frances: The Roosevelt YearsThe Labor department that Perkins found called into play all her research and political skills. It was corrupt and inefficient and hadn’t accomplished much. Many were removed and some eventually went to jail. No detail was too small. In her shabby offices cockroaches were found. This was because black employees were not allowed to use the department cafeteria and brought their lunches to work. She and her secretary cleaned the office and soon ordered the cafeteria to be integrated.
  • Redefining the Federal Role in Social Welfare: 1995 - John E. Hansan, Ph.D. and Dr. Robert MorrisThe November 1994 congressional elections transformed the perennial debate over how much of the national income should be allocated for social welfare, how broadly or narrowly should the welfare responsibility of government be defined, what populations or institutions should receive benefits or administer them, and how to divide the costs.
  • Robert M. Ball, Social Security Pioneer - Larry DeWitt, Historian, U.S. Social Security AdministrationBall started his career in the Social Security field in 1939 and he labored on issues related to Social Security without stint for the next 69 years, working up until two weeks before his death at age 93.
  • Roots of Social Security - Frances PerkinsBefore I was appointed, I had a little conversation with Roosevelt in which I said perhaps he didn't want me to be the Secretary, of Labor because if I were, I should want to do this, and this, and this. Among the things I wanted to do was find a way of getting unemployment insurance, old-age insurance, and health insurance. I remember he looked so startled, and he said, "Well, do you think it can be done?"I said, "I don't know." He said, Well, there are constitutional problems, aren't there?" "Yes, very severe constitutional problems," I said. "But what have we been elected for except to solve the constitutional problems? Lots of other problems have been solved by the people of the United States, and there is no reason why this one shouldn't be solved.""Well," he said, "do you think you can do it?" "I don't know, " I said But I wanted to try. "I want to know if I have your authorization. I won't ask you to promise anything." He looked at me and nodded wisely. "All right," he said, "I will authorize you to try, and if you succeed, that's fine."
More Than Sixty Years With Social Group Work: A Personal and Professional History

Personal history is not Truth with a capital T. It is the way the past was experienced and the way the teller sees it. I will try to share with you more than 6o years of group work history that I have been a part of and perhaps a party to.

Daniel Coit Gilman: Unrecognized Social Work Pioneer

Daniel Coit Gilman is most known for his contributions to American higher education. This paper presents information which shows that he developed practice principles that are still valid, opened Johns Hopkins University to a wide range of social welfare education and activities, and educated several of the most important founders of professional social work.