A true American hero is celebrated on Google’s homepage on September 6. It’s Jane Addams‘ 153rd birthday today, and to mark the occasion Google’s homepage has doodle of her famous Hull House.
Hull House was set up in Chicago to care for the city’s poor and needy in 1889. According to the official website of the Hull House museum:
Hull-House, Chicago’s first social settlement was not only the private home of Jane Addams and other Hull-House residents, but also a place where immigrants of diverse communities gathered to learn, to eat, to debate, and to acquire the tools necessary to put down roots in their new country. The Museum is comprised of two of the settlement complex’s original thirteen buildings, the Hull-Home and the Residents’ Dining Hall. These spaces were used variously over the years, including as a nursery school, a library, and a salon for social and political dialogue.
Thanks to her work with the charity home she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1931.
Addams suffered through terrible personal health throughout her life, a chronic spinal defect meant that she had to give up her studies at a young age, she intended to study medicine.
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She instead entered into charity work and eventually into politics where she became president of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom. Her dedication to peace throughout her life was in contradiction to her father’s friendship with Abraham Lincoln and his activism in the Civil War.
The Washington Post says of Addams today:
The life of Jane Addams held its share of ironic twists and social contradictions, yet the woman herself was clear and straight of purpose when it came to caring for the poor and sick and needy; seeking women’s suffrage and their greater social influence; and striving toward peaceful international relations.
Watch Google’s video about the doodle here: