Explore the history of American social reform and social services 

The Social Welfare History Image Portal brings together photographs, pamphlets, artifacts and documents chronicling the history of the nation's response to human need. This history includes the work of volunteer organizations, reform movements, social workers, and government legislation and systems.

Featured Items

Father Forgive them for they know not what they do / Educate Don't Segregate [1963 Farmville, Va. protests]

VCU_Rev Goodwin Douglas Clara Gibson Main St Farmville July 1963 rsz.jpg [View Image]

Protesters in front of Prince Edward County Courthouse, Main St., Farmville, Va., July 1963.The Rev. Goodwin Douglas, pastor of Beulah AME, with…

Bethany Home for Friendless Children, Chesterfield, VA

Valentine_BethanyHome_Cook Collection rsz.jpg [View Image]

Lucy and J. R. F. Burroughs founded the Bethany Home for Friendless Children in 1894. The childless couple established the orphanage on their 165-acre…

March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom [publicity flyer]

Union PSem_Flyer March on Washington005 rsz.jpg [View Image]

The March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom took place on 28 August 1963. An estimated 250,000 people attended the massive, peaceful rally, while…