Skip to main content

Give Now

Eras in Social Welfare History


Social welfare policy and programs in America have roots going back to early Colonial days.

Use the drop-down menu to locate articles related to the following time periods. Some entries may appear in more than one time period, as historical periods overlap and events or issues may persist over multiple eras.


Colonial and Post-Revolutionary America (approx. 1600-1800)

The Antebellum Period (approx. 1800-1860)

The Civil War, Reconstruction, and Progressivism (approx. 1870-1914)

World War I and the 1920s (1914-1929)

The Great Depression (approx. 1930-1940)

World War II and the 1950s (approx. 1941-1955)

The Civil Rights Era

The War on Poverty

The 1970s and Beyond


View graphic versionView graphic version