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East Side House, New York City

East Side House Settlement, New York City

Note: East Side House, founded in 1891, has served the Mott Haven section of the Bronx since 1963. A staff of 281, including full and part-time teachers, social workers and other experts serve approximately 8,000 residents from 17 locations. After-school and evening programs serve nearly 1,500 children age 2-17.

The following portion of the entry is copied from the HANDBOOK OF SETTLEMENTS, a national survey of settlements published in 1911 by The Russell Sage Foundation of New York. This collection of detailed information about settlements operating in 1910 was collected, organized and written by two settlement pioneers: Robert Archey Woods and Albert J. Kennedy. This excerpt is an extraordinary record of social welfare history because it describes in some detail the early years of development of programs and activities conducted by the forerunner of today’s East Side House.

East Side House

540 East Seventy-sixth Street. Boys’ Camp, Delaware Water Gap

Established June, 1891, by the Church Club (Episcopal) and incorporated June, 1891. The work at first was largely for men and boys, but was extended in 1896 to include girls and women. In 1907 many of the Alumni of the City College of New York undertook to be contributors to the house, with the idea of eventually taking over its support.

Neighborhood. The upper East Side. The population, originally of Irish and German extraction, has become Slavic since 1901.

Activities. In 1891 opened kindergarten; established a playground on the river bank, provided swings, a summer house, etc. Erected (1893) a special building to house a circulating library of five thousand volumes offered by the New York Free Circulating Library Association, and maintained this work with extraordinary efficiency and in the most social and co-operative spirit until the erection of a large branch library in 1903. In 1895 the playground was extended to the river and a tidal bathing basin provided. In 1896 the Winifred Wheeler Day Nursery and an interesting co-operative experiment known as the “Cooperative Householding Society,” the stock of which is in part held by members of the men’s club, was started. Their house on 77th Street has been well kept and the experiment made financially successful. Through the efforts of the settlement the John Jay Park and playground was located opposite, and in 1903 a public bath was placed next the playground. Long continued efforts to keep up the sanitary condition of the district, working largely through its men’s and civic clubs. Politically these organizations have stood for the better candidates, and the Fellow Citizenship Association in 1900-1 played a helpful part in securing a plurality in the city election for Mr. Low. Started as a men’s house, has always been specially noted for its large number of men’s organizations.

Maintains day nursery; savings; kindergarten; music school; dramatic association; gymnasium and athletic association and clubs; debating societies; glee clubs; clubs for men, women, young people and children with various interests; classes in piano, violin, singing, and domestic sciences; public lectures (co-operation with city); concerts, dances, etc. Summer Work.—Day nursery; clubs; picnics; excursions and camp.

Residents. Women 3, men 8. Volunteers. Women 9, men 5. Head Residents. Everett P. Wheeler, Summer, 1891; Franklin W. Brush, 1891-1892; Willis B. Holcombe, 1891-1894; Clarence Gordon, 1894-Jan., 1903; William T. Kelly, Feb., 1903-1907; Miss M. De G. Trenholm, 1908-.

Literature. I. Authorized Statements. Annual reports, issued January 1 -— East Side Club reports, pamphlets and circulars, to be obtained at East Side House — East Side House Bulletin, a bi-weekly leaflet — Betts, Lillian W.: New York’s Social Settlements (East Side House). Outlook, li : 684 (Apr. 27, 1895) — “Neighhorhood,” a monthly magazine: Vol. I, No. 1, Jan., 1908; Vol. II, No. 1, Oct., 1908; Vol. Ill, No. 1, May, 1909; Vol. IV, No. 1, Jan., 1910. See also: Social Settlements. Bureau of Labor Statistics State of New York. Eighteenth Annual Report, 1900. Part II, pp. 313-322 — The East Side House Settlement. Commons, Feb., 1897 — The East Side House Settlement. Commons, Oct. 31, 1899 — The East Side House Settlement. Commons, Dec, 1901 — The East Side House Settlement. Commons, vi, No. 68, March, 1902 — Opening of the New East Side House. Charities, x : 331-332 (Apr. 4, 1903) — East Side House. Charities, xii : 196-197 (Feb. 20, 1904) — East Side House. Commons, x : 122-123 (Feb., 1905). II. Articles By Residents Or Directors. Gordon, Clarence: The Relation of the Church to the Settlement. Commons, Nov., 1897. The Meaning of a Settlement. Charities, ix : 543 (Dec. 6, 1902) — Wheeler, Everett P.: The Settlement in Its Relation to Organized Social Work. Churchman, Aug. 12, 1893; Outlook, Feb. 10, 1894.

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