Orphan Trains: The Story of Charles Loring Brace and the Children He Saved and Failed

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University of Chicago Press, Mar 1, 2004 - Family & Relationships - 362 pages
13 Reviews
In mid-nineteenth-century New York, vagrant youth, both orphans and runaways, filled the streets. For years the city had been sweeping these children into prisons or almshouses, but in 1853 the young minister Charles Loring Brace proposed a radical solution to the problem by creating the Children's Aid Society, an organization that fought to provide homeless children with shelter, education, and, for many, a new family in the country. Combining a biography of Brace with firsthand accounts of orphans, Stephen O'Connor here tells of the orphan trains that, between 1854 and 1929, spirited away some 250,000 destitute children to rural homes in every one of the forty-eight contiguous states.

A powerful blend of history, biography, and adventure, Orphans Trains remains the definitive work on this little-known episode in American history.
  

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - tloeffler - LibraryThing

Several months ago, the MO Readers read a short book about the orphan trains in Missouri, and we thought we'd like to know more, so we read this one. Although it barely touched on Missouri, some of ... Read full review

Review: Orphan Trains: The Story of Charles Loring Brace and the Children He Saved and Failed

User Review  - Writer's Relief - Goodreads

In the first half of the 19th century, immigrants flooded our eastern shores. The population of New York City went from 33,000 in 1790 to more than 500,000; by 1890 it was close to 1.5 million. And it ... Read full review

Contents

John Brady and Harry Morris
3
The Good Father
5
Flood of Humanity
32
DOING
65
John Jackson
67
City Missionary
71
Draining the City Saving the Children
83
Journey to Dowagiac
94
REDOING
203
Lotte Stern
205
Invisible Children
209
Neglect of the Poor
233
The Trials of Charley Miller
258
The Death and Life of Charles Loring Brace
284
Legacy
310
NOTES
331

A Voice Among the Newsboys
116
Happy Circle
148
Almost a Miracle
177

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About the author (2004)

Stephen O'Connor teaches creative writing at Columbia University and Sarah Lawrence College. He is the author of Will My Name Be Shouted Out?, an account of his years teaching creative writing at an inner-city school in New York, and a collection of short fiction, Rescue.

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