Jane Addams known as the “mother” of social work, was a pioneer American settlement activist/reformer, social worker, public philosopher, sociologist, author and leader in women’s suffrage and world peace. She co-founded, with Ellen Gates Starr, an early settlement house in the United States, Chicago’s Hull House that would later become known as one of the most famous settlement houses in America.
In an era when presidents such as Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson identified themselves as reformers and social activists, Addams was one of the most prominent reformers of the Progressive Era.
She helped America address and focus on issues that were of concern to mothers, such as the needs of children, local public health and world peace. In her essay “Utilization of Women in City Government, ”Jane Addams noted the connection between the workings of government and the household, stating that many departments of government, such as sanitation and the schooling of children, could be traced back to traditional women’s roles in the private sphere.