Saturday, November 09, 2013

Living on Halsted St

In those early days we were often asked why we had come to live on Halsted Street when we could afford to live somewhere else.  I remember one man who used to shake his head and say it was "the strangest thing he had met in his experience," but who was finally convinced that it was "not strange but natural."  In time it came to seem natural to all of us that the Settlement should be there.  If it is natural to feed the hungry and care for the sick, it is certainly natural to give pleasure to the young, comfort to the aged, and to minister to the deep-seated craving for social intercourse that all men feel.  Whoever does it is rewarded by something which, if not gratitude, is at least spontaneous and vital and lacks that irksome sense of obligation which which a substantial benefit is too often acknowledged.

Jane AddamsTwenty Years at Hull-House
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