Annenberg / Collection News / Van Pelt

Records of the Children’s Bureau, 1912-1969, online from ProQuest History Vault

Records of the Children’s Bureau, 1912-1969, the administrative files of the U.S. Children’s Bureau are an important collection of primary material for the study of the family and the health and wellbeing of children in the twentieth century, now available to Penn readers on ProQuest’s History Vault platform.

Materials in this online collection, from the first federal agency dedicated entirely to protecting the welfare of children and families include reports, speeches, correspondence, radio scripts, brochures, bills and laws, court hearings, newspaper and magazine clippings, and research materials from the Children’s Bureau staff. The collection falls into six general groups: Children’s Bureau history; Children’s Bureau Chief’s files; Children’s Bureau Merritt files (the reference file of Ella Arvilla Merritt relating to federal control of child labor, 1913-1939); Child welfare; Child legislation; Maternal and child health.

The documents of Records of the Children’s Bureau, 1912-1969 enable researchers to trace the various stages of Federal involvement in the welfare of children and the development of family law, and they also throw a fascinating light on the way welfare policies affected ordinary women.

This primary source collection was digitized by ProQuest from a microfilm set produced by Chadwyck-Healy, 1988, from original files at the National Archives, held there as Record Group 102.

The finding aid for the microfilm set, digitized by the Center for Research Libraries, is useful for understanding the contents and arrangement of the ProQuest History Vault digitized collection:

Records of the Children’s Bureau, 1912-1969 is complemented by two large Children’s Bureau publication series, freely available in digitized format (and downloadable to Penn readers):

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