dorothea dix crusader for the mentally ill

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Dorothea Lynde Dix was born in Hampden, Maine on April 4, 1802 to Joseph and Mary Dix. Her parents called her Dolly as a child. Over the course of her career she had several professions including author, teacher, lobbyist, and superintendent of nurses during the civil war however, she became best known as a social reformer who dedicated much of her life to the mentally ill and those in prison (Brown, 1998).


While there, at the age of only 14, she organized her own school and taught neighborhood children. At the age of 19, she moved back to her Grandmothers home in Boston and started a second formal school for older children she named "The Hope," which catered primarily to poor children of the area. As a creative and caring thinker, she wrote a book for children entitled Conversations on Common Things (Brown, 1998). The school was forced to close when Dorothy became seriously ill and during her convalescence over the next two years, she continued with her writing including Hymns for Children and American Moral Tales for Young Persons (Gollaher, 1995).
In 1830, Dorothea was engaged by Reverend William Ellery Channing and his wife to be a tutor and governess for their children. She traveled with the family to the Virgin Islands and stayed for nearly a year. Upon returning to Boston, she opened another school in the same location as "The Hope" school. However, within a few years, she became seriously ill with tuberculosis and was forced to retire from teaching in order to rest and recover. ...
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