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Miss Briggs has no intention of increasing her household further. If more nurseships are endowed, she will open a new cottage in another congested district and have the benefits of two homes, rather than of one larger institution.
In viewing the result of Miss Briggs's work, one must consider
WOMEN'S SEWING CIRCLE.
the character of the people among whom she dwells. The nursing necessarily extends in all directions and to all people of need. The most intimate social relations are with the neighbors on her block, numbering over two hundred families. These people are mostly respectable, and disorderly characters are not welcomed to their midst. All are of the lowest wage-earning class and live from pay-day to
pay-day. Some families of eight crowd into three small rooms, and a number receive help from established charities. There is nothing of the abject squalor that we hear of in the larger eastern cities, for the California climate, demanding less fuel and less clothing, and allowing more regular work, makes life easier for the laborer.
When Miss Briggs first went among them, from the Associated Charities, she found that many people who accepted the nurse from an institution expected further help from it, as coal, food, clothing, and rent; and they had a slightly supercilious bearing toward its servant, the nurse. Since she has gone simply as a friend, ready to help, but with no financial reserve behind her, she has been received in a better spirit, and the people, instead of losing their independence, seem anxious to return what service they can.
On her block the improvement is noticeable. While the street was scheduled by the Merchants' Exchange to be swept once a week, sometimes over a month elapsed without it being touched. Miss Briggs interviewed the right people until the street-sweeping department was forced to live up to its agreements. Now she has the office telephone her just what evening the street is to be swept-for the department has not yet reached the perfection of regularity-and she warns all the neighbors in time to sweep their sidewalks before the machine appears. The front windows have boxes and pots of geraniums and begonias, "because they look so nice in Miss Briggs's window." Seldom now is a woman caught gossiping at her door with bare arms and hair unkempt. Whereas four years ago the children dropped out of school shortly after the term commenced, because it was too much trouble for the mothers to get them ready, now it is considered a social offense to have a child absent unless ill. One might question: Is her house, with its cultured refinement, just as helpful to them as one whose art was at the stage they could introduce into their own homes ? The answer, it seems to me, should be in the affirmative; because her home is sincerely part of herself, just as her work is. She has the same. treasures around her on Tehama street that she would have in a home on California street. She lives on Tehama street because her life-work lies in that district. No attempt is made in her home to reduce her style of service to one that the neighbors could reach. She lives sincerely, as she is accustomed to, and lets the spirit of her life have its effect.
The support of this home is by subscriptions from some of the best thinkers in San Francisco and vicinity, from people who are satisfied to have their money work good without receiving printed reports. Miss Fanny Doyle, of Menlo Park, is secretary and treasurer, and by her untiring zeal makes the work possible. It may be remarked here that this young woman, coming into the work at first merely to furnish the finances, has assisted so much with the practical nursing that now she is as able to cope with most cases as is a graduate from a hospital. As the scope has increased, the need of more funds has become apparent.
The fact that no subscriber has as yet either reduced or withdrawn his allowance is a proof of their appreciation of the The woman who has furnished the work in this its fourth year.
two extra nurses is one of the original subscribers, and still continues her monthly subscription to the general house fund. Miss Briggs receives only her mere living-her board and lodging – The two from the funds; even her clothes come outside of it. other nurses receive a salary and pay their board into the house fund.
One of the greatest evidences of the faith of those who know the work and who have means to assist it has been in providing In 1900, funds for a summer cottage for convalescent children. a picturesque, sheltered town across the a home at San Rafaelbay from San Francisco—was rented for August and September. Miss Briggs and Louise went over to manage the cottage, leaving others in charge at Tehama street. Only twelve children could be accommodated at a time, but during the two months thirtysix little ones were given a chance to recuperate in the country air. Some remained the entire time; others, one, two, or three All rejoiced in the weeks, as Miss Briggs deemed necessary. freedom, the warmth, the trees-some of which actually bore fruit; the pure milk-eight whole gallons a day; the hills; the bathing at the shore; and the kindness of the people of San Rafael. In fact, everything was a source of congratulation, and every boy and girl returned to the city feeling that this is a Visitors to the summer home very beautiful world to live in. remarked the lovely spirit of the children there. The stronger helped the weak; the older cared for the young; all were cheerful and thoughtful; and the only cloud was that the summer home could not be open always. One San Rafael matron was so favorably impressed that she offered to support the home three months during 1901, and this brought back health to one hundred children. During the summer of 1902 Miss Briggs herself was away on a much-needed vacation, and a summer cottage was not opened. It is hoped to have a country cottage open the whole year through, where children can be sent at any time, and where
vegetables, poultry, and eggs can be produced for the Tehama street house.
The success of Miss Briggs's work has proved it a practical venture along humanitarian lines. It is in no way a rival of "settlement" work, but proceeds along with it, offering the more intimate home influence rather than the wider institutional relations.
KATHERINE A. CHANDLER.
THE CRADLE OF THE TRUST.
We look to the political parties and the legislatures for remedies against every social ill. We are apt to forget the fact that political parties and persons, in the nature of things, are more or less demagogic, more or less inclined to flatter their constituents by the assertion that enactment of a law is sufficient medicine for the complaint, while the truth that hard, incessant work eternal vigilance—is the only satisfactory remedy is overlooked or forgotten. We are forgetting that it is necessary, whenever important topics are under debate, to let the politicians' flattery pass by unnoticed, and instead of listening examine into our own -the nation's, the people's, the citizens'-responsibility as above and below the political struggle, to see if no serious defects there ought to be repaired before we can take time to listen to the stump speeches calling upon the federal government for treatment.
The trust, the all-absorbing social and political topic of our time, appears as a climax of our Anglo-Saxon individualism, social and industrial, and our efforts must therefore naturally be directed toward a regulation of this individualism, or its effects, in cases where these conflict with the interests of the people at large. Other nations also, outside the Anglo-Saxon world, have to contend with this same problem, but in a form less grave than ours. Their scant political freedom, their more communistic and less individualistic social conditions, have made it possible for them, less distracted as they are by political agitation, to follow the economical evolution with a keener sense of its importance as a base for the national life, and to support this evolution with constructive technical appurtenances when deemed necessary or desirable.
As the social value of the man, the individual, is, higher in this than in any other country, and as this worth may be supposed to furnish the individual with a personal feeling of power, with practically unlimited field of work, it is but natural to con