Hidden Lives Revealed. A virtual archive - children in care 1881-1981 * Image of handwritten text

Case 9662

Case number: 9662
Application year: 1903




Year of birth: 1895
Home: St Agnes' Home For Girls, Mirfield


L. came from a poor home. Her father had been an invalid for the last 6 years of his life and her mother was very deaf and rather simple minded. The children were becoming unruly and disobedient because the mother was unable to manage them properly. It was felt necessary for L. to be removed from her home because as she grew older without firm parental control, she might face danger and temptation. The girl was admitted to St Agnes' Home, Mirfield on 12 June 1903. The bulk of correspondence in the file concerns L's life on leaving St Agnes' Home. She was discovered to be "feeble minded" and the authorities at Mirfield were anxious for her to enter a special home for girls with similar disabilities. It was hoped to avoid returning her to her family as the environment was considered morally dangerous and it was feared that she would be "ruined". Unfortunately the financial position of the Society meant that they were unable to guarantee money to maintain L. for the rest of her life (which was a requirement of many Homes for the feeble minded), and so they were in favour of letting the Poor Law authorities take care of the girl. There was some administrative difficulty in dealing with the Poor Law authorities but eventually they accepted L. as their responsibility and on 28 July 1911 she was removed by the Poor Law Guardians and transferred to a Home for the Feeble Minded in Kent.

Keywords: After care; Disability; Law; Maintenance; Neglect; Poverty; Workhouses

Items: 1. Application to Waifs and Strays' Society 23 April 1903
2. Letter from the National Association for the Feeble Minded 10 December 1909
3. Letter from Miss Stancliffe of St Agnes' Home concerning L's future 16 December [1909]
4. Note of wages of L's stepfather (included with item no.3) 22 November 1909
5. Copy letter from Revd Edward Rudolf mentioning the Poor Law authorities and the financial position of the Society 17 December 1909
6. Copy letter from Revd Edward Rudolf to the National Association for the Feeble Minded 17 December 1909
7. Copy letter to Miss Stancliffe pointing out difficulties with her proposals for L's future 28 December 1909
8. Postcard from Miss Stancliffe mentioning L. 14 January [1910]
9. Letter from the National Association for the Feeble Minded offering a place at a Home in Leicester 19 January 1910
10. Copy letter from Revd Edward Rudolf refusing the place 21 January 1910
11. Postcard from Miss Stancliffe 21 January 1910
12. Postcard from Miss Stancliffe 29 January 1910
13. Copy letter from Revd Edward Rudolf enquiring about the progress of L's case 4 April 1910
14. Letter from Miss Stancliffe detailing the administrative problems she has encountered dealing with the Poor Law Authorities 6 April 1910
15. Copy letter from Revd Edward Rudolf setting out a particular course of action regarding the Poor Law authorities 9 April 1910
16. Postcard from Miss Stancliffe about her attempts to get the Poor Law Guardians to take up L's case 11 April 1910
17. Copy letter to the Diocesan Secretary, Colonel Peirse asking him to accelerate the handing over of L. to the Poor Law Authorities 20 June 1910
18. Letter from Colonel Peirse reporting on the progress of L's case and saying that problems exist with L's mother's consent 6 July 1910
19. Letter from Miss Stancliffe reporting that the Guardians have accepted L's case and the parents consent has been obtained 28 August 1910
20. Copy letter of thanks from Revd Edward Rudolf 30 August 1910
21. Extract from a letter from Miss Stancliffe concerning L. 30 September 1910
22. Letter from Miss Stancliffe giving details of the final outcome of L's case 29 July 1911
23. Notice of discharge 31 July 1911

The Children's Society UNESCO logo Big
           Lottery Fund logo Wellcome Trust