Statement on Recreation Piers, April 11, 1909 (excerpt)


Miss Jane Addams Gives Views.

Miss Jane Addams of Hull house made her explanation of the needs for the piers more general than did Mayor Busse, but she did not disagree with him on his major point -- the babies.

"There are so many, many people who would be benefited by such opportunities for recreation," she said. "First of all, of course, we must consider the babes, the sick little ones and their mothers, but there also are the invalids, the old people, and the young people -- in fact, everybody.

"The fresh air and the cool shade of covered piers running out into the lake would be found by all of them. If they were within easy access from all the congested districts at a minimum expense I am sure the piers would be crowed all the time.

"In the afternoons there would be the mother and their babies, and then in the evening would come the tired workingmen and the young people. There are too few such places for both of these classes now. Their methods of seeking rest and pleasure often have bad effects. I foresee a great improvement as a result of the building of recreation piers."

Amusement for Children.

Miss Addams offered a suggestion that the piers should have a limited amount of equipment for the amusement of children.

"In New York the piers are a success," she explained, "and there they have a few swings and things of that sort. I believe they would be of advantage here. The lake shore should be made more attractive for all our people. It should take them away from the dusty buildings and streets more than it does. I hope to see the day when there will be several large recreation piers along the late front."

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