Reform Movement for the Mentally Ill and Disabled

dix"The pretty woman who stood before the all-male audience seemed unlikely to provoke controversy. Tiny and timid, she rose to the platform of the Massachusetts Legislature to speak. Those who had underestimated the determination and dedication of Dorothea Dix, however, were brought to attention when they heard her say that the sick and insane were "confined in this Commonwealth in cages, closets, cellars, stalls, pens! Chained, beaten with rods, lashed into obedience." Thus, her crusade for humane hospitals for the insane, which she began in 1841, was reaching a climax. After touring prisons, workhouses, almshouses, and private homes to gather evidence of appalling abuses, she made her case for state-supported care. Ultimately, she not only helped establish five hospitals in America, but also went to Europe where she successfully pleaded for human rights to Queen Victoria and the Pope."

Progressive Movement - This website is a great overview of the time when most reform movements took place. It will help you understand the context of the movements and also give you some insight into their success or failure. A great place to get some ideas for icons to use. (Note the orange tabs at the top which have links to useful information.)

Excellent sources available from Mr. McVay
Mental Illness - Encyclopedia Americana, Vol. 18 (1984) Research section—pg. 704-705
Mental Disability - Encyclopedia Americana, Vol. 18 (1984) ----Historical background pg. 705-708

Other sources to try: