(Please click to enlarge)
In 1942 a Post-Intelligencer photographer visited what were the three centers for a charitable institution then still called Seattle Day Nursery. The two branches opened in 1925 in West Seattle and in the Cascade Neighborhood, the latter on a lot later razed for the Seattle Freeway. The main branch was housed in a pleasing brick home built for it in 1921 here at the six star corner of Boren, Broadway and Alder on Capitol Hill.
The children tipping their cups in the historical view are all “clients,” some – maybe most – of them from homes where father is off to war and mother working on the home front, perhaps at Boeing. In ’42 Seattle Day Nursery was 33 years old and still run by volunteers until 1959 when a professional staff was hired. All the children in Jean’s “repeat” belong to staff members of Childhaven, the name for the day nursery since 1985.
This is the institution’s Centennial year. It began in 1909 in the basement of the First Presbyterian Church as a way of helping mostly single mothers who needed to do paying work during the day. It developed into an activist advocate for the youngest among us who were born to abusive parents who themselves were often repeating a cycle of abuse put on them by their parents.
The philosophical, inventive, persuasive, and dogged Patrick L. Gogerty became the institution’s director in 1973, and used his own abused childhood as a source of both wisdom and compassion in guiding Childhaven into its new mission of “breaking the cycle of abuse and neglect.” For Childhaven’s next one hundred years Goberty advices “Support it. Nurture it. Love it. Just like you do with kids.”
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