Pauline (Agassiz) Shaw was the guiding spirit and considered the founder of this trade school and settlement house in Boston's North End. Founded in 1879 to provide a means of self-help for the poor, the North End Industrial Home first established a sewing room managed and staffed mainly by women for women. In 1885 the school was incorporated under its present name to serve the surrounding immigrant community, which after 1900 was mainly Italian. It aimed to help the immigrants become citizens and improve their economic conditions. In addition to the sewing room, the School offered other vocational courses for children and adults, a day nursery and Play School for Habit Training, a library, clubs, outings, pageants, summer camps, a credit union, and an industrial training program. For many years it provided vocational training to Boston public school students, sponsoring such industries as lighting fixtures and lead garden ornaments which it sold in its Industrial Arts Shop. Vocational guidance and placement were initiated before WWI but were emphasized particularly during the Depression, when the School helped run a work relief program for the unemployed. After both world wars the School participated in government programs to train veterans and handicapped persons, and it has been active in civic improvement projects in the North End. It attracts students from all over the U.S., and is affiliated with the United Way (formerly the Boston Council of Social Agencies).
Early superintendents of the School were women. In 1909, Alvin E. Dodd became director, and after him George Courtright Greener, a potter from Columbus, Ohio, succeeded in 1954 by Ernest Jacoby. The school has had an active Board of Managers that has included many prominent Bostonians.
From the description of Records, 1880-1973 (inclusive). (Harvard University). WorldCat record id: 232006788