Mother's Pension Law

From Ohio History Central

In 1913, the Ohio state legislature enacted a number of important Progressive reforms, including a Mother's Pension Law.

Progressives were concerned about the negative effects of such forces as industrialization, immigration, and urbanization. These reformers were concerned that, when women were left to raise children if their husbands died or abandoned the family, children did not receive the attention that they needed to grow into moral, responsible citizens. To prevent women from having to work outside the home while their children were young, a mother's pension was created. The pension came from the county treasuries. Mothers originally received fifteen dollars a month for the first child and seven dollars a month for each additional child. Once a child reached the legal age for employment, the payment ceased.

During the 1910s, numerous states enacted Mother's Pension Laws. While Illinois was the first state to do so in the Midwest, other states in this region, including Ohio, soon followed suit.

See Also


  1. Hofstadter, Richard. The Age of Reform: From Bryan to F.D.R. New York, NY: Vintage Books, 1960.  
  2. Hofstadter, Richard. The Progressive Movement, 1900-1915. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1963.  
  3. McGerr, Michael. A Fierce Discontent: The Rise and Fall of the Progressive Movement in America, 1870-1920. New York, NY: Free Press, 2003.