A Child for Keeps: The History of Adoption in England, by J. Keating

By J. Keating

A baby for Keeps? considers the heritage to the expansion in approval for adoption in Britain within the early 20th century and analyzes the crusade for adoption laws. It discusses the wholesale development of unregulated adoption after the 1st legislation was once handed and the sluggish strain for safeguards and secrecy in adoption.

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Additional info for A Child for Keeps: The History of Adoption in England, 1918-45

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The NCAA was particularly influential in publicising the idea of adoption, and successful at fundraising for its activities. 14 She was born in May 1862 into a professional family in Exeter; her father Thomas was then High Bailiff of the Exeter County Court and subsequently an official at the Board of Trade, and her brothers Sidney and Henry became respectively a solicitor and surgeon. 15 It is unclear what exactly she did in the decades after that but she appears to have devoted herself energetically to ‘good works’ and committees.

They were not placed to meet the emotional needs of Canadian homes nor monitored by guardians who allowed emotional considerations to be paramount. 8 Barnardo’s and the Fairbridge Society continued to send children to Australia, and New Zealand had its own programme. 9 In the United Kingdom, prior to 1947 (when it became a registered adoption society) Barnardo’s as an organisation saw itself as the adopter, not the families with whom it sometimes boarded out children. For all intents and purposes it took for itself the custody and control of the children in its care.

3 The Salvation Army’s witness to the Hopkinson Committee in 1920, Commissioner Adelaide Cox, said that the Army had arranged about five hundred adoptions in the previous thirty years. The witness for Dr Barnardo’s, Dr Margaret Hudson, was adamant that the only form of adoption occurring through her organisation was where the foster parents with whom they had placed children grew so fond of their charges that they decided to maintain them without pay from Dr Barnardo’s, but both she and Commissioner Cox also described the wide-scale emigration of children to the colonies, mainly Canada and Australia, organised through their agencies.

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