A Study of Pre-Delivery Placement Facilities for the Unmarried Mother Under the Age of Eighteen Years in Area 5. The State of New York, January 1, 1952-December 31, 1952
Illegitimacy is a problem which has been in existence since the institution of marriage laws were promulgated centuries ago. Since then society has placed a stigma upon the unmarried mothers. In pagan Rome the state gave the husband the right to kill his wife as punishment for connubial unfaithfulness. This reflects the Roman respect for authority and law whether civil or moral. Christian society, concerned with the spiritual salvation of the individual, was more merciful in dealing with the problem. The sinner was forgiven but the severity of the sin was recognized. With the Reformation came the growth of religions emphasizing one or another aspect of Christ's teaching, yet drastic penalties by all churches were imposed upon the unmarried mother by curtailing ecclesiastical privileges. The State also curtailed civil privileges and often imposed physical punishment. Such treatment was detrimental as it not only caused physical hardship but also caused humiliation and loss of self respect. The harsh, intolerant treatment toward the unmarried mother and her child is summarized historically by Morlock and Campbell.
Law|Individual & family studies|Social work
Blum, Marguerite, "A Study of Pre-Delivery Placement Facilities for the Unmarried Mother Under the Age of Eighteen Years in Area 5. The State of New York, January 1, 1952-December 31, 1952" (1953). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI30557665.