The first state law against animal cruelty was passed in 1828. The state was:
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) was founded by Henry Bergh in:
The 1874 case of Mary Ellen McCormack, an abused child, was brought to court by Bergh and the ASPCA because:
Child protection laws were very limited in the U.S. at that time. Bergh argued that the child should at least have the same rights as an animal.
Bergh was looking for publicity.
Bergh was a soft touch.
Bergh was paid to help with the case.
Bergh was approached by an old family friend to help.
Caroline Earle White was a lifelong activist who founded the Women’s Humane Society in Bensalem, PA in 1869. Among other things, she:
Helped start the American Anti-Vivisection Society (AAVS) in 1883.
Founded and edited an animal welfare journal.
Took over the Philadelphia pound and reopened it under more humane guidelines.
All of these things.
Marched humane education into the Pennsylvania public AND parochial schools.
Lawyer and criminologist George Thorndike Angell founded the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (MSPCA) in 1868. He was galvanized into action by:
Reading Anna Sewell’s novel "Black Beauty."
Witnessing a bullfight while in Spain.
Rescuing an abused dog.
Seeing a cart horse being beaten on the street.
Witnessing 2 horses being run to death over rough roads during a race.
By 1907, every state had anti-cruelty statutes. By 1922, 20 states required:
Humane education in the schools.
Concrete floors and strict hygiene in animal shelters and pounds.
The abolition of live pigeons in shooting matches.
Humane treatment of horses and other farm animals.
Inspection of slaughterhouses.
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