Academic journal article Journal of Correctional Education

Correctional Education Historical Vignettes

Academic journal article Journal of Correctional Education

Correctional Education Historical Vignettes

Article excerpt

Austin MacCormick-Professional Networking Exemplar

Austin MacCormick burst on the scene in 1915, working on his master's thesis on prison reform at Bowdoin College. He contacted the famous prison reformer Thomas Mott Osborne (TMO), who had democratized Sing Sing and several other maximum security facilities. For a month Osborne and MacCormick went "undercover" as Maine State Prison inmates. Their subsequent report attracted attention to prison reform in the U.S. Senate. The Osborne/MacCormick team worked closely until TMO died in 1926.

In 1927 MacCormick obtained a grant from the Carnegie Corporation to the National Society of Penal Information (NSPI-now known as the Osborne Association, Inc.), which he leveraged for support from the Adult Education Association. These funds enabled him to implement the first nationwide study of prison libraries and prison education. In 1927-28 MacCormick visited 110 of the 114 prisons in the country; in 1930 he established the organization that later became the CEA, and in 1937 he founded what later became the Journal of Correctional Education. MacCormick established an NSPl Board of Directors that included Charles Osborne as president, George Kirchway (a TMO ally at Sing Sing, then a New York School of Social Work professor), and himself. The NSPI Advisory Board included such luminaries as (a) Hull House founder and later Nobel Prize winner Jane Addams, (b) criminologist Harry Elmer Barnes, (c) Franklin Delano Roosevelt, (d) Massachusetts Commissioner of Correction Sanford Bates, (e) Jessie Hodder, Superintendent of the Massachusetts Reformatory for Women, (f) professor David Snedden of Columbia University-an expert on what local school teachers could learn from correctional educators, and (g) Lithgow Osborne. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.