Erie County was created by the State in 1800. One of the first responsibilities
it was given was the care of the poor, a state-imposed responsibility that
the county still carries. This lecture traces the evolution of the county's care
of the poor, from the creation of the Overseers of the Poor, to Institution
Districts, to workhouses, almshouses, and tuberculosis sanitariums. It notes
the changing attitudes about the treatment of subsections of the poor. It
describes the impact of the Great Depression and the Roosevelt policies, in
addition to chronicling the impact of Lyndon Johnson's 1960s programs of
Medicaid and Medicare and the scope of the current human services budget.
– Judy Lynch, Ph.D.
*This lecuture will be held at our satellite location at Edinboro University of Pennsylvania's William P. Alexander Music Center (110 Kiltie Road, Edinboro, PA 16444);
Judith Lynch, Ph.D., has been a board member of the Jefferson Educational Society since its inception and served as its first chair. From 2004 to 2017, she served as Associate Professor of Political Science and History at Mercyhurst University. From 2002 to 2004, Dr. Lynch taught at Allegheny College and was part of the Civic Engagement Institute. Prior, she worked as an analyst for the CIA and served for 20 years as Erie County Executive. She received her Doctorate With Distinction in Political Science in 2001 from the University of Pittsburgh and her M.A. in Social Studies from Gannon University. Her undergraduate degree, a B.A. in History and Political Science, is from George Washington University.