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Learned from Our Neighbors: 

Stories from The Elizabeth Peabody House

Welcome to a digital exhibit celebrating social worker Eva Whiting White, the Elizabeth Peabody House, and life in Boston's West End. This website is the product of a digital humanities project by a group of students at Simmons University.

Eva Whiting White

A pioneer in the field of social work, Eva Whiting White was the first graduate from Simmons University's School of Social Work in 1907. She then went on to be the head worker and director of the Elizabeth Peabody House for over 30 years.


Click below to learn more about Eva and her work with the Elizabeth Peabody House.

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A Portrait of Boston's West End

The West End was a historic, multi-ethnic neighborhood that was demolished to make room for well-known Boston landmarks such as Mass General Hospital and the elevated railroad. The neighborhood was labeled a slum and destroyed in the late 1950s and early 1960s.

Click down below to learn more about the neighborhood.

The Elizabeth Peabody House

The Elizabeth Peabody House was a simple brick building in Boston’s West End. While it was unassuming from the outside, inside was a community teeming with activities and life.

Click down below to learn more about the history of the Peabody House.


Activities at the Peabody House

The main way the house accomplished its goals was through a rigorous schedule of programming for the residents of the West End. All of the programs strove to nurture community and engagement with fellow neighbors.

Click down below to learn more about the programs at the Peabody House.

Unless otherwise noted, all materials in this exhibit are from the Eva Whiting White papers, Simmons University Archives Manuscript Collection 022.  The images and text on this web site are made available for study purposes only. They may not be reproduced in any form without prior written permission from the Simmons University Archives.  For more information, please contact the University Archives at

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