Boys Town (organization)
Father Flanagan's Boys' Home
|Location||Boys Town, Nebraska|
|Architect||Daly, Leo A., Construction|
|Architectural style||Tudor Revival, Other|
|NRHP Reference #||85002439|
|Added to NRHP||February 4, 1985|
|Designated NHL||February 4, 1985|
Boys Town, formerly Girls and Boys Town and Father Flanagan's Boys' Home, is a non-profit organization dedicated to caring for its children and families, with national headquarters in the village of Boys Town, Nebraska. The property was listed on the National Register of Historic Places and was designated as a National Historic Landmark on February 4, 1985.
Boys Town was founded in December 1917, as an orphanage for boys, then called the "City of Little Men". It was founded by Edward J. Flanagan, a Roman Catholic priest working in Omaha, Nebraska at that time. "The 'City of Little Men' pioneered and developed new juvenile care methods in twentieth-century America, emphasizing social preparation as a model for public boys' homes worldwide."
In 1943, Boys Town adopted as its image and logo a picture of a boy carrying a younger boy on his back, captioned "He ain't heavy, Father, he's my brother." They felt it epitomized the importance of their residents caring for each other and having someone care about them. The saying inspired a song and album by The Hollies.
Boys Town has grown over the years; providing care to children and families across the country. Boys Town's national headquarters is located at the Village of Boys Town in Nebraska. There are 12 regional headquarters across the United States. They are located in California, Central Florida, North Florida, South Florida, Louisiana, Nebraska, Iowa, New England New York, Nevada, Texas, and Washington, D.C.
Facilities include the Hall of History, dedicated to the history of Boys Town, the restored home of Father Flanagan, the Dowd Memorial Chapel and the Chambers Protestant Chapel, and the Leon Myers Stamp Center. The latter provides historical stamp collecting exhibits and sells donated stamps to provide support for Boys Town programs. It has a summer camp on West Lake Okoboji, located near West Okoboji, Iowa.
In popular culture
- The 1938 movie called Boys Town features actor Spencer Tracy portraying Flanagan. It also starred Mickey Rooney, Henry Hull and Gene Reynolds and its sequel, Men of Boys Town (1941) also featured Tracy and Rooney.
- National Park Service (2007-01-23). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
- "Father Flanagan's Boys' Home". National Historic Landmark summary listing. National Park Service. Retrieved 2008-06-27.
- Colverd, Sue; Hodgkin, Bernard (2011). Developing Emotional Intelligence in the Primary School. Routledge. p. 153. Retrieved 4 July 2016.
- Williams, Andy (13 July 2015). "He Ain't Heavy Boys Town's Chris and Lori Mathsen". omahamagazine.com. Retrieved 4 July 2016.
- "Saving Children and Healing Families Across America/Locations". boystown.org. Retrieved 4 July 2016.
- "Visit the Village". boystown.org. Retrieved 4 July 2016.
- Boys Town official site
- Case studies of Boys Town, Mackinac Center for Public Policy
- William J Kozersky Stamp Company commercial site with pictures of Boys Town Christmas and Spring Seals by year.
- NEBRASKA: Boys Town Bonanza, TIME, Apr. 10, 1972
- Education: Rebuilding Boys Town, TIME, Aug. 05, 1974