Florence Walrath

Florence Walrath
Following her sister’s experience with infertility, Florence Walrath (1877-1958) founded The Cradle adoption agency in 1923.  At the time, adoption facilities had not changed much since the 19th Century.  Walrath and The Cradle became leaders in the effort to dignify adoption and improve the quality of child care in these agencies. She and her staff developed new methods of care, including sterile conditions and safe powdered formula for babies, and offered counseling for both birth and adoptive parents. The Cradle remains an internationally recognized leader in the field.

4 thoughts on “Florence Walrath”

  1. Janet McDonald

    I am currently a member of The Cradle’s board of directors. Florence Walrath had a knack for involving the community in her innovative ideas and was able to build an institution that has placed more than 14,500 children in permanent families. She would be so proud that the marvelous institution she founded 87 years ago has evolved with the times and continued to thrive in Evanston!

  2. margaret Ann shirley

    I will always be grateful to Florence Walrath and everyone associated with The Cradle for choosing my former husband, Peter Louderback, and myself as adoptive parents for John Gunther Louderback, who was born on Christmas Day, 1960. He has been “the light of our life” ever since.

  3. Sue Wallace Collins

    I had the pleasure of knowing Mrs. Walrath as a child. I, too, had the good fortune to be born under her care and then adopted by the fantastic duo of Alfred K. Collins and Elizabeth L. Collins of Evanston.

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