1898

Consolidation of the city's charities is recommended by businessman John W. Blodgett. He wrote, "Grand Rapids is preeminently a charitably inclined town. If a business man is approached once or twice a year only for contributions, he will give what he feels he is able, but if he is continually approached by beggars for commendable charities he will, in time, endeavor to get out of each as cheaply as he is able.  Were our charities to consolidate they would become a part of the machinery of our city."