Legacies: A History Journal for Dallas and North Central Texas, Volume 13, Number 2, Fall, 2001 Page: 19
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To SAVE THE BABIES
Blanche Greenburg and the Milk Stations
he consequences of huge numbers of
people moving into American cities at
the end of the nineteenth century have
been well documented. Whether they arrived
from abroad or moved from farms, the results
were the same: the cities were overwhelmed by
their numbers and couldn't keep up with residents'
need for basic services. Many people, especially
the urban poor, had to struggle to feed,
clothe, and house their families.1 Though the citizens
of Dallas took pride in the growth of their
city at the turn of the century, Dallas had not
escaped many of the problems found in other
major cities across the country. It was the women
of Dallas who led efforts to clean up the city,
improve its food, drug and water supply, its parks,
and its schools, and care for the neediest people
in the city.2 The Infants' Milk and Welfare
Association was one of the organizations established
to help the children of Dallas whose parents
could not afford to feed them properly or
seek professional medical treatment. Blanche
Cahn Greenburg, the woman responsible for its
creation, focused her considerable powers of persuasion
on key leaders in the city to make the
IMWA a reality. But who was she and why did
she devote her time and energy to such a simple
thing as milk for children?
Blanche Cahn Greenburg was born in New
Orleans in I879, but before she was two, the family
moved to Corpus Christi. They moved on to
Laredo within a few years, where family members
say Samuel Cahn was in the mercantile
business. Samuel died at age 47 of tuberculosis,
and Blanche's mother, Betty Amelia Levy Cahn,
Blanche and Henry Greenburg
and her three children returned to New Orleans,
where the children grew up and finished high
school.3 Blanche returned to Texas in I905,
following her marriage to Rabbi William
H. Greenburg of Temple Emanu-El. Rabbi
Greenburg, who had been born in London, had
been elected to his Dallas position in I90o.4
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Dallas Historical Society. Legacies: A History Journal for Dallas and North Central Texas, Volume 13, Number 2, Fall, 2001, periodical, 2001; (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth35099/m1/21/: accessed January 23, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Dallas Historical Society.