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Reading Comprehension Worksheets
Women's History
The Civil War

Dorothea Dix

Women's History
Women's History

Dorothea Dix
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Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   high interest, readability grades 4 to 6
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   4.65

     challenging words:    insane, superintendent, testimony, alcoholic, tuberculosis, mentally, publicly, depression, born, sane, legislature, poorly, gain, thoughts, volunteer, adult
     content words:    Dorothea Dix, Mississippi River, Civil War, New Jersey

Other Languages
     Spanish: Dorothea Dix

Dorothea Dix
By Cathy Pearl

1     Dorothea Dix was born on April 4, 1802, in Maine. She was the oldest of three children. Dorothea did not have a good childhood. Her father was an alcoholic. Her mother suffered from depression. It was not a happy place to grow up.
2     She was a school teacher as a young adult. It wasn't until she was thirty-nine that she started the career that she would be known for. In 1841, she volunteered to teach a class to women inmates. These women were in a jail in Massachusetts. Dorothea was shocked by what she saw.
3     She saw the sane and insane all crowded together in the same cells. The inmates were dressed in rags and poorly fed. Many of the cells did not have enough heat. The people suffered from the cold. Some people were kept chained.
4     Dorothea started fighting for these people right away. She pushed the jail to put a stove in every cell. She also pushed for the inmates to get more food and better clothing.
5     Her thoughts about the mentally ill were different for the time. Most people thought that they could never be helped. They were shut away and forgotten about. At the time, the best place to put these people was in a prison.

Paragraphs 6 to 13:
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The Civil War

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