Anna Moscowitz Kross papers
Scope and Contents
Dates of Materials
- 1905 - 1976
- Kross, Anna M. (Person)
Conditions Governing Access
Conditions Governing Use
Biographical / Historical
In 1918, after several years of private practice, Kross accepted an appointment in the office of the Corporation Council for New York City with an assignment to the Family Court. She remained there until 1923 when she returned to private practice specializing in labor relations. In 1933, Mayor John P. O'Brien appointed Kross to the bench as a Magistrate. She was the first woman judge in the city magistrates court. She was reappointed in 1940 and again in 1950.
In 1946 Kross organized and became the presiding Magistrate of the Home Term Court of the Borough of Manhattan, an experimental social court dealing with the problems of disturbed families. In 1951 the Home Term Court became citywide. In 1954 Kross was appointed Commissioner of Correction of New York City. During her tenure she received a great deal of publicity for her outspoken criticism of government policies that discriminated against the poor. She served with the Correction Department until her retirement in 1966 at the age of 75.
Kross advocated for the implementation of psychological and psychiatric social work in the administration of criminal justice and was instrumental in getting trained psychiatrists, vocational guidance workers, religious agencies, and trained medical personnel involved. She successfully fought against the public spectacle of trials of young girls on morals and vice charges, particularly through the establishment of the Wayward Minors Court (now Girls' Term Court) designed exclusively to deal with the problems of adolescent female delinquency. She insisted that not only prostitutes, but also their clients be booked. Kross gained wide recognition for her work on behalf of youth, advocating a more judicious attitude toward social problems. This was reflected in her insistence that prison was inappropriate for the indigent, mentally ill, prostitutes, or those addicted to drugs or alcohol. She also advocated against the inequities of the bail system
Kross received numerous citations, awards, and honorary degrees and belonged to numerous organizations, including American and international law associations, groups concerned with law enforcement and correction, and Jewish organizations. She died August 27, 1979 at the age of 88.
3 linear feet (8 containers)
Language of Materials
- I. Biographical Material
- II. Writings and Speeches
- III. Correspondence
- IV. Professional Activities
- V. Photographs and Audiovisual Materials
Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements
Immediate Source of Acquisition
- Courts -- New York (state) -- New York
- Criminal justice, Administration of
- Criminals -- Rehabilitation -- United States -- 20th century
- Frankel, Alice Kross
- House of Detention for Women--New York (State)--New York
- Hurst, Fannie, 1889-1968
- Jewish women
- Johnson, Lady Bird, 1912--
- Johnson, Lyndon B. (Lyndon Baines), 1908-1973
- Juvenile delinquency -- New York (state)
- Kross, Anna M.
- Lee, Gypsy Rose, 1914-70
- Motley, Constance Baker
- New York (N.Y.) -- Social conditions -- 20th century
- New York (N.Y.)--Department of Correction
- New York (N.Y.). Department of Correction
- Prisoners -- Legal status, laws, etc -- United States
- Reformatories for women -- United States
- Roosevelt, Eleanor, 1884-1962--Correspondence
- Wagner, Robert F. (Robert Ferdinand), 1910-
- Women judges -- United States
- Women lawyers -- United States
- Women prisoners -- New York (State)
- Finding aid to the Anna Moscowitz Kross papers
- Legacy Finding Aid (Updated)
- Susan Boone
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Encoding funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
- 07/26/2017: This resource was modified by the ArchivesSpace Preprocessor developed by the Harvard Library (https://github.com/harvard-library/archivesspace-preprocessor)
- 2005-09-23: mnsss37 converted from EAD 1.0 to 2002 by v1to02-5c.xsl (sy2003-10-15).
- 2017-07-26T17:48:17-04:00: This record was migrated from InMagic DB Textworks to ArchivesSpace.
- 2019-03-29: Updated finding aid.
Part of the Sophia Smith Collection of Women's History Repository
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