Boys TownBoys Town
is the name of an organization (now known as Girls and Boys Town
) dedicated to the housing and education of at-risk children. It was founded as Boys Town in 1917
by Father Edward J. Flanagan, a Roman Catholic
priest, at a site in downtown Omaha, Nebraska
. The organization is now located at Girls and Boys Town's national headquarters, located in the Village of Boys Town, Nebraska
, a National Historic Landmark west of Omaha. The name of the organization was changed, by vote of the children then living there, to make it clear to girls who needed help that they are welcome there.
The organization's official website is located at Girls and Boys Town.
In 1938, a film, also called Boys Town, based on Father Flanagan's work (although fictionalized) was released. It starred Spencer Tracy as Father Edward J. Flanagan, and Mickey Rooney, Henry Hull, Gene Reynolds, Edward Norris and Addison Richards.
The film was written by Dore Schary, Eleanore Griffin and John Meehan, and was directed by Norman Taurog.
The movie was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture. It won the Academy Award for Best Actor for Tracy, and the Best Writing, Original Story for Eleanore Griffin and Dore Schary.
It is memorable for its famous line, delivered by Rooney's character, "He ain't heavy, he's my brother."