MSS 23
Northrop, Helen, 1886-1981
Papers of Helen Northrop, 1905-1977

Gallaudet University Archives

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Gallaudet University Archives
Call No.: MSS 23
Title: Papers of Helen Northrop, 1905-1977.
Quantity: 0.5 Linear Feet (1 document box)
Note: This document last updated 2006 January 6. 

Administrative Information

Acquisition Information: The Helen Northrop collection was given to the Gallaudet University Archives on April 1, 1977 by Winifred N. Wright.
Processed by: Ulf Hedberg. 1993 May 6.
Processing Note:
Conditions on Use and Access: This collection is open to the public with no restrictions. Photocopies may be made for scholarly research.

Related Material in the Archives:


  • Photograph album of Ellen Pearson Stewart [picture]. Gallaudet University Archives, Call Number: Photograph Album AL 97, 98, 99, 100
  • Photograph album of Helen Northrop [picture]. Gallaudet University Archives, Call Number: Photograph Album AL 12
  • Helen Northrop [picture]. Gallaudet University Archives, Call Number: Portraits


  • Scrapbook of Gallaudet College and student activities. Gallaudet University Archives, Call Number: Scrapbook Album 4


  • Helen Northrop, 1926. Gallaudet University Archives, Call Number: SMSS

Vertical Files

  • Helen Northrop. Gallaudet University Archives, Call Number: Deaf Biographical

Biographical Sketch

Helen Northrop was born in 1886 in Wayne, Nebraska. She was educated in a public school for 11 years, 1st grade through high school. She then became deafened due to an illness and attended the Nebraska School for the Deaf for 7 months. In 1905, she was admitted to Gallaudet College and graduated with a B.A. degree in 1908. She spent most of her life pursuing her educational career. After graduation, she went to teach at the North Dakota School for the Deaf until 1911, then returned to Gallaudet College and taught several subjects including home economics, English, mathematics, and gymnastics. She also worked as the College librarian.

Between 1919 and 1923, Helen Northrop taught at the Idaho School for the Deaf. In 1923, she received a M.A. degree from Gallaudet College, which gave her more opportunity advance her educational career. Finally, she spent 30 years at the Washington State School for the Deaf. In 1933 she was promoted to principal and retired in 1954 after a total of 45 years as an educator of the Deaf. Gallaudet College presented her an honorary degree, Doctor of Pedagogy in 1956. She passed away in 1981 at 95 years old.

Scope and Content

The Helen Northrop Collection consists of material related to her pedagogical work. The collection contains approximately 850 items dating from 1905 to 1977. The majority of the papers date from 1930's. The bulk of the collection consists of pedagogical outlines.

Series Descriptions and Folder Lists
No Series

Box Folder Title of Folder Date
1 1 Correspondence 1944‑1977
1 2 Memorabilia 1908‑1915
1 3 Notes ‑ Summer School 1937
1 4 Outlines ‑ Acoustic Work 1930's
1 5 Outlines ‑ First, Second and Third Year Work 1930's
1 6 Outlines ‑ First Year 1930's
1 7 Outlines ‑ Geography 1934
1 8 Outlines ‑ History 1930's
1 9 Outlines ‑ Pronoun Drills 1930's
1 10 Outlines ‑ Rhythm Work 1930's
1 11 Outlines ‑ Sunday School Work 1930's
1 12 Progress Notes 1934
1 13 Publications ‑ Straight Language 1937 for the Deaf Folder 14 Special Notes on Curricula Book I 1932
1 14 Miscellaneous 1905‑1927


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