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Repository: Gallaudet University Archives Call No.: MSS 140Creator: Title: Papers of Francis C. Higgins, 1818-1997. Quantity: 1.5 Linear Feet (3 document boxes) Abstract: Note: This document last updated 2005 December 12.
Acquisition Information: The Francis C. Higgins Papers were given to the Gallaudet University Archives by Francis Higgins. The gift was made in 1998.Processed by: Sara Robinson. 2004 November 18. 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:See ALADIN
Francis Cole Higgins was born on September 23, 1913 in Flemington, New Jersey. He became deaf at 3 years old due to an unknown cause. Francis Higgins attended the Flemington, New Jersey Grammar School. He completed his studies there in 1927 and then attended the New Jersey School for the Deaf until 1931. Higgins then earned his Bachelor of Science degree at Gallaudet College in 1936 and then his Master of Science from Rutgers in 1938. He spent the next nine years teaching at the Kentucky School for the Deaf then taught Chemistry and other science courses at Gallaudet College until his retirement in 1983. He taught for 3 more years at the Northwest Campus on a volunteer basis.
Higgins married in 1939 to Catherine Bronson of Alabama. They had five children, including a set of triplets. He was actively involved in the Baptist Church of the Deaf in Washington, DC where he served as lay leader for more than forty years. He has also been actively involved in the Kentucky Chapter of the Gallaudet College Alumni Association as well as the GCAA itself. He has earned numerous recognitions including Man of the Year Award from Alpha Sigma Pi, Man of Merit from Delta Epsilon, awards from the National Fraternal Society of the Deaf, Tower Clock, and religious organizations.
Scope and Content
The Higgins collection includes 48 letters from significant figures in Deaf history. A detailed letter index can be found in the listing for Box 3. The letters include letters from Amos Draper, E.M. Gallaudet, Edward A. Fay, Elizabeth Peet, and John A. Jacobs. In addition to the letters, there are also articles, speeches, biographies of Higgins and various individuals, handwritten notes, histories of Gallaudet, news clippings, and reports by Higgins. The significant portion of this collection, aside from the letters, are Higgins' pages, notes, and photographs from the manuscript of his book, "A pictorial guide to places of historical and artistic interest related to deaf people in the Washington D.C. Metropolitan Area." The collection dates from 1818 to 1997. The bulk is dated during the 1940s-1980s.
The Percival Hall Papers consist of letters, clippings, certificates, diary, newsletters, telegrams, poems, photographs, by-laws, thesis, sermons and lectures.
The collection, which consists of approximately 4,250 pages, dates from 1887 to 1958. The bulk of the collection consists of his lectures, speeches and sermons. The next bulk of the collection consists of his biographical information. The bulk dates are mostly between 1930s and 1940s.
The largest subject in the collection is focused on the education of the deaf. Percival wrote many articles and speeches on deaf education. There are letters and greeting cards included in honor of President Hall's anniversary of his employment and also his birthday celebration. One interesting item in the collection is an 1890 thesis that Percival wrote while he was a student at Harvard. The thesis is titled, "Harmonoids". It is about mathematics. Also included in the collection are correspondence between Percival and the Como Orchard Land Company in the West where he invested in stocks with the company. Series Descriptions and Folder ListsNo Series
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