Save the Helen Keller Archives
What Are the Helen Keller Archives?
The Helen Keller Archives contain over 80,000 items, corresponding to over 153,000 digital pages. It is the single largest repository of materials by and about Helen Keller in the world.
Here’s what’s already online: The Helen Keller digitization project.
The collection includes correspondence, speeches, press clippings, scrapbooks, photographs, photographic albums, architectural drawings, and artifacts spanning over 80 years — with images and correspondence from key figures ranging from Alexander Graham Bell and Mark Twain to Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Pearl S. Buck.
The Helen Keller Archives are the world’s leading resource for historians, researchers, filmmakers, writers, publishers, and schoolchildren searching for information about and by Helen Keller and the times during which she lived.
Create access: Much of this amazing collection has never been seen by the general public or made accessible to researchers due to its fragility and staff constraints. Digitization will change this. Very importantly, this archive will be fully accessible to those who are blind and visually impaired as well as sighted audiences. This is pioneering work!
Preserve the physical collection: Beyond the natural deterioration of physical materials over time, many irreplaceable items are repeatedly photocopied and handled, causing long-term damage to the collection. Digitization will help to preserve the physical collection and ensure that the content is never lost.
Learn about the past to create a better future: Helen Keller’s involvement in the key cultural, social, and political events of the 19th and 20th centuries is unparalleled. She was both a product of her environment and a driving force upon it. This archive represents a powerful vehicle for continuing the work begun by Helen Keller and AFB to build a more inclusive world. Harnessing the power of the collection, we can inspire employers and the public to see beyond a person’s disabilities to a more equitable society, and to empower those with any disability to succeed in the modern world.
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