Perkins History Museum

Laura Bridgman
Laura Bridgman

Perkins student Laura Bridgman was the first person with deafblindness to learn to read and write.

Learn More about Laura Bridgman

Anne Sullivan
Anne Sullivan

Anne Sullivan and Helen Keller dramatically changed the world's perception of individuals with disabilities.

Learn More about Anne Sullivan

Helen Keller
Helen Keller

Helen Keller, who attended Perkins, is considered by many to be a leading figure of the 20th century.

Learn More about Helen Keller

First Kindergarten for the Blind
Kindergarten-aged students holding hands in a circle.

The Perkins Kindergarten, opened in 1887, drew pupils from all over the country.

Learn More about kindergarten for the blind

Beginnings of Deafblind Education
a boy talking with a teacher using tactile sign language

Deafblind education has evolved from the days of Laura Bridgman to the 21st century.

Learn More about deafblind education

Visit the Museum
a Perkins tour guide in front of one of the displays

Schedule a free guided tour through the Perkins Museum by filling out a tour request.

Schedule a tour

Hayes Research Library
books on a table with the "S.P. Hayes Research Library" sign

The Hayes Research Library is a resource for researchers, the Perkins community, professionals, parents and the public.

Plan a visit

Perkins Archives
A photograph of Helen Keller and Anne Sullivan facing one another. Sullivan is wearing a dress with a high collar that flares at the shoulders.

The Perkins Archives include collections related to the history of Perkins and the education of the blind and deafblind.

Explore the Archives

About Us

The Perkins Museum works in partnership with the Hayes Research Library and Perkins Archives to preserve the history of Perkins and blindness education and share it with the world.

Have a question?

We welcome questions by email, phone or in person. Our Frequently Asked Questions has additional information about some common Research Library questions.

Contact/Hours

HayesLibrary@Perkins.org
617-972-7250

Monday through Friday
8:15 am to 4:15 pm

An open book with embossed letters and braille characters
August 16

The book that revolutionized the world by introducing braille is a highlight of the Perkins Archive collection.

A man sews a striped mattress
August 10

Perkins’ research librarian rediscovers six alumni who went on to serve in the Massachusetts State Legislature.

A young Theresa Chan Poh Lin tactile signs with Helen Keller on a couch
July 8

Former Perkins student Theresa Chan Poh Lin, who was deafblind, left an unforgettable impression on everyone who met her.