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

A woman with short hair stands in front of a small airplane.
May 23

What do a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member, a female aviation pioneer and an iconic author have in common?

A young Perkins student sits on a hobby horse while Tommy Stringer reclines on the grass.
May 11

When she was just 10 years old, Helen Keller launched a fundraising drive to help a poor boy who was deafblind come to Perkins.

A young Helen Heller reads a large braille book, which is in her lap
April 25

Keller was never afraid to take unpopular positions, as she did when she argued that William Shakespeare didn't write his plays