Virginia E. Bishop
This collection contains records related to Pauline (Polly) Moor’s time in high school at the Northfield Seminary and college and graduate school at Smith College, including commencement programs, theater programs, and other items. The collection also includes one photograph from her time at Smith College and a medal from a conference that Moor attended as an adult. The collection also features biographical information authored by Virginia E. Bishop.
Susanna Coit, 2018
Pauline Moor (Polly) was born in Odell, Illinois on May 19, 1909. As a child, she lived in Northfield, MA and attended Northfield School for Girls for high school and graduated in 1927. She graduated from Smith College in 1931 and went on to earn a Master of Arts In Child Development, also from Smith College in 1940. She gained experience teaching kindergarten while she worked towards her graduate degree and became the Director of the Nursery School at the Hale House in Boston in 1934.
After graduation she continued to teach early childhood education before eventually joining a research program at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Hospital in Boston. There, she worked with Dr. Theodore Terry as his team’s Educator and Child Development Specialist. Her work with Dr. Terry led her to Perkins School for the Blind during the summer of 1945 when she directed a nursery program for children while their mothers attended a summer institute. While mothers attended lectures from psychologists, pediatricians, nursery school educators, and other experts, the children would play together, under the direction of Moor. (She later became a member of the Corporation at Perkins.)
In 1952, she was hired by the American Foundation for the Blind as the National Consultant in Early Childhood. She became known as the national expert on blind preschool education and provided guidance for programs as they opened across the country. Her work help to “accelerate mainstreaming for blind children” (Bishop, 2005, 9).
She participated in and worked with numerous conferences and groups including the International Preschool Blind Seminar, the National Work Session on the Education of Blind with Sighted. She was also a member of the New England Association for Nursery Education.
Her work resulted in numerous publications including No Place to Go (1963), No Time to Lose (1968), and numerous articles and pamphlets. Her resources were used by educators, parents, and policy makers.
Following her retirement in June of 1974, she continued her work as a consultant and attended and participated in conferences. Moor died on August 6, 2004.
Bishop, Virginia E. “A Tribute to the Life of Polly Moor.” Watertown, Perkins School for the Blind, 2005.
Bishop, Virginia E. Mini-Steps and Milestones: A History of Services for Young Children Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired. Watertown, Perkins School for the Blind, 2006.
Koestler, Frances A. The Unseen Minority: A Social History of Blindness in the United States. New York, David McCay Company, Inc., 1976.
It is the responsibility of the user to obtain permission to publish from the owner of the copyright (the institution, the creator of the record, the author or his/her transferees, heirs, legates, or literary executors). The user agrees to indemnify and hold harmless Perkins School for the Blind, its officers, employees, and agents from and against all claims made by any person asserting that he or she is an owner of copyright.
This collection includes theater programs, student records (e.g., admission note, scholarship award information), a photograph, and commencement programs documenting Pauline (Polly) Moor’s time in high school, her undergraduate and graduate studies. In addition to representation of her academic career, there is a booklet from a college reunion and a name medal from a conference she attended and biographical materials written by Virginia E. Bishop.
B1:F1 = Box 1: Folder 1
4 Series, 1 box arranged chronologically
Series 1: Biography and Other
Series 2: Northfield Seminary, 1927
Series 3: Smith College Undergraduate, 1927-1931
Series 4: Smith College Graduate, 1940
This collection is arranged in four series.
Box: 1 Series 1: Biography and Other
B1:F1: “A Tribute to the Life of Polly Moor” by Virginia E. Bishop, 2005
B1:F2: Donation Letter (redacted copy), May 1, 2005
B1:F3: International Congress of Ophthalmology Exhibitor Medal, 1954
Box: 1 Series 2: Northfield Seminary, 1927
B1:F4: Northfield Seminary clippings, undated
B1:F5: Northfield Seminary theater programs, 1927
B1:F6: Northfield Seminary commencement, 1927
Box: 1 Series 3: Smith College Undergraduate, 1927-1931
B1:F7: Smith College records, 1927, 1931
B1:F8: Smith College student handbook, 1931
B1:F9: Smith College commencement, 1931
B1:F10: 15th Smith College Reunion booklet, 1946
B1:F11: Smith College group photo, undated
B1:F12: Theater programs, 1930, 1934, 1935, undated
Box 1 Series 4: Smith College Graduate, 1940
B1:F13: Masters Thesis acceptance, June 4, 1940
B1:F14: Smith College commencement, 1940
Bound Masters Thesis: A History of the Education of Preschool Children in the Social Settlements of Boston, May 1940, Smith College
Perkins School for the Blind.
Perkins School for the Blind--History.
American Foundation for the Blind.