Library Collections

Letters, memoirs, Sunday School chapbooks, postcards, photos, annual reports, cartoons and more!

Search or Browse our Collections to discover a broad range of records that have shaped the lived experiences of people with disabilities. More about the Library

"Playing Polio," The Polio Chronicle, 1933.

Education Programs

Bring disability history topics into US History survey, civics, and literature course work.

Teach with primary sources! Stand alone professional development! Our education sampler, Educating the Senses and The Campaign for Moral Treatment consider the disability issues engaging Americans from 1820 to 1860. More about Education Porgrams

Laundry Room, Willard Asylum, circa 1880.

Beyond Affliction

Beyond Affliction: The Disability History Project is a lively, award-winning radio series, produced by Laurie Block with Jay Allison (available for purchase in CD format). The exhibits here feature audio interviews, images, audio clips and background essays for each program. Slide shows will be added soon. Listen, look about, and consider how disability experiences matter to you and your community.

1. Inventing the Poster Child:

From Tiny Tim to the March of Dimes, the poster child was and still is central to charitable fundraising. Buy Inventing the Poster Child Now

Time Period: 1921

2. What's Work Got To Do With It?:

Adults with disabilities still face low employment expectations and job discrimination. What's it like to navigate the complex tangle of old and new policies and attitudes? Buy What's Work Got To Do With It? Now

Time Period: 1918

3. The Overdue Revolution:

Meet some of the disability rights movement's key advocates and consider why they came to demand civil rights not just social welfare supports. Hear them tell how they sat in, marched and organized to create a better future for themselves. Buy The Overdue Revolution Now

Time Period: 1960

4. Tomorrow's Children:

Unprecedented ethical dilemmas arise with prenatal testing. To understand present day challenges, we must consider how the treatment of disabled individuals in the past continues to influence the present. Buy Tomorrow's Children Now

Time Period: 1988