Areas of Study

MSS 92
Episcopal Conference of the Deaf, est.1880
Collection of Episcopal Conference of the Deaf, 1952-1996

Gallaudet University Archives
Descriptive Summary
Repository: Gallaudet University Archives
Call No.: MSS 92
Title: Collection of Episcopal Conference of the Deaf, 1952-1996.
Quantity: 1.5 Linear Feet (3 document boxes)
Note: This document last updated 2005 December 2.
Administrative Information
Acquisition Information: Rev. Otto B. Berg donated the collection of the Episcopal Conference of the Deaf to the Gallaudet University Archives in the 1980s.
Processed by: Margaret A. Steedman. 1998 November 20.
Processing Note: Revised by Michael Olson. 2001 April 5. Conditions on Use and Access: This collection is open to the public with no restrictions. Photocopies may be made for scholarly research.
Related Material in the Archives:
Historical Sketch
The Episcopal Church was the first to begin work with the deaf in the United States in 1850. The Episcopal Conference of the Deaf was organized in 1880, incorporated in 1924. In 1850, Rev. Thomas Gallaudet, eldest son of Rev. Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet, began a Sunday school class for the deaf people at St. Stephens Church in New York City. At that time, Rev. Thomas Gallaudet was an instructor at the New York School for the Deaf. He was concerned about the lack of religious services for the deaf people; he resigned his teaching position and entered the ministry. He was ordained as an Episcopal priest in 1851. He founded St. Ann’s Church for the Deaf in New York City.

In 1881, Rev. Thomas Gallaudet and other priests formed a conference called the Conference of Church Workers Among the Deaf. The conference was held annually with deaf members of the Episcopal churches in the eastern part of the United States.
For more information on the history of the Episcopal Conference of the Deaf, read Rev. Otto B. Berg’s A Missionary Chronicle: Being a History of the Ministry to the Deaf in the Episcopal Church, 1850-1980.

Scope and Content
The Episcopal Conference of the Deaf Collection consists of minutes and proceedings of the conference, financial reports, reports, list of members, letters, programs, and clippings. The Episcopal Conference of the Deaf was organized in 1880 and held annual conventions.
The collection, which consists of approximately 2,550 pages, dates from 1952 to 1989. The bulk of the collection consists of proceedings of the conference. The bulk dates are mostly between 1952 and 1989. The strength of the collection is centered on the proceedings of the conference.
The largest subject in the collection is focused on the religious cultural groups of deaf people. In the collection-included proceedings from 1952 to 1996, however, for the years 1965, 1991, 1992, 1994, 1995 are not included.
There is a file on program on celebrating the Feast Day of Rev. Thomas Gallaudet with Rev. Henry Winter Syle that was held in Washington, DC in 1989.

Series Descriptions and Folder Lists

No Series

Box Folder Title of Folder Date
1 01 List of Conventions from 1881 to 1981 1981
1 02 Proceedings of the Conference 1952-1961
1 03 Minutes of the Convention 1962 -1964
1 04 Minutes of the Planning Committee 1966
1 05 Proceedings of the Conference – Cazenovia, NY 1967
1 06 Proceedings of the Conference – Houston, TX 1968
1 07 Proceedings of the Conference – Cape Cod, MA 1969
1 08 Proceedings of the Conference – Albion, MI 1970
1 09 Proceedings of the Conference – Ocean City, NJ 1971
1 10 Proceedings of the 92nd Conference – Kent, CT 1972
1 11 Proceedings of the 93rd Conference – Grandy, CO 1973
1 12 Proceedings of the 94th Conference – St. Louis, MO 1974
1 13 Proceedings of the 95th Conference – Northbrook, IL 1975
2 01 Proceedings of the 96th Conference – Lynchburg, VA 1976
2 02 Proceedings of the 97th Conference – Berea, OH 1977
2 03 Proceedings of the 98th Conference – York, PA 1978
2 04 Proceedings of the Conference – St. Louis, MO 1979
2 05 Proceedings of the Conference – Birmingham, AL 1980
2 06 Proceedings of the Conference – Washington, DC 1981
2 07 Proceedings of the 51st Conference – Cazenovia, NY 1982
2 08 Proceedings of the 52nd Conference – Williamsburg, VA 1983
3 01 Proceedings of the 53rd Conference – Allentown, PA 1984
3 02 Proceedings of the 54th Conference – Techny, IL 1985
3 03 Proceedings of the 55th Conference – Berkeley, CA 1986
3 04 Proceedings of the 56th Conference – Sunset Hills, MO 1987
3 05 Proceedings of the 57th Conference – Arlington, VA 1988
3 06 Proceedings of the 58th Conference – Asheville, NC 1989
3 07 Proceedings of the 59th Conference – San Diego, CA 1990
3 08 Proceedings of the 61st Conference – Amherst, NY 1993
3 09 Proceedings of the 63rd Conference – Hamilton, NY 1996
3 10 Celebrating the Feast Day of Rev. Thomas Gallaudet with Rev. Henry W. Syle 1989

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