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Dec 9, 2022
Manuscripts – The John Miller Deaf Sports Collection, 1921-2005
King Jordan Student Academic Center 1255
Miller, John, 1935-
The John Miller Deaf Sports Collection, 1921-2005
Gallaudet University Archives
Repository: Gallaudet University Archives
Call No.: MSS 237
Creators: Miller, John, 1935-
Title: The John Miller Deaf Sports Collection, 1921-2005
Quantity: 8 boxes (4.5 lf)
Abstract: Note: This document last updated April 2019.
Acquisition Information: Donated to the Archives by John Miller, undated, and by Lois Hoover, 2018.
Processed By: Begun by Corinne Palaia and Michael J. Olson, 2017, and completed by Christopher Shea, April 2019.
Conditions on Use and Access: This collection is open to the public with no restrictions.
Related Material in the Archives
Born deaf to deaf parents in Washington, D.C., in 1935, John Miller attended the Kendall School, which was only a short distance from his home. At age 14, he joined the Kendall Wildcats basketball team and quickly became a standout player, scoring an average of 20.2 points a game and never missing a single game. He was honored as an All-American each year between 1951 and 1953, and during his senior year, 1953, he was recognized as an All-D.C. player and named the Silent Worker’s Player of the Year. Miller attended Gallaudet College for one year and then left to take a job as a linotype operator at the Government Printing Office. He continued to work until his retirement 39 years later. Miller was also very active in the local deaf clubs, including the District of Columbia Club for the Deaf (DCCD), which later moved to Maryland and changed its name to the Metropolitan Washington Association of the Deaf (MWAD). He served six years as MWAD president, growing the club to 515 members, and was also active in publishing the MWAD’s newsletter, Dee Cee Eyes. Even after he graduated from Kendall School, Miller continued to be involved in deaf sports, particularly basketball and softball, through the regional Southeast Athletic Association of the Deaf (SEAAD) and its nationwide affiliate, the American Athletic Association of the Deaf (AAAD). He played on the DCCD/MWAD basketball team for 17 years, scoring over 7000 points. During this time, the DCCD team won the SEAAD regional title 15 out of 17 seasons and the AAAD national championship once, in 1965. He also represented America in basketball at the World Games for the Deaf in 1961 and 1965, winning gold medals both times. In 1977, DCCD won its first AAAD softball championship with Miller as a player-manager.
After retiring as a player, Miller remained active in the SEAAD and AAAD, including serving as SEAAD vice president for six years and president for two terms, and AAAD softball commissioner for 13 years. During his six years as MWAD president, the MWAD basketball team won the AAAD title four times, and the softball team also won several championships. He was named to the SEAAD and AAAD Halls of Fame in 1980 as a player and then later as a delegate-at-large. After retiring from the GPO, Miller and his wife, Ausma, relocated to Arizona in 2005. He was co-chair, with Lois Hoover, of the Kendall School 150th Anniversary celebration.
Scope and Content
The bulk of this collection (about half) is program books from deaf sporting events hosted by the SEAAD, AAAD, and other deaf athletic groups. This particularly includes national softball and basketball tournaments where Miller participated as either a player, a manager, or a spectator. There is also some material on deaf bowling events.
The remainder of the series includes photographs, mostly unlabeled, and some material from Miller’s sports career at Kendall School in the 1950s, such as coach’s reports (written by Frank Turk) and intramural sports standings. It also includes a collection of artifacts, mostly sports memorabilia, including Kendall and Gallaudet sports letters, pennants, Miller’s diploma from the 1965 International Games for the Deaf, and more.
Series 1. AAAD basketball tournament program books, 1970-1997
A collection of tournament programs from the American Athletic Association of the Deaf’s annual basketball tournament, including information on team members, brackets, sponsors, and event schedules.
Series 2. SEAAD basketball registration forms, 1991
Top carbon copies of registration forms for teams, fans, and other attendees at the Southeast Athletic Association of the Deaf’s 45th annual regional basketball tournament held March 7-9, 1991. Includes a form for each attendee, lists of ticket prices, and team rosters and photographs.
Series 3. AAAD softball tournament program books, 1984-1994
Similar to series 1, this series consists of program books for the annual slow-pitch softball tournament. Includes team rosters and photos, event schedules, brackets, advertising flyers, and more.
Series 4. SEAAD and MWAD softball tournament planning records, 1993-1994
On August 25-27, 1994, the Southeast Athletic Association of the Deaf and the Metro Washington Association of the Deaf co-hosted SEAAD’s annual softball tournament in Washington, D.C.
These records cover the planning for this event and include correspondence, meeting minutes, flyers and other advertising, and copies of the SEAAD newsletter.
Series 5. SEAAD softball tournament program books, 1986-1996
As in series 3, this series includes annual softball tournament programs for events hosted by SEAAD. Includes team rosters and photos, brackets, newsletters, flyers, and more.
Series 6. MWAD softball scorebooks, 1975-1978
A small collection of baseball scorebooks, filled out by hand, covering various games played by the MWAD softball team.
Series 7. Bowling program books, 1989-1996
A collection of program books from bowling tournaments held by various deaf groups in the Washington area, including the MWAD, the National Deaf Bowling Association, and the Metro Mixed League.
Series 8. Other program books, 1959-2004
A collection of program books, from both sports and non-sports events, including basketball tournaments, a beauty pageant, and Hall of Fame and anniversary events for various deaf organizations.
Series 9. Kendall School sports records, 1952-1983
This series’s bulk is sports rosters, program books, and coach’s reports from the Kendall School 1952-1954 sports seasons during Miller’s time as a basketball star. It also includes some material from Kendall School’s 125th-anniversary celebration in 1983.
Series 10. Correspondence and minutes, 1960-2005
A small collection of correspondence, by Miller and others, mostly related to deaf sports and other deaf organizations. Includes some material from Miller’s campaign for AAAD softball commissioner and letterhead and envelopes from AAAD and MWAD.
Series 11. Newsletters, 1970-2005
Copies of the AAAD Bulletin, Dee Cee Eyes (the MWAD’s newsletter), and other deaf and hearing newsletters and magazines, mostly on sports topics and/or deaf organizations.
Series 12. Photographs, 1921-1993
A collection of photographs, mostly of deaf basketball and other sports teams at the MWAD and DCCD (District of Columbia Club of the Deaf), as well as photos of Miller as a teenage basketball player and as an adult.
Series 13. Artifacts, undated
A collection of items, mostly sports-related. It includes sports letters from Kendall School and Gallaudet, pennants, and about half a book’s worth of loose scrapbook pages, mostly with photos and news clippings about Kendall’s sports and events. It also includes Miller’s diploma from the X International Games for the Deaf (1965), where he competed as a basketball player, and some large photos of him in front of the GPO building.
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