Guide to the Research Collections



The collection contains a representative selection of histories of education, expositions of educational theory, and works by major educators. There are, for example, 125 entries in the Public Catalog for publications by and about Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi, including his works in German and in English translation. More than 250 cards represent works by and about John Dewey, including critical studies in a number of foreign languages.

Although the library has not generally collected works of applied pedagogy, it does have some interesting examples of textbooks. For the United States these consist of readers, spellers (particularly Webster's spellers, many editions of which are held in the Rare Book Division), arithmetics, and other school books from the eighteenth century. There are also examples from later periods, including a group of schoolbooks issued in the South during the 1860s and 1870s. In the 1930s the library began to collect modern foreign schoolbooks for the political and social ideas they reflect, and acquired several hundred such publications before discontinuing the program. About 400 volumes came from Spain: 350 in Spanish, issued between 1900 and 1936, and 45 in Catalan, issued between 1920 and 1936. Both groups have readers (sometimes an entire series for the first through sixth grades), literary anthologies, books of religious instruction, and social studies texts: the Catalan items include some geographies and histories of the region. Other Spanish-language material includes 37 titles issued in Argentina during the 1930s. Another group of 200 items appeared in Germany between 1925 and 1936; some of the social science texts show the propaganda of the early years of Hitler's regime. There are 10 Italian readers and grammars from this period. The classified collections contain some primers and other textbooks in minor Asian and African languages, collected as representative publications from areas with small publishing outputs, and as examples of less widely known language.