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Merrill-Palmer Institute: Edna Noble White Records

 Collection
Identifier: UR002561
The papers of the Merrill-Palmer Institute: Edna Noble White Collection contain personal and professional correspondence; minutes from various national, state, and local organizations as well as Merrill-Palmer committees; literature regarding child and parental education; research studies relating to child development, family relations, and immigrant acculturation; and correspondence and literature from a number of federal agencies concerned with child and family welfare.

Important subjects in the collection: Agricultural Missions Foundation American Association of University Women Child care--Michigan Child development--Cross-cultural studies Child development--Law and legislation--United States Child development--Research--United States Child development--Testing Child welfare Children--Growth Children--Nutrition--Psychological aspects Children of immigrants--Michigan--Detroit Day care centers--Michigan Detroit Council for Youth Service Education of children Emergency Education Project (WPA) Emergency Nursery Schools Project (WPA) Frontier Nursing Service Home economics--Study and teaching Infants--Development Michigan State Committee on Day Care of Children New Education Fellowship Nursery schools Parenting--Study and teaching Preschool teachers--Training of United States.--Works Progress Administration Wayne County Council of Defense Committee on Day Care of Children Women immigrants--Michigan--Detroit Youth--Services for--Michigan Important correspondents in the collection: Lawrence Kelso Frank Grace Langdon Esther McGuire Margaret Mead Marie Meloney Mary Sweeney Louise Stanley Dorothy Tyler

Series Description: Series I: Professional Affiliations, 1920-1957 Series II: Administrative Files, 1925-1966 Series III: General Correspondence Files, 1902-1950 Series IV: Visual Material

Dates

  • 1902 - 1966

Creator

Language of Materials

Material entirely in English.

Access

Collection is open for research.

Use

Refer to the Walter P. Reuther Library Rules for Use of Archival Materials. Refer to the Walter P. Reuther Library Rules for Use of Archival Materials. Restrictions: Researchers may encounter records of a sensitive nature – personnel files, case records and those involving investigations, legal and other private matters. Privacy laws and restrictions imposed by the Library prohibit the use of names and other personal information which might identify an individual, except with written permission from the Director and/or the donor.

Extent

64.25 Linear Feet ((64 SB, 1 MB), 1 OS Book)

Abstract

Edna Noble White, a pioneer in family life education, served as first director of the Merrill-Palmer Institute from her appointment in 1920 until her retirement in 1947. Under Edna Noble White’s leadership, the Institute expanded its services to include a student program of college level courses in child development, family life, parenting skills, and nursery education as well as the Merrill-Palmer Nursery School, Camps, Farm, Infant Services, and Recreational Clubs. Ms. White was also very active professionally on a national level and engaged with Detroit youth services agencies.

The records of Edna Noble White contain personal and professional correspondence; minutes from various national, state, and local organizations as well as Merrill-Palmer committees; literature regarding child and parental education; research studies relating to child development, family relations, and immigrant acculturation; and correspondence and literature from a number of federal agencies concerned with child and family welfare.

History

Edna Noble White served as first director of the Merrill-Palmer Institute from her appointment in 1920 until her retirement in 1947. Born in Fairmount, Illinois in 1880, she taught at Danville High School after graduation from the University of Illinois. In 1908 she joined the faculty of the home economics department at Ohio State University, becoming head of the department in 1913. The Merrill-Palmer Institute was originally founded as the Merrill-Palmer School of Motherhood and Home Training to prepare young women as wives and mothers, but under Edna Noble White’s leadership, it expanded its services to include a student program of college level courses in child development, family life, parenting skills, and nursery education as well as the Merrill- Palmer Nursery School, Camps, Farm, Infant Services, and Recreational Clubs. Edna Noble White, a pioneer in family life education, was a member and officer of numerous national professional associations, most prominently the American Association of University Women, Agricultural Missions Foundation, American Home Economics Association, and the New Education Fellowship. She participated in the activities of several Detroit youth services agencies and was instrumental in efforts to expand day care and nursery school services in Michigan during World War II. She also took part in several Works Progress Administration projects, such as the Emergency Nursery Schools project and the Emergency Education project. She died in 1954.

Arrangement

Arranged in 4 series: Series 1 (Boxes 1-3), Series 2 (Boxes 36-50, 1 OS folder), Series 3 (Boxes 51-64), and Series 4 (Box 65).

Transfers

Several photographs (Box 65) and flyers have been placed in the Archives Audiovisual Collection.

Processing History

Processed and finding aid written by Walter P. Reuther Library.
Title
Guide to the Merrill-Palmer Institute: Edna Noble White Records
Status
completed
Author
Processed by Walter P. Reuther Library.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English

Repository Details

Part of the Walter P. Reuther Library Repository

Contact:
5401 Cass Avenue
Detroit MI 48202 USA