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The Robinson School, Puerto Rico photograph album


Held at: University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts [Contact Us]3420 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6206

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Overview and metadata sections

The Robinson School was founded in 1902 by May Leonard Woodruff (1862-1948), executive secretary of the Women's Home Missionary Society of the United Methodist Church, as a home for orphan girls in the Puerta de Tierra neighborhood of San Juan, Puerto Rico. George O. Robinson (1832-1915), an attorney from Detroit, donated $10,000 to purchase 4 acres of land in the Condado neighborhood and the orphanage became known as the George O. Robinson Orphanage and Industrial Home for Girls. The school expanded and developed rapidly over the next several decades. It introduce the first kindergarten education program in Puerto Rico in 1905 and was accredited through 8th grade by the Department of Instruction in 1918. It expanded its facilities in 1923 to accommodate grades 1-4 and again in 1941 to house 120 boarding students. It became co-educational in 1944 and graduated its first class in 1947 (all female). The Robinson School was incorporated in the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico in 1977 as an English-language, coeducational, college preparatory school for grades kinder to twelfth. The school is still operating today on the original campus built from Robinson's donation.

Source: Robinson School, 2023.

This photograph album contains 263 mounted black and white photographs. The album was compiled by an unidentified woman from the state of Georgia in 1945-1946 and documents her time as a teacher at the Robinson School as well as her travels throughout Puerto Rico. Many photographs from the Robinson School campus are labeled and identify fellow teachers, administrators, visitors (including U.S. servicemen), buildings, students, events, and local staff members. Her travels throughout the island include souvenir and personal photographs of beaches, historic sites, farms, villages, transportation, local residents and a "rest home," and emanate from locations such as La Pearla, the El Morro Castle, Condado Bay, the Falls at El Yunque, Luquilla Beach, Aibonito, the McLean Conference Grounds, and Ponce. Also included is a program from an Easter service, 1945 and a pamphlet for the McLean Conference Grounds.

Researchers should handle the album with care as the pages are extremely brittle and some of the pages have become detached.

Sold by McBride Rare Books, 2022.

University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts
Finding Aid Author
Kristine McGee
Finding Aid Date
10 July 2023
Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research use.

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Copyright restrictions may exist. For most library holdings, the Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania do not hold copyright. It is the responsibility of the requester to seek permission from the holder of the copyright to reproduce material from the Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts.

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The Robinson School, Puerto Rico photograph album, 1945-1946.
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