Collection Facts

Extent: 
122 items
Dates of Original: 
c. 1846 – 1929
NYH Topic Area(s):

Historical Context

Emily Howland (November 29, 1827 – June 29, 1929) was an educator, abolitionist, suffragist and peace activist, as well as a bank director. She taught at the Normal School for Colored Girls in Washington, D.C., established a school in Virginia for the children of freed slaves, and later served as owner and consulting head of the Sherwood Select school. During the Civil War, she taught literacy skills to freed slaves, and provided nursing care to victims of a smallpox outbreak. Also active in women’s suffrage, temperance, and the peace movement, she made many significant contributions in these areas, particularly as a writer and public speaker. She served as the first woman director of a national bank in the United States, at the Aurora National Bank in Aurora, New York, a role that she held for nearly 40 years.

Scope of Collection

The collection includes Emily Howland’s personal correspondence and diaries, and many books from her private library, as well as an extensive collection of pamphlets, posters and ephemera related to her work in education, temperance, women’s suffrage, peace activism, and the abolition of slavery.