PAPERS (1940-1998)

18 linear inches






The papers (donor no. 436) were donated by Phyllis Harper-Bardach in 1997.


The papers are open for research.


Copyright transferred to the University of Iowa.


In Box 3.


Two videocassettes. (V263, V264)


Lisa Mott, 2002. [Harper-BardachPhyllis.doc]





Phyllis Margaret Freeman was born on January 3, 1928 in Staten Island, New York.  Freeman attended Curtis High School where she served as captain of the undefeated girl’s basketball team during her senior year.  Freeman graduated from Howard University in Washington, D.C. with a B.A. in Spanish in 1948, followed by a wedding on June 12 to William H. Harper, Jr.  The Harper’s had three children, the youngest of whom was born deaf.  As a result of her son Freeman’s disability, Harper earned an M.A. in Deaf Education at Columbia University in New York City in 1959.  She achieved a doctorate in Educational Administration at the University of Iowa in 1980.


            Harper’s early professional life was focused around the education of deaf children, incorporating a pedagogy that included parents’ participation.  Harper taught in the Quincy, Illinois school district from 1959-1966.  She supervised the Parent-Pupil Tutor Program at the Illinois School for the Deaf in Jacksonville, Illinois from 1966-1972, where she drew national attention for her article “A Visible Speech Aid” in The Volta Review.  During the summers between 1961 and 1975, Harper was a lecturer on Parent Education Guidance and Counseling at the Summer Institute for Parents’ and Preschool Deaf Children in Illinois.  In 1975, Harper became an itinerant teacher for the hearing impaired in the Lee County, Iowa public school system.  From 1975-1977 she was also the supervisor of the Hearing Conservation/Education Services in Ft. Madison, Iowa.  Harper served as a lecturer, supervisor, coordinator, teacher and consultant at the University of Iowa from 1977 until her retirement in 1990.


            Harper’s knowledge and experience placed her on several state and national boards including: the Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf, TRIPOD (support service for hearing impaired individuals and their families), the National Advisory Committee for the Handicapped, the National Planning and Advisory Council for the White House Conference on Handicapped Individuals, the Parent Committee of the Convention of American Instructors of the Deaf, the Iowa Council on Speech, Hearing and Language Disorders, and the National Advisory Group for the National Technical Institute for the Deaf. 


            After being widowed for several years, Harper married Janusz Bardach, a plastic surgeon in 1981.  Janusz Bardach died on August 16, 2002.  Before he died, he received critical success as an author, particularly for his memoirs as a prisoner in the Soviet gulag, Kolyma. 


            Since her retirement in 1990, Harper-Bardach has been active in volunteer activities at area schools and with Speak Up! Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP).  In 1998, Harper-Bardach was one of several Johnson County seniors who received awards from then-Governor Terry Branstad in recognition of their service to nonprofit agencies.



Scope and Content Note


            The Phyllis Harper-Bardach papers date from 1948 to 1998 and measure 18  linear inches.  The papers are arranged in five series: Biography, Professional Life, Correspondence, Photographs, and Artifacts.  The Biography series primarily consists of papers relating to Harper-Bardach’s education, including primary and secondary school, and her post-secondary education at Howard University and the University of Iowa.  Also included in the biography section are three vitae, the most recent one dated 1985.  The biography series concludes with a scrapbook that Harper-Bardach kept on her son Freeman’s education.  Born deaf, Freeman’s educational opportunities and progress were closely monitored by his mother.


            The series, Professional Life, consists of the papers Harper-Bardach kept regarding her teaching career, her participation on state and national boards, conferences and workshops she both participated in and attended, papers she presented and had published, certificates she earned, and various notes, resources, and abstracts she collected.  Of particular interest is her article “A Visible Speech Device” in the Volta Review, 1970, which gained national attention and the various presentations she made regarding parental involvement in the education of hearing impaired children.  Also included in the Professional series are numerous newspaper articles written about Harper-Bardach, her achievements and appointments, and several newspaper articles that she saved pertaining to programs for the deaf.  A small scrapbook contains both journal and newspaper articles that Harper-Bardach preserved.


            The Correspondence series is divided into personal and professional correspondence.  The bulk of the series contains professional correspondence spanning thirty years from 1960-1990.  Also included are thank-you letters, invitations to serve on national committees, including the National Implementation Advisory Council of the White House Conference Action Unit, and letters from parents of deaf children who had either met or heard of Harper-Bardach and her work. 


            Most of the photographs in the Photograph series are of Harper-Bardach working with unidentified children.  Also included is a photograph of Harper-Bardach’s doctoral commencement from the University of Iowa, 1980 and a photograph of Harper-Bardach with then-governor Terry Branstad, receiving the Governor’s Volunteer Award in 1998.


            The Artifacts include memorabilia from Harper-Bardach’s days at Curtis High School in New York.  They include a 1945 yearbook, her letters for softball and basketball, and an athletic medal.  Also included is the 1973 yearbook for the Illinois School for the Deaf, which is dedicated to Harper-Bardach.



Related Collections


Virginia Harper papers

Lois Eichacker papers

Phyllis Harper-Bardach’s first husband was a cousin to Virginia Harper and

Lois Harper Eichacker



Box no.   Description


Box 1      Biography

Vitae, (three different versions), 1985 and undated.

Grade School, 1940-1941

Honor certificates, 1940 and 1941

Diploma, 1941

American Legion Certificate of School Award, 1941

Curtis High School, 1942-1945

Cooperation in government diploma, 1945

Diploma, 1945

Spanish class award, 1945

Scholarship certificates, 1944-1945

Report Card, 1944-1945

Arista papers, 1944

Honor roll letters, 1942, 1944, 1945, and undated

French class certificates of merit, 1944 and 1945

Howard University

Honor Roll, 1945-1948

Scholastic records, 1945-1947

Official Transcript, 1976

Diploma, 1948

College Transcripts, 1958-1973

University of Illinois, 1964, 1973

University of Iowa, 1964, 1966, 1973

Western Illinois University, 1965

MacMurray College, 1973

Teachers College, 1958-1963, 1973

Wagner College, 1959

Culver-Stockton College, 1962

Harper-Bardach’s own handwritten accounting of her college career

University of Iowa Graduate School, 1976-1980

Class schedules, 1978

Plan of study, 1979

Letter of recommendation, 1976

Letter of acceptance, 1976

Congratulations, 1977, 1979

Permanent record cards, 1977-1979

Advanced standing report, 1976

Personal data sheet, 1977

Copy of graduation photo, 1980

                        Dr. William Harper, Jr., 1949-1974 [photocopies - originals held at African American Cultural Center]

                        Condolences for Dr. Harper, 1975

Engagement announcement, 1947

Newspaper article about Dr. Harper, undated

Freeman Harper, 1957-1978

Correspondence regarding Freeman’s schooling, 1958-1978

Newspaper article, 1963

Notebook containing correspondence regarding Freeman’s schooling, 1957-1958


   Professional Life

Quincy Public Schools, 1960-1966

Correspondence, 1960 and 1966

“New Trends in Education” brochure, 1961-1962

Illinois Council for Exceptional Children (ICEC), 1960-1962

Newsletter, 1960

Correspondence, 1960-1962

Convention schedule, 1961

Jacksonville Chapter ICEC, 1967

Mayoral proclamation, 1967

Copy of photograph, 1967

Illinois School for the Deaf, 1973

“Parent-Pupil Education: A Three Dimensional Approach”

Illinois Teachers of the Hearing Impaired (ITHI), 1995

Lifetime membership card with letter, 1995

Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf, 1962-1972 and undated

Correspondence, 1962-1972 (2 folders)

Film program, undated

News release of Harper’s appointment as National Educational Consultant, undated

Agenda for Harper presentation to Lakewood [Ohio] Oral Deaf P.T.A., undated

Hearing Assessment Needs Workshop, 1979

University of Iowa, 1988-1989 and undated    

Student field experiences, undated

Instructional Improvement Grant Proposal, 1989

University of Iowa College of Education brochure, 1988

Announcements of speaking engagements, 1962

Conference and meeting brochures, 1963-1976 and undated

Memos, 1961 and undated

Workshops, 1972-1984

Newsletters, 1964, 1973

Central Institute for the Deaf “News Notes,” 1964

“Keynotes” Division for Exceptional Children North Carolina Department of Education, 1973

Abstracts, undated

“Hearing Impaired Students in Regular Classrooms: A Cognitive Model for Educational Services,” by Waldron, Diebold and Rose

“Educational Outcomes for a K-12 Curriculum” by Sydelle Seiger

Resources, undated

“Guidelines and Resources for Young Hearing-Impaired Children,”   State of Illinois, undated

Directory of Special Education Personnel in State Education Agencies in Indiana and Michigan, undated

Descriptions of specialized training programs sponsored by the Federal Government, undated

Certificates, 1959-1990


Box 2                Presentations

“Sociological Aspects of the Deaf,” 1967

“Accountability,” 1971

“The Role of the Parents,” 1972

“The Parents’ Perspective,” 1972

“Identification-Placement-Then What for Pre-school Black Deaf Children,” 1972

“Personal Perceptions of a Parent and Professional…,” 1975

“Parental Involvement in Deaf/Blind Programs,” 1983

“Big Problems of a Small Day Class Program,” undated

“Parent Involvement in Deaf-Blind Programs,” undated

Articles written by Harper-Bardach

“Affective Needs: A Review of the Literature…,” undated

“A Visible Speech Device,” The Volta Review, 1970

“Making the Elementary Teacher ‘Special,’” Principal, 1990

Articles about Harper-Bardach, 1969-1988

Newspaper clippings

About Harper-Bardach, 1962-1977 and undated

Saved by Harper-Bardach, 1975-1976 and undated

Scrapbook, 1961-1978

Retirement from University of Iowa, 1990

Post-retirement activities, 1996 and 1998


Box 3   Correspondence

Professional correspondence, 1960-1990 and undated (4 folders)

Personal correspondence, 1961-1973 (scattered) and undated

Letters from parents of deaf children, 1961-1972

Thank-you letters, 1963-1998 and undated

Invitations to serve on national committees

National Implementation Advisory Council of the White House Conference Action Unit, undated

National Advisory Committee on Handicapped Children, undated


   Photographs, 1966-1998 and undated



Curtis High School Yearbook, 1945

Curtis High School volleyball and softball letters, undated

Curtis High School athletic medal, undated

Illinois School for the Deaf Yearbook, 1973

[dedicated to Phyllis Harper]



“Developing a Teacher Interview Portfolio” [shelved with videocassettes, V263]

“Interviewing Strategies for Elementary and Middle School Teachers” [shelved with videocassettes,V264]


Oversized [see map case]

Curtis high school honor banner, undated

Certificates and citations, 1975, 1977, 1984, and undated

Governor’s volunteer award, 1998

President Gerald Ford’s proclamation, 1974