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Elisabeth Amen Papers

Identifier: SMC-096

Scope and Content

This small manuscript collection includes Dr. Elisabeth Amen's correspondence, professional documents, publications, pay information, and diary. It covers 1925-1968.

It includes correspondence regarding the psychology department, the nursery school, and Dr. Amen's relationships with colleagues. Much of the correspondence is between Dr. Amen and the president's office. It includes notes on interviews between Dr. Amen and President J. Edgar Park, as well as correspondence between Dr. Park and his professional colleagues concerning his dealings with Dr. Amen. Some letters allude to possible lapses Dr. Amen's own psychological well-being.

The collection includes documents regarding her housing amd pay information. Her diary, from 1940, chronicles her travels, although she does not write entries on a daily basis. A copy of her resume is included in the collection as well. It also includes copies of her publications "A Study of the Relationship Between Play Patterns and Anxxiety in Young Children," which she wrote in 1954 with Nancy Renison, and "A Continuation Study of Anxiety Reactions in Young Children By Means of a Projective Technique," which she wrote in 1947 with Margaret Dorkey. A book review accompanies these publications. The collection also contains clippings that cover her professional achievements and death.


  • 1925-1968



Elisabeth Amen was born in Poughkeepsie, New York in 1885 to Harlan P. Amen and Mary Rawson Amen. Her father was the headmaster of Phillips-Exeter Academy, which she attended. She had a brother, John Harlan Amen, who married Marion Cleveland, the daughter of Grover Cleveland, and a sister, Margaret R. Amen Robinson. Dr. Amen graduated with her bachelor's degree in 1907 and her masters in 1923 from Vassar College. Miss Amen worked as an instructor at the Baldwin School in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania from 1907 until 1913 and held administrative roles at Radcliffe College from 1914-1923. She received her Ph.D. from Radcliffe in 1925 and started teaching at Wheaton as a psychology professor during the same year. Professor Amen was named Chairman of the department in 1926 and stayed in this position until 1952, also earning the title of "professor emeritus." Her specialty was in child development and she founded the Wheaton College Nursery School in 1931 and the building was named in her honor in 1967. She was a member of many psychology associations and published articles in the Genetic Psychology Monographs and New York Herald Tribune. She died 19 January 1968.


0.5 Cubic Feet (5 folders)

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Separated Materials

Two photographs of Miss Amen can be found with the Faculty Files photographs.
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Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Marion B. Gebbie Archives and Special Collections Repository

Wheaton College
26 East Main Street
Norton Massachusetts 02766