University of Chicago Library

Guide to the Chicago Institute: Academic and Pedagogic Records 1900-1901

© 2020 University of Chicago Library

Descriptive Summary


Chicago Institute: Academic and Pedagogic. Records




5 linear feet (8 boxes)


Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center
University of Chicago Library
1100 East 57th Street
Chicago, Illinois 60637 U.S.A.


The Chicago Institute: Academic and Pedagogic was established by Francis W. Parker in 1900, eventually becoming the University Of Chicago School Of Education. The collection includes announcements, building plans, publications, reports, records, correspondence, meeting notes, and logistical paperwork from the Institute. Materials date from 1900 to 1901.

Information on Use


The collection is open for research.


When quoting material from this collection, the preferred citation is: Chicago Institute: Academic and Pedagogic. Records, [Box #, Folder #], Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library

Historical Note

Francis Wayland Parker (October 9, 1837 – March 2, 1902) was born in Bedford, New Hampshire in Hillsborough County. He was educated in the public schools and began his career as a village teacher in New Hampshire at age 16. Parker was a pioneer of the progressive school movement in the United States. He believed that education should include the complete development of an individual-mental, physical, and moral.

In August 1861, at the beginning of the American Civil War, Parker enlisted as a private in the 4th New Hampshire Volunteer Infantry. He was elected lieutenant and was later promoted to captain and commander of the company. He was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and commander of the 4th New Hampshire in January 1865. He was captured and held prisoner in North Carolina in May, 1865.

After the war ended, Colonel Parker resumed teaching, first in Ohio where he became the head of the normal school in Dayton, Ohio. In 1872, he traveled to Germany to study at the University of Berlin.

In 1875, Parker was named superintendent of schools in Quincy, Massachusetts. There he developed the Quincy Plan, which eliminated harsh discipline and de-emphasized rote memorization, replacing them with elements of progressive education such as group activities, the teaching of the arts and sciences, and informal methods of instruction. He continued to implement his theories as superintendent of Boston's public schools (1880–83), as principal of the Cook County Normal School, Chicago (1883–99), and as founder and principal (1899–1901) of the Chicago Institute.

The Chicago Institute, a distinctly progressive school following in the footsteps of the Cook County Normal School, sought to develop students not merely in expansive academic study, but also more abstractly in the kind of personal concentration and interests education allowed them to cultivate. It placed a high value on individuals working intensively in community, making this the primary goal of the Institute. The Chicago Institute contained three distinct programs: the Academic, the Pedagogic, and the Summer School. The Academic School provided an intensive and well-rounded elementary and secondary education for students ages four to eighteen. The Pedagogic School provided professional training to student teachers. The Summer School with its open admission policy as well as a variety of open courses during the academic year sought to provide the academic resources of the Institute to the broader public.

The Chicago Institute became the University Of Chicago School Of Education in 1901 after being open independently for one full academic year.

Scope Note

The Chicago Institute, Academic and Pedagogic records are organized into five series: Series I: The Institute - General; Series II: Academics; Series III: The Student Body; Series IV: Beyond the Classroom; and Series V: Oversized.

Series I contains information regarding the logistics, establishment, and vision of the school. Series II details the academic curriculum and student activities. Series III includes student records and enrolment paperwork. Series IV includes information regarding the school museum and journal The Course of Study, both initiatives beyond mere classroom study. Series V contains bound volumes of The Course of Study and school records.

Related Resources

The following related resources are located in the Department of Special Collections:

Browse finding aids by topic.

Parker, Francis Wayland. Papers

William Rainey Harper. Papers

Correspondence of the Secretary of the Board of Trustees, 1890-1913

Presidents' Papers, 1889-1925

Rollin D. Salisbury. Papers

Subject Headings


Series I: The Institute - General

This Series contains materials relating to the vision and establishment of the Institute, including announcements, building plans, maps, reports, salary data, meeting notes, and faculty correspondence.

Box 1    Folder 1

Preliminary Announcement

Box 1    Folder 2

Maps of Chicago Institute in the City

Box 1    Folder 3

Reports to the Board of Trustees

Box 1    Folder 4


Box 1    Folder 5

Dean of School, 1900-1901

Box 1    Folder 6

Salaries, 1900-1901

Box 1    Folder 7

Faculty Correspondence

Box 1    Folder 8

Meeting Notes and Notices

Box 1    Folder 9

Faculty - Miscellaneous

Series II: Academics

This Series includes information on the curriculum and courses offered at the Institute during the academic year and the summer term, as well as academic reports, course materials, teaching equipment, and materials relating to extracurricular activities and events.

Subseries 1: Curriculum, 1900-1901

Box 1    Folder 10

Morning Exercises - Records, 1900-1901

Box 1    Folder 11

Curriculum - General, 1900-1901

Box 1    Folder 12

Course Catalog, 1900-1901

Box 1    Folder 13

Academic Reports

Box 1    Folder 14

Extra Curricular

Subseries 2: Summer School, 1900

Box 2   Folder 1

Daily Program and Course Descriptions, 1900

Box 2   Folder 2

Dean’s Report to the President, July 2, 1900 - August 10, 1900

Subseries 3: Events and Field Trips, 1900-1901

Box 2   Folder 3

Field Committee, 1900

Box 2   Folder 4

Committee on Entertainment and Parent’s Meetings, 1901

Box 2   Folder 5

Event Programs, 1900-1901

Subseries 4: Course Materials, 1900-1901

Box 2   Folder 6

Teaching Equipment- Catalogues and Requests, 1900-1901

Box 2   Folder 7

Course Notes and Syllabi, 1900-1901

Series III: The Student Body

The Series includes materials concerning enrolment and tuition, as well as records regarding the members of the student body at their time of entrance into the Institute, with some progress reports from throughout the year.

Subseries 1: Enrollment and Tuition, 1900-1901

Box 2   Folder 8

Enrollment Application - blank, 1900

Box 2   Folder 9

Tuition Notice, 1901

Subseries 2: Student Records, 1900

Box 2    Folder 10

Matriculation Records I, 1900

Box 2    Folder 11

Matriculation Records II, 1900

Box 2    Folder 12

Matriculation Records III, 1900

Box 2    Folder 13

Student Language Records, 1900-1901

Subseries 3: Student Reports, 1900-1901

Box 2   Folder 14

Registration and Attendance Reports, 1900-1901

Box 2   Folder 15

Report on 9th Grade Students, 1900-1901

Series IV: Beyond the Classroom

This Series contains materials relating to two unique academic initiatives of the Chicago Institute: the School Museum, which included a variety of natural specimens to be used in conjunction with the school library, as well as The Course of Study, an academic journal out of the Institute.

Subseries 1: The Museum, 1900-1901

Box 2   Folder 16

Museum - Organization and General, 1900-1901

Box 2   Folder 17

Lists of Birds and Mammals, 1900

Subseries 2: Course of Study - Journal, 1900-1901

Box 3   Folder 1

Reports and Correspondence, 1900-1901

Box 3   Folder 2

Course of Study, Vol.1. N.1, 1900

Box 3   Folder 3

Course of Study, Vol.1. N. 2-4, 1900

Box 3   Folder 4

Course of Study, Vol.1. N.5, 7, and 8, 1901

Box 3   Folder 5

Course of Study, Vol.1. N.9-10, 1901

Box 4

Course of Study, Vol.1, 1900-1901

Series V: Oversized

Box 5

Students Matriculated, 1900

Box 6   Folder 1

Students Matriculated, 1900

Box 6   Folder 2

Empty Index Book, 1900

Box 7   Folder 1

Pedagogic School Records. I, 1900

Box 7   Folder 2

Pedagogic School Records. II, 1900

Box 8

Index, 1900.