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Butler Digital History

Eliza Blaker

Eliza A. Blaker

Eliza Blaker (1854-1926) came to Indianapolis in 1882 to teach kindergarten at a private academy. With her roots in a Quaker family, Blaker believed in helping people through education. She left this first job in order to serve a more diverse community. She chose instead to work for the Indianapolis Free Kindergarten and Children’s Aid Society, where she would work with underprivileged children. As Blaker remarked, these kindergartens provided students an “opportunity to get a fair start in life; in fact, to feed the soul and, where necessary, to feed and clothe the physical body.” Blaker hoped to create for these youth an environment “in which the little one is happy, is harmoniously developed, and learns to think and act as a reasonable being endowed with a high destiny.”

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Eliza Blaker