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Harry Lang collection on Robert Panara

 Collection — Carton: 1
Identifier: RITDSA-0054

Scope and Contents

The Harry Lang collection on Robert Panara includes original materials from Panara as well as correspondence and articles Lang collected while researching the book, Teaching from the Heart and Soul: The Robert F. Panara Story (Washington, D.C.: Gallaudet University Press, 2007). Other materials include notes, student newspaper articles, and class reports from Panara's years at Gallaudet; and articles, books, and programs regarding the national Theatre of the Deaf. A small amount of documentation covers Panara's personal life, including his family and a biography.


  • Creation: 1934-2003


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to researchers.

Biographical Information: Harry Lang and Robert Panara

Dr. Harry Lang attended the Western Pennsylvania School for the Deaf, earned a BS in Physics from Bethany College, a MS degree in Electrical Engineering from Rochester Institute of Technology, and his doctorate in Education from the University of Rochester. Lang has taught at National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID) since 1969, first in the Physics Department, and later as a faculty member in the Master of Science Program in Secondary Education of Students Who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing.

He is also a prolific author, including Edmund Booth: A Deaf Pioneer, Teaching from the Heart and Soul: The Robert F. Panara Story, andDeaf Persons in the Arts and Sciences: A Biographical Dictionary (co-authored with Bonnie Meath-Lang). The dictionary includes 150 biographies of deaf scientists, artists, engineers, actors, writers, poets, and other professionals. In 2006, Lang was awarded the Rochester Institute of Technology Trustees Scholarship Award in recognition of establishing an outstanding record of academic scholarship.

About Robert Panara

The first Deaf faculty member at NTID, and a key figure in its history, Robert Panara was hired in 1967 to assist in establishing NTID on RIT's campus. He was instrumental in planning NTID's curriculum and preparing RIT's staff with ASL classes. He taught English at NTID and founded the Drama Club in 1970, which has grown into a full performing arts program with numerous productions yearly in the theater at NTID named in his honor. It was at the celebration of NTID's 20th anniversary in 1988 that the Robert F. Panara Theatre was dedicated.

Panara is recognized as one of the founders of the National Theatre of the Deaf. He was the only deaf member of the National Advisory Board, and the first NTID faculty member. He was also awarded the RIT Founders Award for his lifetime of achievement and devoted service to RIT. Panara retired from NTID in 1987. Robert Panara died in 2014 at the age of 94.


1.5 Linear Feet (1 carton)




The Harry Lang collection on Robert Panara consists of Lang's research files used in writing his book, Teaching From the Heart and Soul: The Life and Work of Robert F. Panara.


Collection materials are roughly arranged by subject.

Other Finding Aids

In addition to this finding aid, an inventory is available below. For more information, please contact the RIT Archive Collections.

Harry Lang collection on Robert Panara

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Accession number(s): 07:90

Processing Information

Finding aid created by Amy Vilz in October 2011.

Harry Lang collection on Robert Panara
RIT/NTID Deaf Studies Archive
Amy Vilz
24 October 2011
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the RIT Archives Repository

Rochester NY 14623 USA