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Helen Gould collection of Purdue dance cards and theater programs

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSA 294

Scope and Contents

The collection consists of 41 dance cards, four theater programs and seven Purdue related ephemera and miscellaneous memorabilia from Helen Gould's tenure are a Purdue student, 1922-1926.


  • 1922 - 1926
  • Other: Majority of material found within 1923 - 1924


Language of Materials

Collection material is in English.

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Copyright and Use Information

Material in this collection is in the public domain.

Biographical and Historical Information

Helen Gould was a Purdue University student from 1922-1926, as indicated in the Debris yearbook. Little more is known about her. Her dance cards and theater programs reflect the many dances and performances she attended as a Purdue student.

A dance card was used by a woman to record the names of the gentlemen with whom she intended to dance each successive dance at a formal ball, and it listed all the dances for the evening. Opposite each dance is a space to record the name of the partner for the dance. They appear to have originated in the 18th century, but their use first became widespread in the 19th century Vienna, especially at the massive balls during Fasching before Lent.

A dance card is typically a booklet with a decorative cover, indicating the sponsoring organization of the ball and a decorative cord by which it could be attached to a lady's wrist or ball gown. As in Gould's case, they are often kept as souvenirs of the evening.


0.545 Cubic Feet (One letter-size full-width manuscript box and one letter-size half-width manuscript box)


The collection has been arranged into three series, and the items have been placed in chronological order within each.
  1. Dance Cards
  2. Theater Programs
  3. Purdue Related Ephemera and Miscellaneous Memorabilia

Acquisition Information

Source and date of acquisition are unknown.

Processing Information

All materials have been housed in acid-free folders and acid-free boxes. Where warranted, polyester sleeves have been used for preservation purposes.


Helen Gould collection of Purdue dance cards and theater programs
Under Review
Mary A. Sego
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Edition statement
Second edition. Collection description first completed 2014-05-14.

Repository Details

Part of the Purdue University Archives and Special Collections Repository

504 Mitch Daniels Boulevard
West Lafayette Indiana 47907 United States