Guide to the Winifred Asprey Papers, circa 1920-2007

Guide to the Winifred Asprey Papers,
circa 1920-2007

Table of Contents


Collection Summary

Repository: Archives and Special Collections Library, Vassar College Libraries
Creator: Asprey, Winifred A.
Title: Winifred Asprey Papers
Dates: circa 1920 - 2007
Quantity: 10 cubic ft (14 boxes)
Abstract: Materials relating to Winifred Asprey's work as a mathmatician and computer scientist, particularly at Vassar College.
Forms of Materials: Correspondence, diaries, scrapbooks and photographs

Biographical Note

Winifred "Tim" Asprey was a mathematician and computer scientist. She taught at Vassar College from 1945-1982. During her tenure, Vassar became one of the first U.S. colleges to establish a computer center and offer courses in computer science.

Asprey was born in Sioux City, Iowa in 1917. She was the daughter of Peter Asprey Jr. and Gladys Brown Asprey, Vassar Class of 1905. She attended Brownell Hall, a preparatory school in Omaha, Nebraska, from 1933-1934, then went to Vassar herself, graduating in 1938. She completed her graduate work at the University of Iowa in 1945 and returned to Vassar that year to teach in the Math Department. She eventually developed an interest in computing, a new specialization in the mathematics field. She was encouraged in this area by Grace Murray Hopper, another Vassar math professor who had gone on to computing fame for her work with the UNIVAC and applications using COBOL. Hopper had left Vassar by the time Asprey returned, but they maintained a close relationship. Asprey even lived in the house that Hopper and her husband built at Vassar.

Asprey's work went beyond Vassar's walls as well. She conducted research at nearby IBM, taught courses at high schools and other colleges (including Marist and SUNY New Paltz), lectured widely, and was active in the field. She retired in 1982, but stayed active in the Vassar community and continued to live in the Hopper house on the edge of campus until her death in 2007 at the age of 90.

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Chronology

8 Apr 1917 Born in Sioux City, IA
1938 B.A. from Vassar College
1942 M.A. from University of Iowa
1945 Ph.D. from University of Iowa
1963 VC Computer Science Center founded
1967 VC purchased IBM System/360 computer
1982 Retired from Vassar
1989 VC's Asprey Advanced Computation Laboratory opened
19 Oct 2007 Died in Poughkeepsie, N.Y.

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Scope and Content Note

Materials relating to Asprey's work as a mathmatician and computer scientist, particularly at Vassar College. Included are biographical materials, research and teaching materials, her writings, and photographs.

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Access and Use

Access

This collection is open for research according to the regulations of the Vassar College Archives and Special Collections Librarywithout any additional restrictions.

Restrictions on Use

Permission to quote (publish) from unpublished or previously published material must be obtained as described in the regulations of the Vassar College Archives and Special Collections Library.

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Related Material

  • For more biographical material see:

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Subject Headings

Names:

  • Hopper, Grace Murray.

Organizations:

  • Brownell Hall, (Omaha, Neb.)
  • Vassar College -- Faculty.
  • Vassar College -- Students.

Subjects:

  • Computer science -- Study and teaching.
  • Mathematics -- Study and teaching.
  • Women mathematicians.
  • Women college teachers.
  • Women computer scientists.

Document Types:

  • Diaries
  • Photographs
  • Scrapbooks

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Encoding Information

Finding aid encoded by Jason Kovari, 3 February 2009. Updated by Laura Streett July 2009 and May 2012.

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Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Winifred Asprey Papers, Archives and Special Collections Library, Vassar College Libraries.

Processing Information

Processed by Laura Streett, 2008. Updated 2012.

Please note: the photographic material in this collection is largely unprocessed. Please contact the archivist for further information.

Acquisition Information

Materials acquired from the Estate of Winifred Asprey, 2007, 2009 and 2012.

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Container List

Box 1 Biography - General
Box 1 Biography - Date Books/Journals
Box 1 Biography - Interview transcripts, 2007
Box 1 Biography - Memorial Service, 2007
Box 12 Biography - Clippings and posters
Box 12 Biography - Clippings of articles by Jonathan W. Brown (Grandfather?)
Box 13 Biography - Scrapbook - Brownell Hall, ca. 1933-1934
Box 13 Biography - Scrapbook - Vassar College, ca. 1934-1938 (3 volumes)
Box 6 Biography - Scrapbook - 90th Birthday, Vassar College, 2007 (1 volume)
Box 13 Biography - Education - Yearbooks (2 volumes)
Box 2 Biography - Parents (Peter and Gladys Asprey)
Box 1 Biography - Travel
Box 2 Biography - Parents (Peter and Gladys Asprey)
Box 1 Correspondence
Box 3 Writings and speeches
Box 4, 11 Research and teaching material
Box 2, 3 Vassar College
Box 14 Vassar College - Asprey Advanced Computation Laboratory plaque
Box 6 Vassar College - Asprey Advanced Computation Laboratory Guestbook, 22 Apr 1989
Box 6 Vassar College - Clark Symposium Guestbook, Apr 1997
Box 2 Grace Hopper
Box 2 Larned B. Asprey (brother)
Box 2 Charitable work
Box 8, 12 Photographs - Portraits of Asprey
Box 2 Photographs - Albums (4 albums)
Box 6 Photographs - Albums (3 albums)
Box 14 Photographs - Albums (4 albums)
Box 7-10 Photographs - Miscellaneous Prints
Box 5 Photographs - Slides
Box 6 Photographs - Clark Symposium, Apr 1997 (1 disk)
Box 6 Photographs - Vassar Reunion, 2004 (1 disk)
Box 6 Photographs - Scans for 90th birthday (3 disks)
Box 6 Photographs - Scans for Memorial Service, 2007 (1 disk)
Box 11 Photographs - Lists
Box 5 Audio tapes
Box 6 Video - Asprey's remarks at Clark Symposium, Apr 1997 (1 disk)

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