Eleanor Gertrude Brown

Eleanor Gertrude Brown(Photo courtesy of Wikipedia)

Eleanor Gertrude Brown

(August 28, 1887 – July 21, 1964)

Eleanor Gertrude Brown was born and raised in Dayton, Ohio. Blind since infancy, she attended the Ohio State School for the Blind and graduated in 1908.  She attended Ohio State University and in 1914, became the first blind graduate from OSU.  She earned both her Master’s Degree and Doctorate from Columbia University in 1924 and 1934.  

Following her graduation from Ohio State, Brown started work at Steele High School, which was located along the Great Miami River in Dayton.  For forty years, Brown taught sighted students in a variety of subjects – history, English, Latin, and German – and retired from Steele in 1952. In 1960, the Dayton Federation of Women’s Clubs awarded her as the Outstanding Woman of the Year.

Brown was a scholar of John Milton, and based her most famous book, Milton’s Blindness, on her doctoral dissertation. The book is still widely-used by Milton scholars, and its copyright was just reissued by Columbia University Press in 2011.

On July 21, 1964, Brown died from stomach cancer at the age of 76. She is interred at Dayton Memorial Park Cemetery, Section 10, Lot 195, Space 6.  Eleanor Gertrude Brown


  • Milton’s Blindness (1934)
  • Into the Light (1946) (book of poetry)
  • Corridors of Light (1958) (memoir)

For More Information