Helen Anderson Hoff, class of 1923


Helen Anderson Hoff begins her interview by discussing her childhood education in New Jersey and her family background. She explains that a high school superintendent convinced her to apply to Pembroke, making her the first person in her town to attend college. She discusses her experiences in various academic departments and her extracurricular involvement, which centered around the Christian Association. After an unhappy stint teaching, she went on to work for the Young Women’s Christian Association. Hoff describes her favorite teachers at Pembroke as well as her graduate studies at Ohio State University.

Note: the audio quality for this interview is very poor. Please refer to the transcript.

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3


Recorded on October 27, 1987 in Hoff home, Upper Arlington, OH.
Interviewed by Dorcy Baker

Suggested Chicago style citation: Hoff, Helen Anderson. Interview. By Dorcy Baker. Pembroke Center Oral History Project, Brown University. October 27, 1987.


Helen Anderson Hoff grew up in a small town between New Brunswick and Princeton, New Jersey. She was the eldest of ten children and came from an old New Jersey agricultural family. She attended elementary school in a one-room schoolhouse and then commuted by train to high school, where the school superintendent convinced her to apply to college. Hoff began Pembroke in 1919, the first from her town to go to college. At Pembroke College, she studied European History. After marrying in 1928, she obtained a Master’s degree in American History from Ohio State University.