Elaine Barbara Frank, class of 1939


In this interview, Elaine Frank ’39, the daughter of a Providence-born father and Lithuanian-born mother, describes herself as a “City Girl” and discusses her decision to attend Pembroke College as a transfer student from LaSalle Junior College. She details her involvement in various dramatic societies at Hope High School, Pembroke, and throughout Rhode Island. Frank also recalls her Pembroke gym teacher, Bessie Rudd, and Dean Margaret Shove Morriss, as well as coeducational and single-sex classes on both the Pembroke and Brown campuses. In addition to her reminiscences of life on campus, Frank also discusses her life as a teacher at the Meeting Street School, Henry Barnard Laboratory School, and Rhode Island College.


Recorded on March 28, 2017 in Pembroke Hall, Brown University, Providence, RI
Interviewed by Jane Lancaster

Suggested Chicago style citation: Frank, Elaine Barbara. Interview. By Jane Lancaster. Pembroke Center Oral History Project, Brown University. March 28, 2017.


Elaine Frank grew up in Providence, Rhode Island and attended Hope High School. She graduated from LaSalle Junior College and transferred to Pembroke where she received her A.B. in English Literature in 1939. She was an assistant professor in English at Brown from 1944 – 1945 and later obtained a master’s degree in education from Boston University. She began working as a speech therapist at Meeting Street School while doing the same at Henry Barnard Laboratory School, and working as an assistant professor at Rhode Island College. Meeting Street School eventually hired her full time and she stayed there for 25 years. Frank was the mother of three, grandmother of seven, and great grandmother of eight. She died on September 23, 2016 at the age of 99.