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This collection contains documents from the Leonard A. Robinson collection with emphasis on his role in the Randolph-Sheppard Act of 1936.

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Leonard A. RobinsonCollection Location: The National Federation of the Blind, Baltimore, Maryland

Collection Overview: Leonard A. Robinson (1904-1980) was a lawyer and advocate for the blind who worked for the Vocational Rehabilitation Service in the District of Columbia. Blind since the age of eleven, Robinson graduated from Western Reserve University Law School in 1929 and was admitted to the Ohio Bar in the same year. Robinson, in collaboration with Representative Jennings Randolph of West Virginia and Senator Morris Sheppard of Texas, drafted the original bill that eventually became known as the Randolph-Sheppard Act of 1936. Robinson started working for the Federal Government in 1938 as assistant to the supervisor of the vending stand program. After serving as a case worker for the Department of Vocational Rehabilitation for almost a decade, Robinson was promoted to Director of Blind Services, a position he held from 1947 until his retirement in 1971. After retiring from government service, Robinson focused on charitable activities and, through the Foundation for the Elderly and Handicapped, Inc., was able to raise the funds necessary to establish a low-vision clinic at the George Washington University Medical Center. Robinson published an autobiographical account of the Randolph-Sheppard Act in 1975 titled, Light at the Tunnel End.

This exhibit highlights the life and career of Robinson’s work to develop services for the blind. The collection contains letters and photographs spanning the years 1927 to 1975 with special attention placed on Robinson’s personal successes, and his continued role in the success of the Randolph-Sheppard Act.

For more information, please visit:

Finding Aid, The Leonard A. Robinson Collection, 1927-1990

The Cane Tip (Archon web portal)

Jacobus tenBroek Library

National Federation of the Blind

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