The Ladd School


The Ladd School

A 1937 Stanford-Binet intelligence testing kit.

Stanford-Binet Intelligence Measures



“In the old days, if they caught you on a street corner sucking your thumb and could catch you with a net, you had it."

Idiots, Imbeciles, and Morons

In the early part of the previous century, there were multiple ways a person could be indentified as feeble-minded and, consequently, admitted or committed to an place like the Ladd School.

Whereas voluntary admissions to such insitutions usually resulted from an application on behalf of a minor or dependent by a parent or legal guardian, involuntary commitments were typically initiated by law enforcement officials and endorsed by the signed testimony of two licensed physicians at a public court hearing. But by far, the most damning evidence was brought about through the evaluation of a psychometric test.

Invented by French psychologist Alfred Binet in 1905 and revised in 1916 by Lewis Terman at Stanford University in California, the Stanford-Binet Intelligence Measures was designed to determine an individual's mental age and assign to that person one of three clinical distinctions of feeble-mindedness: Idiot, Imbecile, or Moron.

Procured from a private seller in Iowa, our second-edition 1937 Stanford Binet, Form L, is complete and in near-perfect condition. The kit consists of more than 40 pieces ranging from beads and blocks to toys and other trinkets, including a full set of flashcards for identifying shapes, vocabulary words, and visual absurdities; a hardcover instruction book; a paper doll; and a test blank, all enclosed in a slide-top wooden box.


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