The Ruston Academy Records contain materials related to the Ruston Academy, a bilingual American school founded in Havana, Cuba, in 1920. Opened in September, 1920 by educator Hiram Ruston, The Ruston Academy was considered the premiere American school in Latin America. Originally focused on providing an English college-preparatory education for the children of American expatriates in Cuba, it quickly grew into a bilingual academy with a multinational student body. In the 1940s, Ruston expanded to include an elementary school, business preparatory program, basic English classes for Cuban students, and a boarding school, with enrollment measuring at roughly 750 students. After Hiram Ruston’s death in 1946, teacher James Baker took over the school's administration. After Martha Ruston’s death in 1951, James and his wife Sibyl inherited ownership of the school, converting it into an educational non-profit foundation. Ruston Academy was closed down by the Castro government in 1961, its former location having been used as a public school, storage facility, homeless shelter, and military intelligence facility by the Cuban government.
The digital collections feature a full run of Ruston Academy yearbooks from 1940-1960; photographs of the school, teachers and students, and alumni events; several issues of the school newspaper The Rustonian; and ephemera such as theater programs, graduation programs, and promotional materials for student recruitment.