Helga B. Doblin
Helga Doblin, professor emerita of foreign languages, died July, 1, 2005, in Saratoga Springs. She was 94.
Helga came to Skidmore in 1963 to teach German, French, and linguistics; she retired in 1981. A native of Freiburg, Germany, she earned an M.A and Ph.D. in linguistics at Harvard. Her research interest was in the designations of musical instruments in Romance languages. Her dual interest in music and linguistics prompted her to travel widely—to Europe, the Near East, North Africa, Mexico, and Puerto Rico. In fact, she toured England and Denmark as a member of a string quartet. She also made trips to the Amazon and China.
Many in the Skidmore community remember Helga’s key role in establishing the classics department. In recognition of her exceptional teaching and her work in classics, the Skidmore chapter of Phi Beta Kappa elected her to honorary membership in 1978. After her retirement, she was hired by the Saratoga National Historical Park to translate original documents from the American Revolution; she was awarded a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to support that project. She also taught Latin and linguistics at the Great Meadows Correctional Facility, as part of UWW’s Inmate Higher Education Program, and she taught German to students in kindergarten and first grade at Saratoga’s Spring Hill School.
Her husband, Rudi, who taught cello at Skidmore, predeceased her.