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American School for the Deaf Oldest School for the Deaf in America

Page history last edited by Whitney Bryant 15 years ago

American School for the Deaf

Oldest School for the Deaf in America

Figure 1. Asylum (1817). Note: Copyright American School for the Deaf (2005.)

 

 

American School for the Deaf is highly regarded in the Deaf Community. The school is considered the predecessor to the modern day state residential school. It also established a pattern for deaf education, which continued until after the civil war.

Mason Fitch Cogswell, the political and finical founder of the American School for the deaf, started the process of opening a school by conducting a survey in 1812 on how many deaf were in Connecticut. The surveyed turned out there were 84 deaf persons in the state, non which were education, thus establishing the need for a school. To open a school they need two things. They need money and someone who knew methods and ways of teaching deaf students. In 1815 Cogswell and several partners started to raise money to open the school. They also needed a person know methods of teaching deaf children, so they sent Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet to Europe to do such a task. He spent seven months in France learning their methods. Upon returning to America, Gallaudet contracted the services of Laurent Clerc to come back to Connecticut with him to help open the new school. On April 15, 1817 Connecticut Asylum at Hartford for the Instruction of Deaf and Dumb Persons was opened (late the name was changed to American School for the Deaf.) The first student was Alice Cogswell (Mason Fitch Cogswell’ daughter,) Gallaudet was the first principal, and Clerc was the first teacher.

 

Resources

About ASD (2005.) Retrieved July 3, 2009 from American School for the Deaf Website:

http://www.asd-1817.org/about/index.html

 

Cleve, J.V.V., & Crouch, B.A.  (1989). A Place of Their Own: Creating the Deaf

Community in America. Washington, DC: Gallaudet University Press.

 

Gannon, J.R. (1981.) Deaf Heritage: A Narrative History of Deaf America. Silver

Springs, MD: National Association of the Deaf

             

Hartford Area Sites Important to the History of Deaf Education (n.d.) Retrieved July 3, 2009

from American School for the Deaf Website: http://www.asd-1817.org/history/hartford_history.pdf

 

Museum/History (2005) Retrieved July 3, 2009 from American School for the Deaf Website:

http://www.asd-1817.org/history/index.html

 

 

Submitted by Whitney Bryant July 3, 2009

 

 

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