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American Annals of the Deaf

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From Pity to Pride: Growing Up Deaf in the Old South

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16. “Annual Report of the Trustees and Officers of the Louisiana Institution for the Education of the Deaf and Dumb, 1869” (Baton Rouge, LA: Printed at the Office of the Institution, 1869), 17; “Fourth Annual Report of the Commissioners of the Georgia Asylum for the Education of the Deaf and Dumb, 1853” (Cave Spring, GA: Georgia Asylum for the Education of the Deaf and Dumb, 1853), 16-18.

17. “Report of the Board of Directors of the Deaf and Dumb Asylum, 1850” (Raleigh: Thomas J. Lemay, Printer to the State, 1850), 8-9; “Annual Report for the Kentucky Institution for the Education of the Deaf and Dumb, 1849,” unpaginated typescript, Volta Bureau; “Twelfth Annual Report of the Officers of the Georgia Institution for the Education of the Deaf and Dumb, 1861,” 10.

18. “Fourth Annual Report of the Commissioners of the Georgia Asylum for the Education of the Deaf and Dumb, 1853,” 18. Perhaps this pattern of adjectives tending to follow nouns grew out of the language Laurent Clerc brought from France, since the French Sign Language of the classroom was partially modeled on spoken/written French which follows the noun-adjective structure. One educator pointed out that it would be easier to teach Deaf pupils French rather than English, “since the construction of its sentences conforms more nearly to the order in which signs naturally place themselves. But of what use would this language be to him in a land where English is spoken?” “Annual Report of the Virginia Institution for the Education of the Deaf and Dumb and the Blind, 1870,” 9.

19. “Annual Report for the Kentucky Institution for the Education of the Deaf and Dumb, 1849,” unpaginated typescript, Volta Bureau.

20. Virginia Trist to Nicholas Trist, 17 April 1836, Nicholas Philip Trist Family Papers, SHC.

21. “Biennial Report . . . of the Missouri Asylum for the Deaf and Dumb, 1855-56” (Jefferson City, MO: J. Lusk, Public Printer, 1856), 21; Harvey P. Peet, “Address Delivered . . . on the Occasion of Laying the Corner Stone of the North Carolina Institution for the Instruction of the Deaf and Dumb,” 34. The annual report continues that sign language was the “medium of intercourse with their friends” and that while writing would be important in educated Deaf people’s adult lives, they would “never lay aside signs as an instrument of communicating . . . ideas” to Deaf friends.

22. “Report of the Virginia Institution for the Deaf and Dumb and the Blind, 1850,” 11. As Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet said, a pupil at a residential school “finds himself, as it were, among his countrymen.” Thomas H. Gallaudet, “The Natural Language of Signs,” American Annals of the Deaf 1, no. 1 (1848), 58.


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