Thursday, June 01, 2006

Helen Keller

Helen Keller

On June 1, 1968, Helen Keller dies in Westport, Connecticut, at the age of 87. Blind and deaf from infancy, Keller circumvented her disabilities to become a world-renowned writer and lecturer.
Helen Adams Keller was born on June 27, 1880, on a farm near Tuscumbia, Alabama. A normal infant, she was stricken with an illness at 19 months, probably scarlet fever, which left her blind and deaf. For the next four years, she lived at home, a mute and unruly child. Special education for the blind and deaf was just beginning at the time, and it was not until after Helen's sixth birthday that her parents had her elxamined by an eye physician interested in the blind. He referred the Kellers to Alexander Graham Bell, the inventor of the telephone and a pioneer in teaching speech to the deaf. Bell examined Helen and arranged to have a teacher sent for her from the Perkins Institution for the Blind in Boston.

Helen Keller and Dr. Alexander Graham Bell

"I do not want the peace which passeth understanding, I want the understanding which passeth understanding. I want the understanding which bringeth peace." Helen Keller on education

Helen Keller and Anne Sullivan

"My life has been happy because I have had wonderful friends and plenty of interesting work to do," Helen Keller once wrote, adding, "I seldom think about my limitations, and they never make me sad. Perhaps there is just a touch of yearning at times, but it is vague, like a breeze among flowers. The wind passes, and the flowers are content."

Helen Keller and Mark Twain

"No pessimist ever discovered the secret of the stars or sailed an uncharted land, or opened a new doorway for the human spirit." and "Many persons have the wrong idea of what constitutes true happiness. It is not attained through self-gratification but through fidelity to a worthy purpose." Helen Keller

In 1900, Helen Keller was accepted into Radcliffe, a prestigious women's college in Cambridge with classes taught by Harvard University faculty. She was a determined and brilliant student, and while still at Radcliffe her first autobiography, The Story of My Life, was published serially in The Ladies Home Journal and then as a book. In 1904, she graduated cum laude from Radcliffe. Keller became an accomplished writer, publishing, among other books, The World I Live In (1908), Out of the Dark (1913), My Religion (1927), Helen Keller's Journal (1938), and Teacher (1955)

This photograph from 1961 shows Helen visiting President John F. Kennedy in the White House. The two are seated with Helen's secretary Evelyn D. Seide; a few Presidential aides are standing nearby. Everyone is smiling, including Helen, who is explaining something to the President.

"When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us." Helen Keller

With that being said, Today I am grateful for;

  • My sight~The ability to see the world as it truly is, wonderful!
  • My ears~ Not just for "hearing" but for truly listening.
  • Speech~ Having the wisdom to keep my mouth shut. Slience can speak volumes!
  • The ability to smell and taste the spices of life!
  • My job. Enough said.
  • For my friend Donna, the Queen of the one Pot Meal!

What are you grateful for?

N Posted by Rain at 6/01/2006 12:15:00 AM


  • Blogger Rain posted at 1:45 AM  
    For some unknown reason my links are not working properly.
    Here they are just in case...

    Have a great day! ~Rain
  • Blogger TECH posted at 9:53 AM  
    What an amazing woman she was. Makes ashamed that I don't do more with all that I have when she did so much with so little.

    Nice blog! :)
  • Blogger Sheila posted at 2:58 PM  
    When I was young I read "Helen Keller's Teacher" by Margaret Davidson. I was deeply moved by this story and it left me with weeks of contemplation ; how this could be possible? A girl, a woman that can survive and blossom in such a coccoon. I think what her story did for me most was to enable a real sense of empathy for anyone who is different or challenged. What was great about your post was that I was unaware of the people that she visited and inspired (I had no idea about Alexander Graham Bell for example). When someone is given all these limitations perhaps its only then that they see life as limitless.
  • Blogger lime posted at 5:24 AM  
    i came here via brian's blog. helen keller has been one of my heroes since childhood. thank you for this wonderful post.

    i have many things to be thankful for even in light of recent serious injuries. i was blessed with excellent doctors and therapists. i was not injured more seriously. my children were spared and many people have been so generous with help.

    may i leave you with on of my favorite quotes of hers...
    'the world is full of suffering. the world is also full of the overcoming of suffering.'
  • Anonymous restless angel posted at 9:26 AM  
    I just read The Story of My Life recently. She was an amazing woman, and has always fascinated me. I didn't know that she had written more books, however. I might just have to go looking for them someday soon! This was a great post!! (I also came from Brian's blog)
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