Description


This is a hand written signature of Helen Keller. She would use a ruler to assist her so that she could write in a straight line, writing up against the rulers edge. Notice this is printed writing not cursive writing. Cursive would have allowed for continual movement. Printing would have required her to stop and start for each letter, yet the letters are uniquely spaced and individual. This framed collection has her handwritten signature and pictures of herself and her teacher Anne Sullivan.

History and interesting aspects of Helen Keller’s life.

Helen Keller was born with her senses of sight and hearing, and started to speak when she was just 6 months old. She was walking by the age of 1. Helen Keller contracted an illness—called “brain fever” that produced a high body temperature. Some believe it might have been scarlet fever or meningitis. A few days after the fever broke, Helen’s mother noticed that her daughter didn’t show any reaction when she would wring the dinner bell, or when movement like a hand was in front of her face. Helen had had lost both her sight and her hearing from the illness. She was 19 months old when this occurred..

As Keller grew,she became friends with Martha daughter to their family’s cook. The two created their own type of sign language, and used more than 60 signs to communicate to each other. Helen had many episodes of anger and times of acting out when angry, often times screaming and kicking, and at the opposite end of that would giggle uncontrollably when she was happy. Because of her raging tantrums many relatives believed her mother should have her institutionalized. This brought her mother, who would never give up on helping her, to search for ways to best help. After reading “American Notes” by Charles Dickens she learned of another deaf and blind child that had been educated quite successfully, which brought Helen to Alexander Graham Bell who was working with deaf children at the time. He was able to connect Helen with long time friend and teacher Anne Sullivan. Helen attended speech school and spent 25 years working on her speech so that others might be able to understand her. Helen used several methods to communicate with others, including braille.She met many people who became friends, including Mark Twain, who introduced her to a friend that was so impressed with her perseverance, that he paid for her to attend Radcliffe College. Anne Sullivan attended classes there with Helen helping her and they continued their teacher pupil relationship for 49 years until Annes death. Helen received many honors for her accomplishments throughout her life, including honorary doctoral decrees from many well known universities around the world.