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Annual reports of the officers of state of the State of Indiana online

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should be both comprehensive in their provisions, and liberally con-
strued; that persons of all portions of the Commonwealth niay
be equally benefitted. Every MiUe who may be ben^Ued ttUhmU
injury to the Instiiuiiont should be admitted. No person should be
refused admission on the ground of too great age, if his reception
would come within purview of the principle just recited. After
Viany years constant hUerceurae with Mules, studying tiieir charac*
fers, mental babils, the aaode of their Instruction, their tempeia-
medts, capabilities for aoqoiria^ etc, I candidly confiBis my utiaff
inabltlty to fix an opward limit of age, beyond wfaiofa no one aboiid
be received.-«nd under wMoh all of good nnndaskoukl be.tae^o.
An enkrged epirit of benevoleiioe wonkl seefi to say, **JLet all, if
poesible, have a trial;'* The casis of a poor, uneducated Mate, paae>
ing' through life, dragging out the kmg days, monthi, aad yeais of
wearisome existence, an alien in his father's house, and a stral^gBr
amilng fait' own kindnd, kaowhig aot the joyi of social iatercourae,
tbe kindly sympathies of Iriends, tbe hopes of heaven, or the terroia



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Iff a eomliig judgment, deeqoing himself ^nd the huiaan race, but la
the brutes that perisb» his case, I say, is too piteous to be condemned
with a crowd unheard, merely because bis age, ^y a few days ey«
ceeds the period fixed by a senseless, though unalterable law, for his
feception of the advantages, the {positive bliss of an education.

The near approach of the time when some of our pupils are to
leave the walls of the happy Asylnm, to return no more, reminds
me of a duty I would not fail to perform, in bespeaking for them,
from the citizens of the State, the same kindly interest in their wel-
fare which has been shown towards them during their continuance
here. Nor can I feel when the appeal is made to a people so pro-
verbial for their kindness to the Mute, as are those of Indiana, that
my words, however short the^ may come of placing the matter in
its true light, will fall utterly unregarded. Attached as we become
as Instructors and Officers of the Asylian to our Pupils, during their
DDatinnaQoe with us, conscious as we are, of the many trials and
temptations to which they will besulgect, we may wf^ll be permitted
tp daim iodulge&ce upon this point.

Let it be remembered, that our Pupils leave our care when not
men and women, but when, so far as most are concerned, mere chil-
dren. It is true, their physical systems are in most cases, nearly
developed, when their course here is ended. Biit they have little
experience in the ways of the world, in its conventional forms, or in
its more minute rules of propriety. The principles of the moral
law, they of course, understand; and they will, in general, be found
very careful in regard to infringing upon the rights of others. Still
they must not be expected to conduct themselves on all occasions,
with all that scrupulous punctilio which marks the intercourse of the
0K)8t refined society. Usually kind-hearted and affectionate, they«
ataad in little danger of wanting for friends among their most inti-
Aiate aoqnaintances, but they may kek needful sympathy, in the
oipre extended eivofe of those who only parlially know them.
Though aaiong those with whom they are daily asMciated, they gM^
erally find friends, still they meet thoae who but illy deserve that
Ultfe. Thoughtless persons who wiU amuse themselves by laughing al
their errors, taunting them for their mistakes, or who will seek most
«ruel delight in provoking their anger, are their moat dangerous aa-
•oeiates. From such assodations tl|e friends of educated Mutei



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diould draw them, as from consuming fire. Hie person who wodkl
thos treat an unfortunate Mute, has but little sense, or a most malig-
nantly cruel heart. Let such a person know, let the community in
which such a transaction occurs know, that this kind of treatment
inflicts an injury on the poor Mute which it may be impossiUe to
repair. Having but little intercouxBe with the world, he broods over
bis wrong, unchecked by the reascming of others, until his passions
rise to a fearful height To the injury or insult, his excited feelings
add a thousand aggravating circumstances; and, he imagines himself
the victim of premeditated and inexcusable injustice. How much
more humane, bow much more like carrying out the golden rule,
** Whatsoever ye would that men should do unto you, do ye even so
to them,'' would it be, to win the (confidence of the lovely unfortu-
nate by kindness, and lead him by judicious and gentle influences, in
the path of happiness and peace.

Again, let me respectfiitly entrett the moral and reiigioue, on ail
occasions to admhiister a kind reproof, when a Deaf Mute departs
from the path of rectitude to do any wrong. Atxnistomed as he is,
while here, to respect virtue, and abhor vice, a chord may easily be
found to which bis whole soul and being will vibrate. On« wrong
act should not cause you to give up the attempt to benefit him. If
there was ever a truth of Holy Writ exemplified, it is this in the life
of a Mute : ^Train up a child in the way he should go, and when
he is old, he will not forsake it." However far he may have gone,
his school instructions will not, cannot be forgotten. They form a
foundation upon which the superstructure of morality and virtue may
be secured; and let not the moral and the pious give over their eflbrts
to win the wanderer back. .

Again, there is danger, that the Deaf and Dumb may, on leaving
school, form the habit of spending the sabbath improperly. As wbiis
they are at church they understand little of what b going on, soms
are apt to choose the company of those who will conTerse wilk
them, whether good, or bad. Thns, they may be led far away from
religious, not to say moral influences; and the most disastrous cod>
sequences may follow. Fully aware of the danger to which they
lire to be exposed upon this point, the ofllcers of this Asylum faavs
tried to impress <hi the minds of the pupils a due r^ard for the saoe>
ity of the Sabbath, and the importance of their attending some placi



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of wmbip on that day, reading proper boobt; and if society is soughtt
the necasity of anoctating vith the moral and the good. Let as
then* respeetfnny entreat those who feel an interest in them, to look
titer tfam welfare in these important particulars.

Upon 119 class of penoos does the kind of books which they read
exercise nich an influence as on the educated Deaf and Dumb. £x-
clodedy to so great an extent, from the society g[ others, the (Mrocest
of conversation by writing or spelling on the fingem being so sloVf
books which they can understand are read with the greatest satisfac-
tion. Reading supplies the lack of conversation; and well worn
volumes fill the places of cheerful companions. Who would expect
a youth spendmg most of his time in the company of felons, to be a
virtuous omamdttt of sodetyt It is just as futile to expect a mute
who daily reads improper or vicious books, to become an honorable,
and useful citiaen. Parents, guardians, and friends should be ex-
ceedingly guarded in the kind of reading they provide for the DeaC
and Dumb. Hundreds of books that might be named which would
produce but slight effects on others, will prove (k>sitive]y injurious to
them. A mute reads no work which he fully understands, without
drinking in much of it its spfait, and living over in imagination the
scenes which it depicts.

I cannot too highly recommend the learning of the manual alphabet
by those who may have mute friends. While I entirely discard the
idea of its having, as some of late seem to suppose, any important
iofluence in communicating to the young in general a knowledge of
orthc^raphy, still it is a moat hapyy circumstance for a gradoate of
the Asylum, on returning home to find those who can in this way
converse with him. Friends and relatives who can thus communicate
^th him are Uar more highly esteemed than those who cannot. And
they have a redoubled power to influence him to good, or to eviL
He who oT^ercises this influence so as to promote the virtue and hap-
piness of the lonely one, will find his reward in the testimony of his
own conscience, and the smiles of approving Heaven. .

As our pupils leave their peaceful home in the Asylum for the
''^t exciting, and trying scenes of their future lives, we trust tbej ,
ouiy still be the objects of the kind regards of the benevolent and
humane. The attentions bestowed upon them will usually be grate-



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fally received, waA mil so much teod to their pra«|>erity «ai hip-
. pioesBy that those who strive to do them good may ^ afraiedy hj
their own observation, that their efforts are not in vain. Tliefnat-
est blessing we could wish to follow our pupils us they finally defwt
from the walls of their Alma Mater, is that they may find kind mi
judicious friends, who will ever encourage them in the paib of
rectitude and virtue, and who fail not to warn them of the ruinoa
consequences whidi will attend any improper course they may be
. tempted to pursue.

It affords me pleasure to bear testimony to the good condiict, icaL
. and efficiency of the Officers associated with me in carrying forwaul
the operations of the Asylum. Messrs. Wu<i«abi>, Axtbu., and Has-
SON have discharged their duties as Instructors, in a manner bolk
creditable to themselves, and profitable to the pupils. Messrs. Wur
LiAM H. DsMoTTSt and Jbrbmiah Tinolby entered on their dotin
as Teachers, at the commencement of the present session. Tbey aie
successfully mastering the difficulties and idioms of the sign langoigs;
and seem likely to become efficient co-laborers, in our imponut
work.

- Miss Li7CY Jambsok, our present Matron, has manifested a kindly
interest in the welfare of the pupils, and, as &r as she was able, p>
..^noted the interests of the Asylum.

The pupils have, as heretofore, been much indebted for kind attsa-
tions in sickness to their skillful Physician Prof. I^vinostoh DiTituir,
M. D. His successful treatment of disease has been gratifying to tke
Inmates of the Asylum, and to the parents of the scholars.

Allow, Gentlemen of the Board of Trustees, a full heart to exprev
the gratitude which I feel for the efficient aid and support which hai
been so long ac(5brded me by your honorable Body. Among the
most gloomy anticipations of the future, is that a time when withi
Board less wise and concordant in council than yourselves, I msj
be called to discharge the responsible duties which it has been yov
pleasure to impose. I may scarcely hope sic dim, sic semper ; stiS
H Will require a succession of years, for any Board to madly tear cf
, the broad foundations for the future increase and prosperity of tb
Asylum, which you have so securely laid.

And b conclusion,6entlemen of the Board of Trastees, pamitae



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» eoograittbtt ymf mmi ihrn^ yoo ib» Hm. Geaer*! AsseinUy^
n tfaft Utherlo pfospefoini ooufMi which hu bMm vooehtaibfl tl^
0oble. eatarprise in whieh we are engaged. Nine yeera ego, no
ohooifor the mate existed in Indisna. Tlie beneToJenttn other
Itetes, when es)nd if there was no hope of toccesdally establisbiag
la Asylum here, dared not encourage the entorprise. ** The Staler''
hey aaidt '* was too young, the population to sparse to saslainia
chool/* They looked forward to a period, a quarter of a ceoloey
\i least 4iBAanti ae.the proper onefor taking the initiatory steps, fint
he geueroue pAople of. Indhma had nat so willed it Though deHi-
ute of any endowmeut for the purpose; a favor which hed by. acts
>{ Congress been extetided to severel States,- though none froei
kbroad caine to plead for the Deaf aod Duinb» though w«ghed tofh^
iarth by a crushing foreign debt, in her day of advefsity with nwe
;e counsel her hut her own generous ionpulses, Indiana reipembeiifld
lor mute ehildreu. As a taint seinblence of a school appeared on the
nTabash, a specific tai(, the first of the kind in the worlds was levied
Ml the grand duplicate of the State to defray the expenses of an Asy-
um. From liake Michigan to the Ohio Riyer, from the .eastem
boundary to the prairies ol Illinois, not a matt mni;mured. Vf^\
ffiid the Patriarch of Afnerican Mute Asylums, as the big tsar treo^-
sled in his eye, bespe^kiug emotions to deep for uUfimncf^^ '^ CM
jBillble99 Mima.''

The I5th day of January, 1846, was a dark but a proud day for
the State. *< A Bill permanently locating the Deaf and Dumb Asy-
lum and making an appropriation for the purchase of a site for the
Buildings,** and another '' Providing for the erection of the Lunatic
Asylum,** had passed the Senate, and were in the hands of the Com-
mittee on Education in the House of Representatives* And on the
table, awaiting its third reading lay the great measu]^ of the session^
'^ An act to provide for the funded debt of Indiana.** Yet further, on
the same table, in a message from the Senate was, ^ A Bill to provide
Tor educating the indigent Blind of this State** The agent of our
(creditors, like an inexorable bailiff, was demanding jestice for his cli-
ents ; while in suppliant posture the Deaf and Dumb, the Lunatic and
the Blind knelt, and prayed for some alleviation of their sad condi-
tion. If the State should be just, how could she be generous? If
the were genetous, how could she he J4»t7 These four ly^ewafes it
seemed, could not pass ; some one, if not all of Ihenw^iseai being press*



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ad in sach ok>M coQn«otioii| appotred dM>OMi to fail But tte
people's BepraaentativM noUy met tha eriu. Ob the aam day ik
first three Bills were pasMd. On tlie next ib» one i& ngud tolk
Blind, as sopn as it ooald be reached^ was read three iiauBh ^t^
acted, without a dissmting TiMce. So faras three^atksstioftkBN
measures were coacemed, not a man throogboot the teogtk lai
breadth of the State, was found to censure the action. Bat the g»
erous purposes of the State were not yet accoiD|riiBhed. In om^
ance with the costom in other States, colificatee of poverty vere re-
quired of those who would share the State bounty, /a 1848 tkim
of the AstfJumSffor Mutes^ for the BUnd^and for iMnaties wm
thrown open to oil ; thai their blessings^ like the raintandieaif
Heaven^ might fredy ie$cendon these children of misfortuMt ikmgk,
out the State f without money ^ and without price. Here, again, hdian
among the goTemments of the civilized earth stood alone. On tb
scroll of fame, in letters of living light, too bright for time to tarnii
she had written Heaven's own motto: ** As ts wouu> rturonm

SHOULD DO VHTO TOI7 DO TB EVBlf SO UNTO THCM.** NoW, in bertW

of flourishing Institutions, she presents the school for mutes, 0DlJ!e^
en years from its organization, educating by one third, in proporte
to population, more than any State in the Union, or government a
the earth. When Marengo, Austerlitz, Jena, Borodino and Waterin
shall be forgotten by Mankind, acts such as these shall be rememba-
ed, and recalled, but to be honored. May we not humUy tnistftbit
He that ruleth in the circle of the Heavenst will deigp to iMartb
prayer which has ascended from the warm hearts of so many of our
pupils:

Qod blew tfia State, whoM cenerout arm tiistaiiis

With willinf oSSnios* firMi tier nmdtag pteiai^

Oar hapleM band, which else in oarkeet night.

Had ever roamed, ttnMett of seienee*t Kght ;

Had never learned thy preeiona Word to love.

Or hoped to reet within thy oonrti above.

With golden harreata let her fielda be crowned.

While peace and plenty spread their joya aroand.

Ood of all nations, grant lier sons may live, '

For her, and Thee alone. And wilt then ffivo.

When earth no more its annual eircnit rolls.

And angel's hand Uio Knell of ruin toUs,

A pemeefiU end wUk ftr^ 9]^emdon emmtd

Blow Ltr Bn amb or siinni ckohblk to thb omvmb.

Respectfully submitted:

JAMES S. BROWN.
Asylum for the Deaf and Duwh^ \
InBiAjiAMiis, Dee. 30th, 18S0. \



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N. B. It affords me much plaasuret in behalf of the 'Pupila, %o
ender to the generous Editors and Poblishtrs of the following Joom-
Js, our most grateful thanks for the copies which they have gratuit-
ously sent to the Asylum. The perusal of these periodicals has af-
brded our scholars much sati^ction ; and they respectfully ask
hese gentlemen who may live at a distance, never to visit Indianap*
ilis, without coming to the Institution for the Deaf and Dumb; as
hey will put on their brightest smiles, and try their best to interest
uch kind benefactors.

ones's Vineennes Senthiel, Richmond Palladium,
ndiana State Journal, [Tri- Weekly,] Lafayette Weekly Journal,

^incennes Gazette, Indiana American,
udiana State Sentinel, [Semi- Weekly,JCambridge Reveille,

)ecatur Clarion, Logansport Teleffraph,

ladison Weekly Courier, Wayne County W hig,

''ort Wayne Times, People's Friend>

iIoDtgomery Journal, St. Joseph Valley Register,

^afayette Courier, New Albany Ledger,

larrison Gazette, Indiana Register,

)emocralic Pharos, Fort Wajrne Sentinel,

Vashington Democrat, Indiana Sinial,

Ddiana Whig, Christian Record,

Vhite Water Valley, Danville Weekly Advertiser,

Vabash Atlas, Yanderbuig Democrat,

)emocratic Clarion, White River Standard,

odiana Statesman, Anderson Gazette,

''amily Visitor, Home MisceDany.

The following have been forwarded us from without the State, for
rhich their Editors will please accept our thanks:

Masonic Review, (Cincinnati,)
Western Christian Advocate, (Cincinnati,)
Central Christian Herald, do

. Christian Age» do

Boatman's Magazine, (Cleveland, O.)

Several of these Journals have favorably noticed the Asylum, for
rhich their Editors have our thanks; as thus a knowledge of its op-
rations has been more widely diffused.

JAMES S. BROWN.



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PHYSICIAN'S REPORT.



To the Trustees of the Deaf and Dumb Asylum :

Gentlbmek: — In compliance with the requiremenis of the Board»
and in conformity to the custom of other Institutions of similar
character, I submit the following report, for the term commencing
in Novembefi 1849, and extending to the 31st of December, 1850.

Except in vacaticm there have been in attendance one hundred
pupils, residents of nearly every county in the State. They are gen-
erally possessed of good constitutions, but the change in their accus-
tomed habits, and mode of living upon coming to the institution, is
in many cases deleterious to health, the most of them having beeo
accustomed to athletic exercise, and perhaps to hard labor.

The change to the sedentary life of the student has in some in-
st.inces gradually enervated the constitution of the pupils; resulting
in temporary illness. The want of room and the unsuitable construc-
tion of the house occupied have been fruitful sources of indisposition.
The crowded and illy vent ilia ted sleeping apartments, unhealthy at
all times, and more particularly so during the heat of summer, disease
was often traceable to this cause, and it always retarded convales!
cetice in those attacked.

It is proper to state that the Suf^rintendent took all occasions to
avoid these difficulties by encouraging exercise in the open air after
school hours — but these eflects could not be entiraly warded off;
and a majority of the pupils were indisposed at one time and anoth-
er during the year.

During the months of January and February from twenty-five to
thirty of the pupils were attacked v^ ith cattarrhal pneumonia, a dis-
ease which prevailed in the city at that time; and notwithstanding
the disadvantages to which they were by necessity compelled to sub-
mit, and which were in part obviated by the kind services in the
way of nursing by the officers of the Institution, and although the



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353

Eittacks vrere severe in almost every instance, all recovered except
William Buchanan or Switzerland county, who died April 15th from
eflusion in the chest.

April and May were comparatively healthy, no severe cases hap-
pening; and every indisposition readily yielding to judicious dieting»
and an occasional dose of medicine.

The pupils in the months of June and July were frequently at-
tacked with the prevailing diseases of the country, the Intermittent
and Remittent fevers; and often with a tendency to Dysentery and
Cholera-morbus; particularly the la ter, among those that remained
through the vacation in August and September. None of these
cases were of long duiution; and all readily yielding to remedial
agents. During the remaining months the pupils have enjoyed as
good health as our citizens generally ; and probably as good as the
residents of any place in the St te.

It remains to record a few casualties which cannot bo said to be-
long to any locality; but ^re incident to all places. Some time in
April, William G. Enochs was severely wounded with the blade of
an axe by his comrade, while in the act of splitting wood on the
farm — at which place the pupils performed considerable labor in sup*
plying fuel for the Asylum. The blade severed the muscles and
blood-vessels at the front part of the thigh, and a short distance above
the knee; and passed obliquely down into the capsule of the joint.
By the assistance of my fiiend Dr. Bobbs, the wound was dressed;
and several arteries were taken up and secured by ligatures. The
wound healed kindly; and after several weeks the boy was sent
home. On bis late return to the Institution, I discover no other
damage sustained in consequence of the wound, than a slight stiflTness
of the knee joint.

In the latter part of May, Francis A. Crompton of Atlica, while
passing from the city to the farm, fell from a foot-bridge and injured
the elbow joint. I was called to see him about an hour after the ac-



Online LibraryIndianaAnnual reports of the officers of state of the State of Indiana → online text (page 35 of 40)