Henry Barnard.

Tribute to Gallaudet. A discourse in commemoration of the life, character and services of the Rev. Thomas H. Gallaudet, Ll.D., delivered before the citizens of Hartford, Jan. 7th, 1852. With an appendix, containing history of deafmute instruction and institutions, and other documents online

. (page 1 of 26)
Online LibraryHenry BarnardTribute to Gallaudet. A discourse in commemoration of the life, character and services of the Rev. Thomas H. Gallaudet, Ll.D., delivered before the citizens of Hartford, Jan. 7th, 1852. With an appendix, containing history of deafmute instruction and institutions, and other documents → online text (page 1 of 26)
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Containing History of Deaf-Mute Instruction and Institutions, and other Documents.




Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1852, by

in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of Connecticut.


C i.SE, Tl FFANY & CO.,


Hartford, Jan. 9th, 1852.
Dear Sir:

The undersigned having listened with much gratification to your truly
interesting and eloquent eulogy, of the 7th inst., on the life and services of
our esteemed fellow-citizen, the late Rev. Thomas H. Galxaudet, of this
city, solicit a copy of the same for publication, a general desire having been
manifested to see it in print. Understanding that you omitted, in the deliv-
ery, a portion of the address prepared for that occasion, it is the desire of
the committee, should you consent to comply with their request, that you
Avill furnish them with the entire production, for the press, together with such
other matter in connection therewith, as you may wish to publish with it.
With sentiments of great respect,

Very truly yours, &c,



Superintendent of Common- Schools.


I. Alice Cogswell.

II. History of Deaf-Mute Instruction and Institutions, in Europe and the
United States.

III. Autobiography of Laurent Clerc.

IV. Journal of Rev. Thomas II. Gallaudet, during his visit to Europe, in

V. History of the American Asylum. Officers and Instructors of the
American Asylum from 1816 to 1851. Subscriptions and Contri-
butions to the American Asylum.
VI. A Sermon delivered at the opening of the Connecticut Asylum for
the Education of Deaf and Dumb Persons, April 20th, 1817, by
Rev. Thomas II. Gallaudet.
VII. A Discourse delivered at the Dedication of the American Asylum,
May 22d, 1821, by Rev. Thomas II. Gallaudet.
VIII. A Sermon on the Duty and Advantages of affording Instruction to
the Deaf and Dumb, by Rev. Thomas II. Gallaudet.
IX. Testimonial of the Deaf Mutes of New England to Messrs. Gallaudet
and Clerc.
X. Discourse delivered at the Dedication of the Chapel of the Connecticut
Retreat for the Insane, January 28th, 1846, by Rev. Thomas H.
( lallaudet, Chaplain.
XL Remarks on Seminaries for Teachers, by Rev. Thomas H. Gallaudet.
XII. List of Pupils who have been connected with the American Asylum,
from April loth, 1817, to May 1st, 1851.
XIII. Causes of Deafness and other Statistics.]




$ttr. Chinas fojluns gallauK If. J).


We shall make no apology for devoting the pages of our Journal for Jan-
uary and February to the life, character and services of that wise educator,
distinguished philanthropist and Christian gentleman, the Rev. TnoMAS
Hopkins Gallaudet.

Rev. Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet, LL. D., died on the 10th of Sep-
tember, 1 85 1 , and was buried on the 1 2th of the same month, after impressive
religious services in the South Congregational Church, which was crowded
with mourning friends, the officers and members of the public institutions
with which the deceased was connected in life, and with citizens generally.
The loss which society and the cause of religion had thus sustained was
duly commemorated and improved in several churches of the city on the
Sabbaths immediately following. But it was still a very general wish that
exercises of a more public character should be had, in which the citizens of
Hartford generally might participate.

In pursuance of a call signed by thirty of the principal citizens of Hartford,
a preliminary meeting was held in the Lecture Room of the Center Church,
on the evening of the 20th of October, 1851, in reference to the adoption of
measures for some public tribute of respect to his memory.

The meeting was called to order by Governor Seymour, and organized by
the appointment of Hon. Thomas Day, Chairman, and Luzerne Rae, Sec-

A series of resolutions was presented by the Rev. William W. Turner,
which, after brief remarks by the mover, the Hon. Seth Terry, the Rev. Dr-
Bushnell, and other gentlemen, were unanimously adopted.

2 Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet.

lllicreas, It having pleased Almighty God to remove by death the Rev.
Thomas H Gallaudet, LL. D., a resident of Hartford for half a century,
universally known and not less universally beloved and honored, both as a
private citizen and public benefactor;

Resolved, That, in the view of this meeting, the occasion is one which de-
mands a more public and particular recognition, than properly belongs to the
demise of an ordinary citizen.

Resolved, That the whole character of the eminent and excellent man whose
death we mourn, commanding, as it did, our reverence and admiration while
he lived among us, will be long remembered now that he is dead, as a happy
union ol" various and often disunited qualities; of Christian faith and philan-
thropic works; of liberality without laxity; of firmness without bigotry; of
sympathy with the vicious and the criminal in their sufferings, without undue
tenderness toward vice and crime ; and as furnishing in its whole development,
a beautiful proof of the possibility of meeting the most rigorous demands of
conscience and of God, and of securing at the same time, the love and respect
of all classes and conditions of men.

Resolved, That, by the death of Dr. Gallaudet, society has lost one of its
brightest ornaments ; the cause of education a most able and faithful advocate ;
religion, a shining example of daily devotion to its principles; the young a
kind and judicious counselor ; and the unfortunate of every class, a self-denying
and never wearying friend.

Resolved, That the noblest monuments of the deceased are already erected ;
and that his name wili never be forgotten, so long as the two benevolent institu -
tions, one of which received its existence from the labor of his early manhood,
while the other enjoyed the devoted services of his later years, remain to crown
the beautiful hills in the neighborhood of our city.

Resolved, That a committee ol' tive be appointed by this meeting, to devise
such measures as may seem expedient, in further tribute to the memory of Dr.
Gallaudet; and to make all the arrangements necessary to carry these meas-
ures into effect.

In accordance- with the last of these resolutions, a committee of arrange-
ments was appointed, consisting of the following gentlemen : — B. Hudson,
Esq., His Excellency, Thomas H. Seymour, James H. Wells, Esq., Phillip
Ripley, Esq., Dr. John S. Butler.

In pursuance of the action of this committee, the following Public Services
were held in the South Congregational Church on Wednesday evening,
January 7th, 1852.


Blessed are the dead, who die in the Lord from henceforth. Yea, saith
the Spirit, that they may rest from their labors, and their works do follow

Our days are as a shadow, and there is none abiding; we are but of yes-
terday, there is but a step between us and death.

Man's days tire as grass ; as a flower of the field, so he ilourisheth.

He appeareth for a little lime, and then vanisheth away.

Watch, for yc Luovv not what hour your Lord cloth come.

Be ye also ready, for in such tin hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.

It is the Lord; let him do what seemeth him gootl.

The Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away, and blessed be the name of
the Lord.



Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet. 3



We mourn his loss, — who meekly walked

In the Redeemer's way,
And toiled the unfolding mind to shield

From Error's darkening sway;

Who strove through Nature's prisoning shades

The hermit-heart to reach,
And with philosophy divine

To give the silent, speech ;

Who 'mid the cells of dire disease

In prayerful patience wrought,
And stricken and bewildered souls

To a Great Healer brought.

Around his grave let pilgrims throng.

And tears bedew his urn :
'Tis meet that for the friend of all,

The hearts of all should mourn.

Yet meet it is our God to praise

For his example here,
And for his glorious rest, — above

The trial and the tear.





He dies : the earth becomes more dark

When such as he ascend to heaven,
For where Death strikes a ' shining mark,'

Through bleeding hearts his shaft is driven.
Alike the sounds of mourning come

From humble hut and lofty hall,
Wherever misery finds a home ;

And all lament the friend of all.

He dies: and still around his grave,

The silent sons of sorrow bend,
With tears for him they could not save,

Their guide — their father — and their friend ;
And minds in ruin ask for him,

With wondering woe that he is gone;
And cheeks are pale and eyes are dim,

Among the outcast and forlorn,

4 Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet.

He lives : for virtue cannot die;

The man departs, his deeds remain ;
They wipe the tear, they check the sigh,

They hush the sob of mortal pain.
Love lasts forever : age on age

The holy flame renews its glow,
While man's brief years of pilgrimage,

End in the dust of death below.

He lives : his memory is the light

To which our eyes with reverence turn :
To love the true — to choose the right —

Are lessons from his life we learn.
Give us, O God! thy guiding hand,

And teach us by thy word, that we
Like him may labor in the land,

And follow him to heaven and Thee.




Paraphrase of COLLINS' "How sleep the brave!''


How sleep the good ! who sink to rest,
With their Redeemer's favor blest:
When dawns the day, by seers of old,
In sacred prophecy foretold,
They then shall burst their humble sod,
And rise to meet their Saviour — God.

To seats of bliss by angel-tongue,
With rapture is their welcome sung,
And at their tomb when evening gray
Hallows the hour of closing day,
Shall Faith and Hope awhile repair,
To dwell with weeping Friendship there.

The early and spontaneous movement of many graduates of the American
Asylum, and of deaf mutes in other parts of the country towards the erection
of a monument in the grounds of the Asylum, commemorative of their grati-
tude and affection towards this great benefactor of that class, may supersede
*he action of the committee in that direction.


In the autumn of 1807, in the family of Dr. Mason Fitch
Cogswell, the beloved physician of our city at the date refer-
red to, there was an interesting child, over whose innocent
beauty, and joyous temper, and opening faculties, two sum-
mers had shed their fragrance, their brightness and their
music. The heart of little Alice Cogswell, — for her name
has become historic, — seemed the gushing fountain of glad
and gladdening emotions, which fell from her lips in the un-
written melody of childhood's first imperfect words. Her
curious ear was quick to catch the lowest tones of a mother's
or a sister's voice, and assimilate into her spirit's growth the
many sounds with which exulting nature makes every nook
of her wide domain vocal. There was about her whole ap-
pearance and movements that indescribable purity and joy
which suggested to the poet the thought " that Heaven lies
about us in our infancy," or that more consoling declaration
of Him who took little children in his arms and blessed them,
" that of such is the kingdom of Heaven."

Interesting as this child was, she became in the providence
of God, in consequence of an attack of spotted fever, when
two years and three months old, an object of still wider
and deeper interest to her family, to this community, and to
the world.

The child recovered from its severe illness, but it was soon
painfully evident that the sense of hearing was obliterated,
and that to her ear this universe of sound, from the mighty
compass of the many-stringed harp of nature, to the varied
tones of the human voice, was as silent as a desert ; and as is
not usual in such cases, the loss of articulation soon followed
the loss of hearing.

6 TJiomas Hopkins Gallaudet.

There is no need of words to realize to you, even if you
have not been brought into the experience, or the presence of
such calamity, — the mother's anguish or the father's anxiety,
when the gladsomeness of this child's heart no longer found
expression in prattling converse, and its blank look proclaimed
that the voice of maternal affection fell unheeded on its ear.
The yearnings of its young spirit for love, or for its little
wants, could only find expression in inarticulate breathings,
or uncouth explosions of sound.

As Alice grew in years, it was painfully evident, that as
compared with children of the same age, having perfect
senses, she did not grow in knowledge. The shades of a
prison-house seemed to close round her mind, although
placed in the midst of cultivated society, teachers, schools,
books, and

The boundless store
Of charms which nature to her votary yields;
The warbling woodland ; the resounding shore;
The pomp of groves and garniture of fields ;
All that the genial ray of morning gilds,
And all that echoes to the song of even ;
All that the mountains' sheltering bosom shields,
And all the dread magnificence of Heaven.

Her spirit, gifted with the warmest affections, and the
power of an endless life, and of indefinite progression, seemed
destined to sit in the loneliness of perpetual solitude, — cut
off from all intercourse, through teachers and books, with the
great and good on earth, from the majestic contemplation of
its own immortal existence, the sublime conception of an
Infinite and Supreme Intelligence, and from all communion
with the spirits of the just made perfect.

By agencies and in ways, to which I shall briefly advert,
modes of reaching, and educating that mind were discovered
and applied, — that imprisoned spirit was wooed forth into
the light of a gladsome existence, — the warmth of that loving
heart was cherished so as to add not only to the cheerfulness
of her parental home, and when she passed from girlhood into
young womanhood, she was not only clothed with the attrac-
tions of personal beauty and accomplished manners, but

Thomas Hopkins GaUaudet. 7

displayed the higher attractions of a cultivated mind and a
purified spirit — star-illumed, like the depths of the midnight
Heavens above us, with bright thoughts and holy aspirations.

Among the teachers who were instrumental in commencing
and working this change, the name of Lydia Huntley must
not be forgotten, to whom also many of the most accom-
plished women of our city owe the early culture of their
minds and moral tastes, and who under this and another
name, by weaving her own happy inspirations into the bridal
wreath and the mourning chaplet of her friends, has associa-
ted herself inseparably with the household memories of our
city and our land.

How touching and beautiful are the lines in which this
gifted lady has imagined her favorite pupil, from a higher
and purer region, addressing the cherished objects of kindred
affection on earth.

Joy ! I am mute no more,
My sad and silent years
With all their loveliness are o'er,
Sweet sisters dry your tears ;
Listen at hush of eve, — listen at dawn of day,
List at the hour of prayer, — can ye not hear my lay ?
Untaught, unchecked, it came,
As light from chaos beamed,
Praising his everlasting name,

Whose blood from Calvary streamed,
And still it swells that highest strain, the song of the redeemed.

Sisters ! there's music here ;

From countless harps it flows,
Throughout this bright celestial sphere,

Nor pause nor discord knows.
The seal is melted from mine ear,

By love divine,
And what through life I pined to hear,

Is mine, is mine, —
The warbling of an ever tuneful choir,
And the full, deep response of David's sacred lyre.
Did kind earth hide from me,
Her broken harmony,
That thus the melodies of Heaven might roll
And whelm in deeper tides of bliss my wrapt, my wondering soul !

But the individual whose blessed privilege it was to plant
the standard of intelligence in the almost inaccessible fast-

8 TJwmas Hopkins Gallaudet.

nesses of Alice Cogswell's mind, — to establish for her lines
and avenues of communication between the inner and
the outer world, — to give her the means and methods of
self-culture, — and if not literally to unloose the tongue, or
unseal the ear, to unfold to her spirit the harmonies, and
clothe it with the singing robes of Heaven, — was Thomas
Hopkins Gallaudet.

But his labors in the cause of deaf-mute instruction were
not confined to this individual case. Through the agency
and cooperation of many others, it was his higher distinction
to have founded an institution, and by its success, to have
led the way to the establishment of already thirteen other in-
stitutions, by which thousands of this unfortunate class have
already been rescued from the doom of ignorance and isola-
tion from their kind ; and tens of thousands more, instead of
remaining ignorant, lonely, and helpless, will yet be introduced
to the boundless stores of human and divine knowledge, to
the delights of social intercourse, to a participation in the
privileges of American citizenship, to such practical skill in
useful mechanical and commercial business, and even the
higher walks of literature, science and the fine arts, as will ena-
ble them to gain an honorable livelihood, by their own personal
exertions, and in fine, to all the duties and privileges of edu-
cated Christian men and women, capable not only of indi-
vidual usefulness and well-being, but of adding, each, some-
thing to the stock of human happiness, and of subtracting
something from the sum of human misery.

But he was not only the successful teacher in a new and
most difficult department of human culture, he was a wise
educator in the largest acceptation of that word, the early
and constant friend of the teacher in every grade of school,
the guide and counselor of the young, the untiring laborer in
every work of philanthropy — the Christian gentleman, and
the preeminently good man. And this truly great and good
man was our own townsman, and neighbor and friend.
Here was the field of his useful and benevolent labors, — here
stands, and will stand the institution which he founded, and
with which his name will be associated forever. Here in our

Tlwmas Hopkins Gallaudet. 9

daily walks, are the men and women whom his labors have
blessed, — here are the children and youth, the sons and
daughters of silence, and but for him, of sorrow, who have
come here to this " house of mercy," which he founded, to
this pool of Bethesda, whose waters will possess the virtue
of healing so long as its guardians labor in his spirit, — here
the beauty of his daily life fell like a blessing on the dusty
turmoil of our busy and selfish pursuits.

From this field of his benevolent labor, — from these public
charities, in whose service he spent so large a part of his
life, — from his family, where he had gathered up his heart's
best affections of an earthly sort, — from his daily round of
neighborly and benevolent offices, it has pleased God to re-
move him by death. And although the funeral obsequies
have long since been performed, and the winds of winter,
which ever reminded him of the claims of the poor, are now
sighing their requiem over his last resting-place, to which
we followed him in the first month of autumn — we, his
fellow-citizens, neighbors and friends, have come together,
to devote a brief space to the contemplation of his life,
character and services. Our commemoration of such a
man cannot come too late, or be renewed too often, if we
go back to our various pursuits, with our faith in good-
ness made strong, and our aims and efforts for the welfare of
our fellow-men purified and strengthened. But whatever we
may do, or omit to do, for his broadly beneficent life and
sublime Christian virtues, the world will add one other name
to its small roll of truly good men who have founded institu-
tions of beneficence, and lifted from a bowed race the burden
of a terrible calamity ; —

One other name with power endowed,

To cheer and guide men onward as they pass, —

One other image on the heart bestowed,
To dwell there beautiful in holiness.

Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet was born in the city of
Philadelphia, on the 10th of December, 1787. His father,
Peter W. Gallaudet, was descended from that branch of a
Huguenot family, which fled from France on the revocation

10 Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet.

of the Edict of Nantz, and settled afterward near New Rochelle
in New York, on the borders of Connecticut. His mother, Jane
Hopkins, was the daughter of Captain Thomas Hopkins,— a
descendant of one of the first settlers of Hartford, whose
name is recorded on the historical monument in. the old
burial ground in the rear of the Center Church. The family
removed to Hartford in 1800, where the son continued ever
after to reside.

Mr. Gallaudet completed his preparation at the Hartford
Grammar School for the sophomore class of Yale College,
which he entered in the autumn of 1802, in the fifteenth year
of his age, — an age, as he often remarked, too young, to ena-
ble a student to reap the full advantage of a collegiate course
of study and discipline. Although quite young, — the young-
est member of his class, and by temperament and habit
inclined to be cheerful and even mirthful, he was ever studi-
ous, with a reputation for sound scholarship, second to no
other in his class, distinguished for the talent and attain-
ments of its members, — strictly observant of the laws of the
institution, and graduated before he was eighteen years old.
During his connection with college, he was remarkable for
the accuracy of his recitations in every department of study,
and was particularly eminent in mathematics, and for profi-
ciency in English composition. To his early attention to
mathematics we may attribute much of that discipline which
enabled him to summon his mental vigor and resources at
will, and to his early and constant practice of English com-
position, that facility and felicity of expression which char-
acterized his conversation and more elaborate discourses.

Soon after leaving college he entered upon the study of
law, in the office of Hon. Chauncey Goodrich — reciting his
Blackstone, during Mr. Goodrich's absence in attendance at
court, to the Hon. Thomas S. Williams, late chief justice of
the State. Here, as in every thing he undertook, he was
punctual, and methodical, his recitations were remarkable
for their accuracy, and he gave every assurance of his be-
coming in time a thorough and successful lawyer. The state
of his health, which was never robust, compelled him at the

Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet. 11

close of the first year, to suspend his legal studies, which he
never resumed. The interval, before he entered on his duties
as tutor in Yale College, in 180S, was devoted to an exten-
sive course of reading in English literature, and the practice
of English composition. His experience as tutor enabled him
to review and extend his collegiate studies, and introduced
him to the subject of education as a science, and to its prac-
tical duties as an art. No one could appreciate more highly
than he did the value of even a brief experience in teaching,
as a school of mental and moral discipline, and as the most
direct way to test the accuracy of attainments already made.

About this time, his health requiring a mare active life, he
undertook a business commission for a large house in New
York, the prosecution of which took him over the Alleghanies,
into the States of Ohio and Kentucky, — and on his return,
with the intention of pursuing a mercantile life, he entered
as clerk a counting-room in the city of New York. But
neither law or commerce seemed to open the field, in which
he could labor with his whole heart and mind, although he

Online LibraryHenry BarnardTribute to Gallaudet. A discourse in commemoration of the life, character and services of the Rev. Thomas H. Gallaudet, Ll.D., delivered before the citizens of Hartford, Jan. 7th, 1852. With an appendix, containing history of deafmute instruction and institutions, and other documents → online text (page 1 of 26)