Gallaudet and Cogswell
The 1889 statue Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet and Alice Cogswell by Daniel Chester French (1850-1931) is located on the campus of Gallaudet University. Daniel French was an American sculptor whose best-known work is the marble sculpture of Abraham Lincoln seated on a throne at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.
This 1889 statue portrays Gallaudet fingerspelling the alphabetical letter "a" to his pupil Alice Cogswell who imitates him. It symbolizes the new beginning of education for deaf students in America.
Gallaudet and Cogswell, a sculpture by Daniel Chester French.
Gallaudet encountered a nine years old deaf girl Alice in Connecticut. He taught her some words by writing in the dirt with a stick and Alice learned the words. He talked with Alice's father, Dr. Mason Cogswell, who asked him to go to Europe to learn about teaching methods and education for the deaf. Gallaudet returned to Connecticut with Laurent Clerc from France and they founded the first school for the deaf (now the American School for the Deaf) in Hartford, Connecticut in 1817. Alice was one of the first students.