Proposed Legislation, the Alice Cogswell Act of 2013 (pdf)
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Please Sign the Proposed Alice Cogswell Act Petition:
Alice Cogswell (August 31, 1805 – December 30, 1830) was the inspiration to Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet for the creation of the now American School for the Deaf in Hartford, Connecticut. At the age of two, she became ill with "spotted fever" (cerebra-spinal meningitis). This illness took her hearing and later she lost her speech as well. She was met, at age 9, by Gallaudet, who seized the opportunity to teach the deaf girl. He and Alice's father, Dr. Mason Cogswell, decided that a formal school would be best for her, but no such school existed in the United States. Gallaudet went to Europe for 15 months and returned with Laurent Clerc.
Alice Cogswell and six other deaf students entered the school that would become the American School for the Deaf in April 1817. She died at the age of twenty-five on December 30, 1830, just about thirteen days after the death of her father. On the campus of the present American School for the Deaf at Hartford stands a beautiful statue of Gallaudet and Cogswell.