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  • Helen Keller (1880-1968) with her teacher Anne Sullivan Macy (1866-1936) possibly at the International Flower Show.
  • Seattle, USA. 19th Jan, 2017. Norma Baum at the Womxn’s March Art Build at Urban ArtWorks. Ten large strong women puppets are being built for the Womxn’s March on Seattle. To be represented are current and historical feminist figures including Dolores Huerta, Rosa Parks and Helen Keller. The march will be held on January 21, 2017 in solidarity with the national Women’s March on Washington D.C. Credit: Paul Gordon/Alamy Live News
  • Jan 15, 1962; USA; RELEASE DATE: 1962. DIRECTOR: Arthur Penn. STUDIO: MGM. PLOT: Young Helen Keller, blind, deaf, and mute since infancy, is in danger of being sent to an institution. Her inability to communicate has left her frustrated and violent. In desperation, her parents seek help from the Perkins Institute, which sends them a ‘half-blind Yankee schoolgirl’ named Annie Sullivan to tutor their daughter. Through persistence and love, and sheer stubbornness, Annie breaks through Helen’s walls of silence and darkness and teaches her to communicate.
  • FILE PIC: PATTY DUKE, (December 14, 1946 – March 29, 2016) was an American actress of stage, film and television. Duke died at 69 of sepsis from a ruptured intestine. Duke won an Academy Award in 1963 for her portrayal of Helen Keller in ‘The Miracle Worker, ‘ a role she also played to acclaim on Broadway. She was also known for roles in ‘Valley of the Dolls, ‘ ‘My Sweet Charlie’ and ‘Me, Natalie, ‘ as well as for the ‘The Patty Duke Show, ‘ which aired from 1963 to 1966. PICTURED: Aug. 17, 2004 – Hollywood, California, U.S. Credit: ZUMA Press, Inc./Alamy Live News
  • HELEN KELLER American deafblind on the lap of Anne Sullivan about 1905
  • Memorial plaque at the well where Anne Sullivan Macy taught deaf and blind Helen Keller to communicate in Tuscumbia, Alabama
  • Helen Keller & Mrs. Macy (LOC)
  • Helen Keller, full-length portrait sitting in a lounge chair holding a vase in left hand and touching it with her right hand in 1909. Helen Keller (June 27, 1880 – June 1, 1968) was an American author, political activist, and lecturer. She was the first deaf-blind person to earn a bachelor of arts degree.
  • Helen Keller, 1880-1968. Though deaf and blind, Helen Keller graduated from Harvard University’s Radcliffe College with Bachelor of Arts degree. Her story became widely known through the play and film The Miracle Worker.
  • Images of the 9 residential apartments, known as ‘Reversible Destiny Lofts- In Memory of Helen Keller’, in Mitaka, Tokyo, Japan
  • HELEN ADAMS KELLER /n(1880-1968). American writer and lecturer. Photograph, c1920.
  • Miss Sullivan Reading to Helen Keller by the Hand, circa 1905
  • Helen Keller and Anne Sullivan
  • Helen Keller (1880-1968). Phototgraph of the deaf-blind author and political activist by Gerhard Sisters, c.1914
  • Alabama Tuscumbia Helen Keller Hospital
  • Helen Keller, October 28, 1904. Photograph showing Keller seated with hand on braille book in her lap as she smells a rose in a vase. Helen Adams Keller (June 27, 1880 – June 1, 1968) was an American author, political activist, and lecturer. She was 19 mo
  • Helen Keller 1880-1968, c1930. Helen Adams Keller; American author, political activist, and lecturer. She was the first deaf, blind person to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree. The story of how Keller’s teacher, Anne Sullivan, broke through the isolation imposed by a near complete lack of language, allowing the girl to blossom as she learned to communicate, has become widely known through the dramatic depictions of the play and film The Miracle Worker. Her birthday on June 27 is commemorated as Helen Keller Day in the U.S.
  • Helen Keller (1880-1968) American deaf and blind author and with her Scottish terrier named Darkie. See description for more information.
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  • Alexander Graham Bell, at age 54, with his student Helen Keller, at age 21.
  • Helen Keller Portrait in profile, 1904. Helen Adams Keller was an American author, political activist, and lecturer. She was the first deaf-blind person to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree.
  • Grave of deaf-blind writer Helen Keller, braille, crypt, Washington National Cathedral or Cathedral Church of Saint Peter and
  • March 29, 2016 – File – PATTY DUKE, (December 14, 1946 – March 29, 2016) was an American actress of stage, film and television. Duke died at 69 of sepsis from a ruptured intestine. Duke won an Academy Award in 1963 for her portrayal of Helen Keller in ‘The Miracle Worker, ‘ a role she also played to acclaim on Broadway. She was also known for roles in ‘Valley of the Dolls, ‘ ‘My Sweet Charlie’ and ‘Me, Natalie, ‘ as well as for the ‘The Patty Duke Show, ‘ which aired from 1963 to 1966. Pictured: 1967 – Patty Duke And Husband Harry Falk Jr. At The Premiere Of ”Half A Sixpence”. (Credit Image:
  • HELEN KELLER (at left) American campaigner for the deaf-blind and disabled (1880-1968)
  • Helen Keller, circa 1919 File Reference # 1003_571THA
  • Helen Keller Newspaper Notices (1913)
  • Helen Keller, bust portrait looking right May 8, 1905. Helen Keller (June 27, 1880 – June 1, 1968) was an American author, political activist, and lecturer. She was the first deaf-blind person to earn a bachelor of arts degree.
  • FROM THE NEW YORK HERALD. Helen Keller. The Susquehanna River to be Harnessed. Natural Gas at 1000 lb. to the Square Inch. The Steam Yacht Giralda. African Volcanoes. its southern shores. He believes the lake is almost as Japanese Troops. Typhoid from Oysters. African Saltpeter. Swallowing Alive., scientific american, 1895-01-05
  • Helen Keller 1880-1968, with eleanor roosevelt 1936. Helen Adams Keller; American author, political activist, and lecturer. She was the first deaf, blind person to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree. The story of how Keller’s teacher, Anne Sullivan, broke through the isolation imposed by a near complete lack of language, allowing the girl to blossom as she learned to communicate, has become widely known through the dramatic depictions of the play and film The Miracle Worker. Her birthday on June 27 is commemorated as Helen Keller Day in the U.S.
  • HELEN ADAMS KELLER /n(1880-1968). American writer and lecturer. Oil over a photograph.
  • Miss Helen Keller when she was a young teen, circa 1893
  • statue of Helen Keller in the Alabama state capitol building Montgomery, AL, USA
  • USA, Alabama, Muscle Shoals Area, Tuscumbia, Ivy Green, Helen Keller Birthplace and Home, museum exterior
  • Alabama Tuscumbia Ivy Green Helen Keller birthplace The Miracle Worker Play actress actors stage
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    8 Hellen Keller Facts For Kids

    navajocodetalkersadmin on December 1, 2014 – 12:00 pm in Fun Facts for Kids

    Helen Keller may be one of the most inspirational people that have ever lived on our planet so far. She was born deaf and blind, which meant that she couldn’t hear anyone or see anyone at all. This didn’t stop her from being able to learn how to communicate or appreciate things like music. Instead of hearing the music through her ears, Helen Keller could feel the vibrations of the sounds and enjoy them.

    At one point in her life, she even learned how to talk! Her accomplishments would be amazing for anyone, let alone someone who had to overcome a disability in order to achieve them. This fun facts will help us all get to know this incredible woman a little bit better.

    1. A Hot Dog, Anyone?

    One of Helen Keller’s most favorite foods was the hot dog. She would eat them as often as she could! Considering her sense of taste must have been incredible because it would be enhanced through the reduction of two other “normal” human senses, one might say that her love for this food item was a reflection of her life’s philosophy: life can either become a daring adventure or it can become nothing at all.

    The next time you eat a hot dog, try to enjoy it like Helen Keller would. Close your eyes, block out the sounds of the world around you, and taste each flavor that hits your tongue. Maybe you’ll like hot dogs even more too!

    2. Dogs Were More Than Food

    Helen Keller loved animals, but she loved dogs most of all. Throughout her entire life, she was known for owning a wide variety of different breeds. She was even given the gift of an Akita, which is a Japanese dog, and it became the first of its kind to come to the United States when Helen returned home later in the year. She often owned more than one dog at a time and those who saw her with her dogs say that they loved her as much as she loved them.

    3. She Saw the World

    Helen Keller believed that people are never really happy unless they get the chance to brighten the life of someone else. To fulfill that personal principle, she traveled the world to meet many different people and share her experiences with others. Many of her visits, especially during World War II, were to recovering soldiers in the hospital. When these injured soldiers could see how much Helen Keller could accomplish with her deafness and blindness, it gave them a great inspiration to find their own path of success.

    “The chief handicap of the blind is not blindness,” she would say, “but the attitude of seeing people towards them.”

    4. Imagine If She Had a Computer

    Helen Keller spent a long time learning how to read. She could understand Braille, but also could understand other forms of communication as well so that it was possible to carry on a conversation. These efforts also led her to being able to be a great typist. Helen Keller was even better than her two constant companions at typing. Now imagine what she could have accomplished if she would have had access to a computer!

    Her intelligence also led her towards a very important accomplishment: she became the first blind and deaf person to be able to earn a college degree. Helen Keller graduated with honors in 1904 and then used what she learned to inspire others. “The best and most beautiful things cannot be seen,” she would say. “They are only just felt in the heart.”

    5. There Were Lots of Famous Friends

    Many of the famous names from the late 1800′s and early 1900′s are associated with Helen Keller because they all wanted to be her friend. Mark Twain, Alexander Graham Bell, and even Franklin D. Roosevelt all called Helen Keller their friend. Part of the reason for this was that Helen Keller was just as famous in her own way. After all, she won an Oscar award for the documentary that was made about her life and she even starred in a film about herself once.

    Yet even though many people knew her name, Helen Keller remained humble, optimistic, but also forthright. “What good is faith if it does not teach us that we are able to build a more complete and beautiful world?” She would challenge people to be more and do more and that’s why many people wanted her to be their friend.

    6. Her Father Seceded

    You could say that a certain sense of rebellion was placed within Helen Keller from the very start. Her family was from the South and her father was an officer in the Confederacy during the Civil War. Instead of being told she couldn’t do anything, Helen Keller would prove them wrong by doing it anyway – and doing it better than most people could. She was the first person who was both deaf and blind to write a book and she wrote 14 of them during her life. She also toured in a vaudeville show and would field questions from the audience.

    7. She Changed the World

    Later on in her life, the reason why Helen Keller traveled a lot was to advocate for others who had similar disabilities. Many countries in the world at that time had no system of education or support for individuals with blindness or deafness as their disability. Helen would visit with these governments and work with them to establish schools and other needed supports and many of the places she visited now have educational and support programs for people with disabilities because of her extensive work.

    8. She Met Every President

    Over the course of her life, Helen Keller was able to meet every US President that served in office, starting with Grover Cleveland. This is because each leader wanted to get her perspective about what life was like and what the United States needed at the time to support every citizen in their pursuit of happiness – not just those who were born with a “normal” set of circumstances. The last President that she met before she died was John F. Kennedy.

    These facts show that Helen Keller was an incredible woman. She fought for equal rights and advocated for people with disabilities. Because of this, she will always be remembered.

    Favorite Meals of Your Favorite Historical Figures

    If you’re a real history aficionado, you probably have thought about what it’d be like to hang out with your favorite historical figures. You might have wanted to guzzle beer with Churchill, talk philosophy with Plato, or even smoke pot with Jerry Garcia. Of course, these things are pretty obvious.

    What isn’t obvious, though, is what they’d eat if they spent a day with you. Though it’s obscure knowledge, there are records out there of what many famous people in history enjoyed eating. Some of their favorite meals sound awesome, but others might just surprise you.

    Winston Churchill: Turtle Soup

    Winston Churchill was a massive fan of soups – but only if they weren’t the creamy type. Soup of all sorts was his shtick, and it was really part of his daily diet. Every night, he’d sip on a cold consomme before bedtime, and during the day, his favorite soup was always turtle soup.

    Oddly, turtle soup stopped being a British fad shortly after the war and actually getting a can of the stuff is pretty hard to do. As of right now, one museum in the UK still stocks it – so if you want to try it, it may take a long hike to do so.

    If you aren’t a fan of turtle soup, there are other dishes that he was known for loving. These include Indian curries, cheeses, and his cook’s best recipe, Sole Champeux.

    Herbert Hoover: Sweet Potatoes

    The portly president was known for making sweeping changes to the nation, but when it came to food, he was pretty old school. His favorite dish was simply well-prepared sweet potatoes using his family’s recipe.

    You can actually try the recipe out for yourself, since the US government actually catalogued some favorite presidential recipes over the years. We hear that Hoover’s sweet potatoes really work great with turkey.

    Napoleon Bonaparte: Marengo Chicken

    One of history’s most famous generals was a man that most people would expect to have excellent taste in food. His favorite dish, Chicken Marengo, was actually created for him during the battle of Marengo. (Hence, the name.)

    What ended up happening was that Bonaparte hadn’t eaten anything all day, and supplies worthy of such a conqueror were short in demand. His cook, worried for the ruler’s wellbeing, sent out some soldiers to collect some food from the local farmhouses.

    All they came back with were some shrimp, some chicken, tomatoes, garlic, and some eggs. The cook ended up using all the ingredients to create a dish that he hoped would help bring up Napoleon’s spirits. It succeeded and became a favorite for centuries later.

    Abraham Lincoln: Apples, Coffee, And Bacon

    Ol’ Honest Abe was one of the most modest presidents to have ever sat in the White House. Rarely ever seen drinking and known for his massive levels of self-control, Abraham Lincoln’s morning breakfast was as steady as it could have been – and it was also his favorite meal.

    His idea of a great dish would be bacon, apples, and maybe an egg, with coffee on the side. His taste is proof that you don’t need to be wealthy to enjoy a wholesome meal.

    Charles Darwin: Armadillo

    Charles Darwin’s initial claim to fame wasn’t his theory of evolution. Back when he was still studying at his college, he was a member of The Glutton Club – a school club that focused on fine dining, specializing in serving up massive quantities of exotic cuts of meat.

    His love of trying exotic meats brought him to try out alligator, hawks, and owls, among many others. But, according to him, the best meal he ever had was a dish that was made from an armadillo. Darwin said that the meat “tasted like duck,” but was somehow way better.

    History buffs also can tell you that Darwin ate every animal that he ever discovered – including the finches that made him famous. Somehow, this adventurer seems like he might be a little bit too intense to dine with.

    Frederick II: Candied Violets

    Frederick II was one of the most well-known rulers of the Holy Roman Empire and was one of the most powerful men in the Middle Ages. In his time, he was known for being a somewhat difficult ruler to deal with – at least, if you were a member of the church.

    However, there was one way to get close to his heart. Historical annals show that Frederick II had an incorrigible sweet tooth, and absolutely loved eating candied violets whenever the opportunity arose.

    These treats are actually rather easy to make. All you need to do is dip edible flowers in water that’s saturated with sugar, and wait for them to dry.

    Oscar Wilde: Roast Duck

    Oscar Wilde was a foodie in his day, and often would attend dinners with his lover, Bosie. Though he’s been known to sip fine wine, enjoy caviar, and also sink his teeth into a well-done cut of beef, historical records show that the flamboyantly awesome literary bad boy was a massive fan of duck.

    Roast duck, which was popular at the time, really seemed to put a smile on his face, especially when served with a couple of modest side dishes. That being said, he was also happy to eat simpler meals if duck wasn’t affordable.

    Alfred Hitchcock: Ham Pies

    Alfred Hitchcock’s corpulent figure definitely belies his love of food, and he had many dishes that often resulted in him binge eating for hours on end. However, if you wanted to guarantee that Hitchcock would be pleased with a meal, the easiest way to do that would be to bake a pie.

    His love of pies was a major contributor to his weight gain – particularly if it was a pie stuffed with ham, onion, eggs, and milk. You can actually find the recipe for Hitchcock’s favorite ham pie online, but if you’re on a diet, you may want to remind yourself that moderation is key.

    Mark Twain: Oysters

    Mark Twain, when he traveled abroad, often got homesick and wanted some ol’ fashioned American food to enjoy. In order to help remember some of them later on, Twain actually wrote down a list of around 60 foods that he would eat after he wrapped up his travels abroad.

    Some, such as Virginia bacon, American coffee, and American butter with real milk, were pretty obvious choices. What most people wouldn’t have expected is how much he loved oysters.

    He enjoyed oysters so much that he devoted five different entries on his list to them. He liked oyster soup, fried oysters, stewed oysters, Blue Points on the half-shell, and oysters roasted in the half-shell.

    Yes, he liked oysters a lot.

    Mozart: Liver Dumplings And Sauerkraut

    Mozart is considered to be one of the finest, most sophisticated composers in history, but you’d never guess it if you were to read his personal letters. Amidst a slew of fart jokes and writings about how awesome the game of billiards is, Mozart also regularly discussed his favorite meals of the day.

    Though he did love to talk about all the nice dishes he’d try at balls, his favorite standby has been recorded as liver dumplings with a side of sauerkraut. Yep, you really can’t get more Austrian than this composer’s tastes.

    Virginia Woolfe: Boeuf en Daube a la Niçoise

    Woolfe was one of many authors who believed that food was absolutely essential to sparking creativity, and readers of her work wouldn’t be surprised. She possessed an amazing talent for describing decadent meals, often to the point that people may have questioned if she actually attended such feasts.

    French cuisine held a particularly special place in her heart, and this too, isn’t surprising. During her times, it was a very popular and trendy form of food. Fans and friends noted that she often could be spotted eated Boeuf en Daube a la Niçoise – a dish involving beef, green onions, and other vegetables with a side of red wine.

    Albert Einstein: Pasta

    Very unlike most other men in the 40s and 50s, Einstein wasn’t a fan of meat. In fact, prior to becoming a full vegetarian, he was very vocal about eating meat as a moral issue. The world famous scientist was quoted as telling a friend that “man was not born to be a carnivore” in a letter.

    As far as his favorite food goes, Einstein was actually pretty easy to please. Friends and family of the scientist said that his favorite foods were spaghetti and fettucine. So, maybe he would have enjoyed a trip to the Olive Garden?

    Ludwig Van Beethoven: Soup OR Mac N’ Cheese

    Believe it or not, world famous composer Ludwig Van Beethoven had financial troubles most of his life – and he often found solace in drinking a piping hot bowl of soup. But, being Beethoven, bad soup was not something he could tolerate.

    His legendary love of soup was pretty widespread, and he was even known for judging people based on their soup-making abilities. At one point, he even said, “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”

    Surprisingly, his other favorite food is equally simple and budget-friendly: mac and cheese. The recipe that he used to love can be found online, and still tastes just as good as it did hundreds of years ago.

    Charlie Chaplin: Lamb Stew OR Curry

    Actor Charlie Chaplin has become one of the greatest legends that Hollywood ever made, and also was one of the few actors to deliver a stirring speech against the rise of fascism thanks to The Great Dictator. With all the acting and crazy stunts the comedian did, he had to have super-satisfying meals to keep him fueled for the next scene.

    Historic records show that Chaplin was a huge fan of a thick, meaty lamb stew. A close second would have to be curry – which was actually taking off in popularity in England at the time.

    Oh, and the actor who played the Little Tramp also had a third favorite: stewed beef tripe. But, that’s a little bit much to put on one list item, don’t you think?

    Helen Keller: Hot Dogs

    You would think that someone like Helen Keller would have a favorite food that would involve exotic spices or a really satisfying texture to it, right? Well, actually, it was quite the opposite. What Helen Keller enjoyed the most was none other than a simple hot dog on a bun.

    It’s weird to think that someone who had such a complex personality like her would enjoy something as simple as a hot dog for her favorite meal. But, sometimes it really is the simple pleasures in life that matter the most – and Keller would definitely know!

    Helen Keller, 1880-1968: She Became the Most Famous Disabled Person in the World


    I’m Ray Freeman.


    And I’m Shirley Griffith with PEOPLE IN AMERICA – a program in Special English by the Voice of America. Every week we tell about someone who was important in the history of the United States.

    This week we finish the story of a writer and educator, Helen Keller. She helped millions of people who, like her, were blind and deaf.


    We reported last week that Helen Keller suffered from a strange sickness when she was only nineteen months old. It made her completely blind and deaf. For the next five years she had no way of successfully communicating with other people.

    Then, a teacher — Anne Sullivan — arrived from Boston to help her. Miss Sullivan herself had once been blind. She tried to teach Helen to live like other people. She taught her how to use her hands as a way of speaking.

    Miss Sullivan took Helen out into the woods to explore nature. They also went to the circus, the theater, and even to factories. Miss Sullivan explained everything in the language she and Helen used — a language of touch — of fingers and hands. Helen also learned how to ride a horse, to swim, to row a boat and, even to climb trees.

    Helen Keller once wrote about these early days.


    “One beautiful spring morning I was alone in my room, reading. Suddenly, a wonderful smell in the air made me get up and put out my hands. The spirit of spring seemed to be passing in my room. ‘What is it?’ I asked. The next minute I knew it was coming from the mimosa tree outside.

    I walked outside to the edge of the garden, toward the tree. There it was, shaking in the warm sunshine. Its long branches, so heavy with flowers, almost touched the ground. I walked through the flowers to the tree itself and then just stood silent. Then I put my foot on the tree and pulled myself up into it. I climbed higher and higher until I reached a little seat. Long ago someone had put it there. I sat for a long time. . . Nothing in all the world was like this.” “


    Later, Helen learned that nature could be cruel as well as beautiful. Strangely enough she discovered this in a different kind of tree.


    “One day my teacher and I were returning from a long walk. It was a fine morning. But it started to get warm and heavy. We stopped to rest two or three times. Our last stop was under a cherry tree a short way from the house.

    The shade was nice and the tree was easy to climb. Miss Sullivan climbed with me. It was so cool up in the tree we decided to have lunch there. I promised to sit still until she went to the house for some food. Suddenly a change came over the tree. I knew the sky was black because all the heat, which meant light to me, had died out of the air. A strange odor came up to me from the earth. I knew it — it was the odor which always comes before a thunderstorm.

    I felt alone, cut off from friends, high above the firm earth. I was frightened, and wanted my teacher. I wanted to get down from that tree quickly. But I was no help to myself. There was a moment of terrible silence.

    Then a sudden and violent wind began to shake the tree and its leaves kept coming down all around me. I almost fell. I wanted to jump, but was afraid to do so. I tried to make myself small in the tree, as the branches rubbed against me. Just as I thought that both the tree and I were going to fall, a hand touched me. . . It was my teacher. I held her with all my strength then shook with joy to feel the solid earth under my feet. “



    Miss Sullivan stayed with Helen for many years. She taught Helen how to read, how to write and how to speak. She helped her to get ready for school and college. More than anything, Helen wanted to do what others did, and do it just as well.

    In time, Helen did go to college and completed her studies with high honors. But it was a hard struggle. Few of the books she needed were written in the Braille language that the blind could read by touching pages. Miss Sullivan and others had to teach her what was in these books by forming words in her hands.

    The study of geometry and physics was especially difficult. Helen could only learn about squares, triangles, and other geometrical forms by making them with wires. She kept feeling the different shapes of these wires until she could see them in her mind.

    During her second year at college, Miss Keller wrote the story of her life and what college meant to her. This is what she wrote.


    “My first day at Radcliffe College was of great interest. Some powerful force inside me made me test my mind. I wanted to learn if it was as good as that of others.

    I learned many things at college. One thing, I slowly learned was that knowledge does not just mean power, as some people say. Knowledge leads to happiness, because to have it is to know what is true and real.

    To know what great men of the past have thought, said and done is to feel the heartbeat of humanity down through the ages.”


    All of Helen Keller’s knowledge reached her mind through her sense of touch and smell, and of course her feelings.

    To know a flower was to touch it, feel it, and smell it. This sense of touch became greatly developed as she got older.

    She once said that hands speak almost as loudly as words.

    She said the touch of some hands frightened her. The people seem so empty of joy that when she touched their cold fingers it is as if she were shaking hands with a storm.

    She found the hands of others full of sunshine and warmth.

    Strangely enough, Helen Keller learned to love things she could not hear, music for example. She did this through her sense of touch.

    When waves of air beat against her, she felt them. Sometimes she put her hand to a singer’s throat. She often stood for hours with her hands on a piano while it was played. Once, she listened to an organ. Its powerful sounds made her move her body in rhythm with the music.

    She also liked to go to museums.

    She thought she understood sculpture as well as others. Her fingers told her the true size, and the feel of the material.

    What did Helen Keller think of herself?What did she think about the tragic loss of her sight and hearing?This is what she wrote as a young girl:


    “Sometimes a sense of loneliness covers me like a cold mist — I sit alone and wait at life’s shut door. Beyond, there is light and music and sweet friendship, but I may not enter. Silence sits heavy upon my soul.

    Then comes hope with a sweet smile and says softly, ‘There is joy in forgetting one’s self.’ And so I try to make the light in others’ eyes my sun. . . The music in others’ ears my symphony. . . The smile on others’ lips my happiness.”



    Helen Keller was tall and strong. When she spoke, her face looked very alive. It helped give meaning to her words. She often felt the faces of close friends when she was talking to them to discover their feelings. She and Miss Sullivan both were known for their sense of humor. They enjoyed jokes and laughing at funny things that happened to themselves or others.

    Helen Keller had to work hard to support herself after she finished college. She spoke to many groups around the country. She wrote several books. And she made one movie based on her life. Her main goal was to increase public interest in the difficulties of people with physical problems.

    The work Helen Keller and Anne Sullivan did has been written and talked about for many years. Their success showed how people can conquer great difficulties.

    Anne Sullivan died in nineteen thirty-six, blind herself. Before Miss Sullivan died, Helen wrote and said many kind things about her.


    “It was the genius of my teacher, her sympathy, her love which made my first years of education so beautiful.

    My teacher is so near to me that I do not think of myself as apart from her. All the best of me belongs to her. Everything I am today was awakened by her loving touch.”


    Helen Keller died on June first, nineteen sixty-eight. She was eighty-seven years old. Her message of courage and hope remains.



    You have just heard the last part of the story of Helen Keller. Our Special English program was written by Katherine Clarke and produced by Lawan Davis. I’m Shirley Griffith.


    And I’m Ray Freeman. Listen again next week to another PEOPLE IN AMERICA program on the Voice of America.

    “From scrappy Scotties to dignified Great Danes to a famous Akita, dogs always brought joy to Helen Keller.” – Perkins School for the Blind

    Helen Keller and Sir Thomas (Phiz)

    Helen Keller loved dogs, and she always had at least one as a pet from early childhood to the very end of her life. When she was young, she tried to communicate with her dog Belle by finger spelling on her paw. Belle never did learn. “I tried hard to teach her my sign language, but she was dull and inattentive,” wrote Keller. When she attended college, her classmates gave her a Boston bull terrier which she named Sir Thomas. Sir Thomas, more commonly known as Phiz, would accompany her to her classes and wait for her patiently until the class was over. In the 1930s, when Keller visited Japan, she heard the story about the loyal Akita dog named Hachiko. She was given one as a gift, named Kamikaze-Go, but unfortunately the puppy died from distemper shortly after Keller returned to the US. Keller was heartbroken. The Japanese government heard of the news so arrangements were made to send Kamikaze’s younger brother to her. Kenzan-Go, Go-Go for short, lived a full life. Keller helped introduce the Akita breed to the US, and referred to them as “angels in fur”.
    If given the chance to see, the first thing Keller wanted to do was “look into the loyal, trusting eyes of my dogs… whose warm, tender, and playful friendships are so comforting to me.”

    “They have always been my companions. A dog has never failed me.” – Helen Keller

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    Helen Keller and the Dog Breed She Brought to the USA

    Helen Keller (1880-1968), the legendary speaker, author, and political activist who overcame deafness and blindness, made an often-overlooked contribution to American dog lovers; she introduced the Akita breed to the United States.

    Upon her visit to Japan in 1937, Keller became familiar with the Akita, and she was so impressed that she mentioned she would like to have one some day. Within a month, she received one as a gift. This dog, Kamikaze-go, sadly died from distemper eight months later. In that short time, he had made such an impression on Keller, that she wrote, “If ever there was an angel in fur, it was Kamikaze. I know I shall never feel quite the same tenderness for any other pet. The Akita dog has all the qualities that appeal to me – he is gentle, companionable and trusty.”

    Upon hearing of Kamikaze’s untimely death, the government of Japan presented Keller with a replacement. The new dog, which was a brother to Kamikaze-go, was named Kenzan-go. She received Kenzan-go in July 1938.

    Kamikaze-go and Kenzan-go are credited as the first two Akitas in the United States. Within a year of Kenzan-go’s arrival, a breed standard was established for dog shows. It was the conclusion of World War II, however, that Akitas really began to multiply in the USA. Soldiers who had served in Japan shared Keller’s fascination with the breed’s loyalty and charm.

    Read more fun facts about dogs.

    Read more fun facts about Japan.