Typed Letter Signed on Personal Stationery - 1946
Typed Letter Signed, “Helen Keller,” in pencil on pale green watermarked, personal stationery, New York, August 24, 1946, one page, measuring 11″ x 8.5″. Choice content in extremely fine condition.
Her letter, addressed to “Mr. Ginbel” (a typographical error, as she was writing to C.W. Gimbel, a Methodist lay minister in Richmond, Indiana), contains an appeal for funds for the “American Foundation for the Blind,” in part:
“I am indeed happy to inform you that a Committee on the Deaf-blind of America has been started. It is one of the departments of the American Foundation for the Blind with which I have worked for twenty-two years. All that time there has burned within me an unceasing pain because the problems of the doubly handicapped remain for the most part unsolved, and I have made one attempt after another in their behalf…Try to imagine, if you can, the anguish and horror you would experience bowed down by the twofold weight of blindness and deafness… Still throbbing with natural emotions and desires, you would feel through the sense of touch the existence of a living world, and desperately but vainly you would seek an escape into its healing light. All your pleasures would vanish in a dreadful monotony of silent days… The keenest touch cannot break their immobility. More than any other physically fettered group, they need right teaching and constructive procedures to reclaim them to normal society…”
Keller’s signature is carefully written at the bottom of the page, measuring over 2″ long. A heartfelt letter, with superb content.
Helen Keller (1880-1968), “one of the most widely admired people of the 20th century” (Gallup) was an American author, political activist, and lecturer. She was the first deafblind 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. A prolific author, Keller was well-traveled, and was outspoken in her opposition to war. A member of the Socialist Party of America and the Wobblies, she campaigned for women’s suffrage, workers’ rights, and socialism, as well as many other leftist causes.
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