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Disability History Primary Source Set

Laura Bridgman teaches touch-reading to a younger student.
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Disability History: From Almshouses to Civil Rights

UPDATED IN 2020. The following primary source set, created using materials from the Library of Congress, contains an array of sources focused on Disability History in the United States. Disability has been interwoven into America’s history since the country’s inception through letters, images, newspapers, diaries and other primary sources. The set provides a comprehensive look into a wide range of Library of Congress resources.

In addition, the set includes a summary history of disability in the United States as well as potential classroom activities and standards addressed. Topics such as eugenic sterilization, the education of disabled children, and telegrams between Helen Keller and Alexander Graham Bell combine to create a vivid collection of materials appropriate for research and education alike.