Online Encyclopedia

APPLIANCES FOR EDUCATIONAL

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V04, Page 72 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
Spread the word: del.icio.us del.icio.us it!
APPLIANCES FOR EDUCATIONAL WORK The apparatus for writing point alphabets has already been described. Frank H. Hall, former superintendent of the School for the Blind, Jacksonville, Ill., U.S.A., has invented a Braille typewriter and stereotype maker; the latter embosses metal plates from which any number of copies can be printed. An autornatic Braille-writer has been brought out in Germany, and William B. Wait (principal of the Institution for the Blind in New York City) has invented a machine for writing New York point. These machines are expensive, but A. Wayne of Birmingham has brought A 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 OaODO'o0 9 0 + — X — O D O L d a opening in the board for pin; B and C, pin. out a cheap and effective Braille-writer. H. Stainsby, secretary of the Birmingham institution, and Wayne have invented a machine for writing Braille shorthand. Many boards have been constructed to enable the blind to work arithmetical problems. The one which is most used was invented by the Rev. W. Taylor. The board has star-shaped openings in which a square pin fits in eight different positions. The pin has on one end a plain ridge and on the other a notched ridge; sixteen characters can be formed with the two ends. The board is also used for algebra, another set of type furnishing the algebraic symbols. Books are prepared with raised geometrical diagrams; figures can be formed with bent wires on cushions, or on paper with a toothed wheel attached to one end of a pair of compasses. Geography is studied by means of relief maps, manufactured in wood or paper. The physical maps and globes prepared for seeing children are used also for the blind. Chiefly owing to the unremitting energy and liberality of Dr T. R. Armitage, in connexion with the British and Foreign Blind Association, all school appliances for the blind have been greatly improved and cheapened. EMPLOYMENT Reference has been made to the fact that music in its various branches furnishes the best and most lucrative employment for the blind. But those who have not the ability, or are too old to be trained for music or some other profession, must depend upon handicrafts for their support. The principal ones taught in the various institutions are the making of baskets, brushes, mats, sacks, ships' fenders, brooms and mattresses, upholstery, wire-work, chair-caning, wood-chopping, &c. Females are taught to make fancy baskets and brushes, chair-caning, knitting, netting, weaving, sewing—hand and machine—crocheting, &c. It is difficult to find employment for blind girls. It is hoped that typewriting and massage will prove remunerative. The blind, whether educated for the church, trained as teachers, musicians, pianoforte-tuners, or for any other trade or occupation, generally require assistance at the outset. They need help in finding suitable employment, recommendations for establishing a connexion, pecuniary assistance in providing outfits of books, tools, instruments,.&c., help in the selection and purchase of the best materials at the lowest wholesale rates, in the sale of their manufactured goods in the best markets, and if overtaken by reverses, judicious and timely help towards a fresh start. Every institution should keep in touch with its old pupils. The superintendent who carefully studies the successes and failures of his pupils when they go into the world, will more wisely direct the work and energies of his present and future students. Within recent years great improvements have been made in some of the progressive workshops for the blind. At the conference in London in 1902 Mr T. Stoddart gave the following information in regard to the work in Glasgow:—" We are building very extensive additions to our workshops, which will enable us to accommodate 600 blind people. We mean to employ the most up-to-date methods, and are introducing electric power to drive the machinery and light the workshops. We have to do with the average blind adult recently deprived of sight after he has attained an age of from 25 to 40 or even 50 years. In Glasgow we have developed an industry eminently suitable for the employment of the blind, namely, the manufacture of new and the remaking of old bedding. There are industries which are purely local, where certain articles of manufacture largely used in one district are useless, or nearly so, in another; but the field in which this industry may be promoted is practically without limit. It is perhaps the employment par excellence for the blind, and among other advantages it has the following to recommend it: employment is provided for the blind of both sexes and of all ages; there is no accumulation nor deterioration of stock; it yields an excellent profit, and its use is universal. We have been pushing this industry for years, our annual turnover in this particular department having exceeded £7000, and as we find it so suited to the capabilities of all grades of blind people, it is our intention to provide facilities for doing a turnover of three times that amount. Instead of the thirty sewing-machines which we have at present running by power, we hope to employ 100 blind women. At cork-fender-making, also an industry of the most suitable kind, we are at present employing about thirty workers. It is also our intention to greatly develop and extend our mat-making department." In the United States many blind persons are engaged in agricultural pursuits, and some are very successful in commercial pursuits. When a man loses his sight in adult life, if he can possibly follow the business in which he has previously been engaged, it is the best course for him. In the present day, work in manufactories is subdivided to such an extent that often some one portion can be done by a blind person; but it needs the interest of some enthusiastic believer in the capabilities of the blind to persuade the seeing manager that blind people can be safely employed in factories. In England, at the time of the royal commission of 1889, upwards of 8000 blind persons, above the age of 21, were in receipt of relief from the guardians, of whom no less than 3278 were resident in workhouses or workhouse infirmaries. The !***********!***#!****!* *!*******************#** ***!!!**#!****!****!***0 #P*****!**********!!*!** ******P****!!***!******* 0****qr*.******!********** PN*****!*****P*****P**** *P**!****P***!*!*******P *********!******!#*#**** !#*#**#***#******#***** 0*0**0*00**!**********!! **!******!****!*!****.*** *#**********0***#!*#*!!* **!******!*!*o******!#*! rf B c 8 U census returns for 1901 indicate that the number at that time was equally large. It would certainly be more economical to establish workshops where the able-bodied adult blind can be trained in some handicraft and employed. The papers read at the various conferences show that, even under the most favourable circumstances, some are not able to earn enough for their support; nevertheless, employment improves their condition; there is no greater calamity than to live a life of compulsory idleness in total darkness. The cry of the blind is not alms but work. One of the workshops in western America has adopted the motto, " Independence through Industry," and it should be the aim of every civilized country to hasten the time when blindness and pauperism shall no longer be synonymous terms. BIOGRAPHY It may be interesting, in conclusion, to mention some of the names of prominent blind people in history: Timoleon (c. 410–336 B.C.), a Greek general. Aufidius, a Roman senator. Bela II. (d. 1141), king of Hungary. John, king of Bohemia (1296–1346), killed in the battle of Crecy. John Zizca (c. 1376–1424), Bohemian general. Basil III. (d. 1462), prince of Moscow. Shah Alam (d. 18o6), the last of the Great Moguls. Diodorus, the instructor of Cicero. Didymus of Alexandria (c. 308–395), mathematician, theologian and linguist. Nicase of Malines (d. 1492), professor of law in the university of Cologne. The degree of doctor of divinity was conferred on him by the university of Louvain, and the pope granted a dispensation suspending the law of the Church, that he might be ordained as a priest. Ludovico Scapinelli (b. 1585), professor at the universities of Bologna, Modena and Pisa. James Schegkius (d. 1587), professor of philosophy and medicine at Tubingen. Franciscus Salinas, professor of music at the university of Salamanca, in the 16th century. Nicholas Bacon (16th century), doctor of laws in the university of Brussels. Count de Pagan of Avignon (b. 1604), mathematician of note. John Milton (1608–1674), the poet. Rev. Richard Lucas (1648–1715), prebendary of Westminster. Nicholas Saunderson (q.v.; 1682–1739). John Stanley (1713–1786), Mus. Bac. Oxon., was born in London in 1713. At seven he began to study music, and made such rapid progress that he was appointed organist of Ali-Hallows, Bread Street, at the age of eleven. He graduated as Mus. Bac. at Oxford when sixteen, and was organist of the Temple church at the age of twenty-one. He composed a number of cantatas, and after the death of Handel he superintended the performance of Handel's oratorios at Covent Garden. He received the degree of doctor of music, and was master of the king's band. Leonard Euler (1707–1783), the celebrated mathematician and astronomer. John Metcalf (b. 1717), road-builder and contractor. Sir John Fielding (d. 178o), eminent lawyer and magistrate. Thomas Blacklock (q.v.; 1721-1791), Scottish scholar and poet. Francois Huber (1750–1831), Swiss naturalist, noted for his observations on bees. Edward Rushton (b. 1756). At six years of age he entered the Liverpool free grammar school, and at eleven shipped for his first voyage in a West India merchantman. On a later voyage he was shipwrecked, and owed his life to the self-sacrifice of a negro. Rushton and the black man swam for their lives to a floating cask; the negro reached it first, saw Rushton about to sink, pushed the cask to the failing lad, and struck out for the shore, but never reached it. This incident made Rushton an enthusiastic champion through life of the cause of the negro. During a voyage to Dominica malignant ophthalmia broke out among the slave cargo, and Rushton caught the disease by attending them in the hold when all others refused help. This attack deprived him of sight, and cut short a promising nautical career at the age of nineteen. He struggled bravely against difficulties, and besides entering successfully into various literary engagements, maintained himself and family as a bookseller. A volume of his poems containing a memoir was published in 1824. Marie Therese von Paradis (b. 1759), the daughter of an imperial councillor in Vienna. She was a godchild of the empress Marie Therese, and as her parents possessed rank and wealth, no expense was spared in her education. Weissem- bourg, a blind man, was her tutor, and she learned to spell with letters cut out of pasteboard, and read words pricked upon cards with pins. She studied the piano with Richter (of Holland) and Kozeluch. She was a highly esteemed pianist, and Mozart wrote a concerto for her; she also attained considerable skill on the organ, in singing and in composition. She made a concert tour of Europe, visiting the principal courts and everywhere achieving great success. She remained four months in England, under the patronage of the queen. On her return to Vienna, through Paris, she met Valentin Hauy. Towards the close of her life she devoted herself to teaching singing and the pianoforte with great success. James Holman (q.v. ; 1786–1857), traveller. William H. Prescott (q.v. ; 1796–1859), the American historian. Several early 19th-century musicians held situations as organ- ists in London; among them Grenville, Scott, Lockhart, Mather, Stiles and Warne. Louis Braille (1809–1852). In 1819 he went to the school fo. the blind in Paris. He became proficient on the organ, and held a post in one of the Paris churches. While a professor at the Institution Nationale des Jeunes Aveugles, he perfected his system of point writing. Alexander Rodenbach, Belgian statesman. When a member of the chamber of deputies, in 1836, he introduced and succeeded in establishing by law the right of blind and deaf-mute children to an education. Dr William Moon (1818–1894), the inventor of the type for the blind which bears his name. Rev. W. H. Milburn, D.D. (1823–1903), the American chaplain, known in the United States as The Blind Man Eloquent." He often travelled from thirty to fifty thousand miles a year, speaking and preaching every day. He was three times chaplain of the House of Representatives, and in 1893 was chosen to the chaplaincy of the senate. Dr T. R. Armitage (b. 1824). After spending his youth on the continent, he became a medical student, first at King's College, and afterwards at Paris and Vienna. His career promised to be a brilliant one, but at the age of thirty-six failing sight caused him to abandon his profession. For the rest of his life he devoted his time and fortune to the interests of the blind. I-Ie reorganized the Indigent Blind Visiting Society, endowed its Samaritan fund, founded the British and Foreign Blind Association, and, in conjunction with the late duke of Westminster and others, founded the Royal Normal College. Elizabeth Gilbert (b. 1826), daughter of the bishop of Chichester. She lost her sight at the age of three. She was educated at home, and took her full share of household duties and cares and pleasures. When she was twenty-seven, she began to consider the condition of the poor blind of London. She saw some one must befriend those who had been taught trades, some one who could supply material, give employment or dispose of the articles manufactured. In 1854 her scheme was started, and work was given to six men in their own homes, but the number soon increased. In 1856 a committee was formed, a house converted into a factory, and the Association for Promoting the General Welfare of the Blind was founded. Rev. George Matheson, D.D. (b. 1842), preacher and writer of the Church of Scotland. The degree of D.D. was conferred on him by the university of Edinburgh in 1879, and he was appointed Baird Lecturer in 1881, and St Giles' Lecturer in 1882. Henry Fawcett (1833–1884), professor of political economy at Cambridge, and postmaster-general. W. H. Churchman of Pennsylvania, who was instrumental in establishing the schools for the blind in Tennessee, Indiana and Wisconsin. H. L. Hall, founder of the workshops and home for the blind in Philadelphia; by his energetic management he raised the standard of work for the adult blind throughout America. Man's World [translated by Ernest Thomson] (Paris, 1904); Prof. A. Mell, Encyklopadisches Handbuch des Blindenwesens (Vienna, 1899). (F. J. C.)
End of Article: APPLIANCES FOR EDUCATIONAL
[back]
NATHAN APPLETON (1779-1861)
[next]
APPOGGIATURA (from Ital. appoggiare, to lean upon)

Additional information and Comments

There are no comments yet for this article.
» Add information or comments to this article.
Please link directly to this article:
Highlight the code below, right click and select "copy." Paste it into a website, email, or other HTML document.