BY: DARREN RUSSEK It was in the 16th century when Geronimo Cardano, an Italian physician proclaimed that the deaf could be taught to understand written combinations of symbols by associating them with what they represented. By the 1800s, different methods and forms of sign language already existed in Europe but not the U.S. In Connecticut, Galluadet very much wanted to figure out a way to educate his neighbors deaf daughter and so he travelled all over Europe. After many rejections he ended up in France where he met a man named Laurent Clerc whom he convinced to travel back to America. The two brilliant men started the Asylum for the Education and Instruction of Deaf and Dumb Persons in April of 1817. The school is now called the American School for the Deaf (which you can further explore using the link below…) The American School for the Deaf There are different forms of Sign Language for different countries, similar to how Americans speak English compared to Africans speaking African, or Spanish people speaking Spanish. To the right is illustrations of the American Sign Language alphabet. Founded in 1864 by an Act of Congress, its charter was signed by Abraham Lincoln. It is now the world leader in Liberal Education and career development for deaf and hard of hearing undergraduate students. Galluadet has 15,000 proud alumni, 986 undergraduate students, and 403 graduate students.