Was Bell Against Signing?

​No. He taught signing as a young teacher of the deaf, and sometimes signed with students including Helen Keller and with his wife Mabel, who was deaf. Bell’s last words in August 1922 were signed to Mabel.

It’s important to remember that signing In Bell’s lifetime was not the sophisticated system that ASL is today. There were different methods of signing in the 1800s, and many people signed using time-consuming “fingerspelling” with an alphabet glove, spelling out words one letter at a time.

In Bell’s time, deaf persons who only communicated by signing were limited to conversing with people who also knew signing. He believed that Helen Keller’s extraordinary successes proved the value of deaf children interacting with hearing children, as well as others who are hearing impaired.

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website.