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Helen Keller Biography (Helen Adams Keller): Author and Activist
Famous for : being an inspirational author and activist, dispite the fact that she was both deaf and blind from the age of 19 months.
Keller details : Born - June 27, 1880 Alabama, USA / Died - June 1, 1968 United States of America

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Helen Keller Bio

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Helen Keller was a pioneer of education for the deaf and blind and an open advocate for women's rights. She is best known for overcoming her own challenges with being deaf and blind and advocating better educational and working conditions for the seeing and hearing disabled.

Helen Adams Keller was born to Captain Arthur Henley Keller and Kate Adams Keller on June 27, 1880 in Tuscumbia, Alabama. At the time of her birth she had all of her sight and full hearing. It wasn't until she was nineteen months old that she lost her ability to see and hear. According to documents, she fell ill with a severe fever and was expected to die. Although young Helen managed to survive what doctors now believe to be either scarlet fever or meningitis, she lost her sight and hearing during the ordeal.

As a young child Helen Keller threw constant temper tantrums by throwing dishes and destroying other belongings. Her parents' relatives believed she should be institutionalized. Desperate for help, Mrs. Keller visited a local doctor who advised her to consult with Alexander Graham Bell, inventor of the telephone and advocate for the proper education for deaf children.

Through Mr. Bell, Mrs. Keller came by Anne Sullivan, a partially blind woman who had been taught at a local school and was willing to teach little Helen Keller. Anne moved onto the Keller property and took Helen into her little cottage to live and learn. Helen continued to throw tantrums while Anne taught her words by spelling them on her hand. At first Helen didn't understand, but, after a month, Anne and Helen made a connection at the family well. "Water" was the first word the Helen really seemed to understand and from that day forward she made amazing progress with communication.

Helen Keller learned to read Braille, write, and even speak to some degree. With the help of Anne she attended Cambridge School for Young Ladies and later Radcliff College. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1904, a first for a deafblind person.

Anne married John Albert Macy, a man she and Helen met during their time at Radcliff who helped Helen publish her books, in 1905 and the three of them moved in together. John helped Keller publish "The Story of My Life", "The World I Live In", and "Out of the Dark".

Helen and Anne toured the world giving lectures and even performances about their experiences together and the world of the deafblind. After their successes in different sections of society and film, Anne, John, and Helen moved to Forest Hills, New York where Helen became an advocate for the American Foundation for the Blind to help improve education and working conditions for blind people.

Helen Keller survived two successive teachers after Anne Sullivan's death in 1936 and eventually passed away in 1968 four years after receiving the Presidential Medal of Freedom for her work on educational and working rights for the blind around the world. One year after receiving the medal she was inducted into the Women's Hall of Fame at the World's Fair in New York.

Keller's ashes rest next to Anne Sullivan's at the National Cathedral in Washington DC. "The Unconquered", a documentary based on Helen's life, won the Academy Award for best documentary. "The Miracle Worker", a play based on Anne and Helen's first struggles with communication, was eventually made into a movie and won Oscars for actresses in 1962.

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Helen Keller Quotes Helen Keller Quotes

Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing.
Helen Keller - Courage
- Life - Risk - Encouragement

It is a mistake always to contemplate the good and ignore the evil, because by making people neglectful it lets in disaster. There is a dangerous optimism of ignorance and indifference.
Helen Keller - Challenges
- People - Mistakes - Optimistic

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Helen Keller Biography

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