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Community Roots: Selections from the Local Legacies Project
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Class at Burrows Hill School, 1894
Teacher Eloise Ellis with six of her pupils in front of the Burrows Hill School, 1894. Photo: Hebron Historical Society

Legacy of Our Education

Project features two of Connecticut's outstanding educational institutions: the American School for the Deaf in West Hartford and Burrows Hill School in Hebron.

Founded in 1817, the American School for the Deaf is the nation's oldest school for deaf and hard-of-hearing people, the oldest special education facility in the United States, and the birthplace of American Sign Language (ASL). The national system of deaf education was based on techniques first developed at the school. The school currently serves approximately 250 students from several states and some foreign countries, but approximately 90 percent of the students are from Connecticut. Programs are offered for deaf and hard-of-hearing infants, toddlers, children, teens, and adults; family support is also provided. The school helps the deaf and hard-of-hearing to find and maintain productive employment and aids in living arrangements as well.

There are several one-room school houses located in Hebron, among them, the Burrows School. The school has been authentically restored and is open to the public for tours by the local historical society. Children there enjoy the annual tradition of School House Days, in which third-grade students, taught by teachers dressed in period garb, learn about 19th-century life and schools.

Project documentation includes a brief synopsis of both facilities.

Originally submitted by: John B. Larson, Representative (1st District).



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The Local Legacies project provides a "snapshot" of American Culture as it was expressed in spring of 2000. Consequently, it is not being updated with new or revised information with the exception of "Related Website" links.

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