The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 38
Making the Deaf Hear—Asylum Mutes Testing A Machine—Those Deaf from Birth and Those Whose Hearing Has Long Been Dead Enabled to Hear Their Own Voices Once More—A Veteran Editor's Wager.
The experiment of making the deaf to hear and the mute to speak was tried yesterday in the Pennsylvania Institution for the Deaf and Dumb by Mr. R. S. Rhodes, of Chicago, who, having long experienced the privation of infirm auditory organs, invented a carbon disc, the testing of which as a conductor of sound was the object of yesterday's trial. Those who came to see how the new invention would work were welcomed by the superintendent, and accommodated with chairs in the ample parlors of the institution.
Among those present were E. Mortimer Lewis, David P. Brown and George P. Kimball. Not a few of the interested auditors were enabled to follow the proceedings by means of Audiphones, and all such cheerfully added their testimony to the great amelioration of what was in some cases almost total deafness of many years' standing. The apparatus for the experiments consisted of a grand piano and several Audiphones.
Mr. Rhodes, the inventor, remarked introductorily that only those whose auditory nerve was not wholly dead could be benefited. Very few, however, even of those born deaf, are totally without sense of sound, hence nearly all of those educated in the asylums may be taught to speak, inasmuch as their dumbness is owing solely to their want of use of the organs of speech.