Showing posts with label blindness. Show all posts
Showing posts with label blindness. Show all posts

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Letter of the Day: September 30

Wash. D.C. Sept 30 80

Hon. Alexander Ramsey

Sec of War


Dear Sir


I have the honor herewith most respectfully to request that I may be transferred from my present position in the Record and Pension Division of the Surgeon General’s Office to some other employment under the War Department for the reason that I am afflicted with a very serious trouble in my eyes; which has now become so aggravated by the gas light under which I have to work as to threaten blindness.


Dr. Loring the occulist who has for some time been treating my eyes assures me that this work by gas light will eventually cause the loss of sight.


I forward with this his statement of the matter, and therefore request that you will have the kindness to cause my transfer to someplace where I will not have the difficulty of the gas light, or if possible to some position as messenger or the like. I was appointed upon the recommendation of the Maryland delegation + also f Mr. Pachico of Cal. Being gazette I believe to that state.


Very Respectfully,

Your Obt. Servant

Alfred de Ronceray

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Letter of the Day, February 28. Reply to "What can the blind see in their dreams"?

From the personal papers of Royal de Rohan Barondes (b.12/10/1896), of California. A veteran of the US Army Medical Department for both world wars, Barondes researched both surgical instruments and pharmaceuticals in his private practice. His initial query has been previously posted as the February 24th Letter of the Day.

State of California
Department of Education
California School for the Blind
3001 Derby Street
Berkeley, California

February 28, 1938

Dr. R. de R. Barondes
291 Geary Street
San Francisco, California

Dear Dr. Barondes:

In answer to your letter of February 24 I will say first that there is some literature on the imagery of those born totally blind. I do not have it in hand just at present but could secure it for you if you so desire.

Helen Keller has a most interesting book called “The World I Live In.” In it she discusses the senses and touches somewhat on her dream world. It must be remembered, of course, that Helen lost her sight when she was about eighteen months old and, therefore, must have residuary sense impressions on which to draw. This would be largely true of many persons totally blind even where sight was lost very early.

The case of a person born totally blind is very rare. We have, however, at the present time one such authentic case, that of a young woman who is a graduate student in our music department. You might like to question her and I am very sure that she would consent to being questioned.

If your time permits you are perfectly welcome to visit the School and I shall be happy to make arrangements for the carrying out of any investigation you might like to make.

Very truly yours,

R.S. French


Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Letter of the Day, February 24

From the personal papers of Royal de Rohan Barondes (b.12/10/1896), of California. A veteran of the US Army Medical Department for both world wars, Barondes researched both surgical instruments and pharmaceuticals in his private practice.

February 24, 1938

The Superintendent,
California School for the Blind.
Berkeley, California.

Dear Sir:

Being more or less interested in medical research, I write you hoping you might be able to inform me regarding the following: I am curious to learn if those blind from birth ever dream of “seeing”, i.e., are they able in their own manner, to describe objects that appear in their dreams. They no doubt may dream they feel certain objects and describe them satisfactorily such as being heavy, cold, hot, sharp, etc., but this is not what I have reference to. It is said one my not dream or anything unless one has had a similar experience of waking life: we know this not to be an actual fact.

Not having the opportunity to interrogate those so unfortunately handicapped, I thought perhaps you might be able to give me the information as to the description of the dreams of the blind and the mute.

Thanking you kindly for any information you may send me, I am,

Very yours truly, R. De r. Barondes

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


Today we had a request for images of people who were blinded by poisonous gas. If the requester had asked for rabbits we would have been in business, but we had nada for those two conditions together. Some blindness, some poisonous gas, but the Venn diagram did not converge.

I did find, however, some interesting pictures about blindness, and here they are.

Reeve 870, A blinded French soldier, World War 1

Reeve 871, A blinded French soldier and his bride, World War 1

AEF007 (American Expeditionary Forces)
Blind French soldiers, patients in the department organized by Miss Winnifred Hope for the re-education of the blind. Base Hospital number 115, Hotel Ruhl. Base Laboratory Hospital Center Vichy, France. 08/1918[?].

Reeve 14494: American Red Cross workrooms. Paris, Seine, France. Stitching eye bandages on the machine in the American Red Cross workrooms for surgical dressings, rue de la Faisanderie, Paris. These bandages are used largely for gas cases.