HELEN KELLER, American humanitarian, died (b. 1880); an American author, activist and lecturer. She was the first deaf and blind person to graduate from college.
The story of how Keller’s teacher, Anne Sullivan, broke through the isolation imposed by a near complete lack of language, allowing the girl to blossom as she learned to communicate, has become known worldwide through the dramatic depictions of the play The Miracle Worker.
What is much less well known is how Keller’s life developed after she completed her education. A prolific author, she was well traveled, and was outspoken in her opposition to war. She campaigned for women’s suffrage, worker’s rights and socialism, as well as many other progressive causes.
Keller never married and when she died in her sleep on June 1, 1968, passing away 26 days before her 88th birthday, at her home in Arcan Ridge near Westport, Connecticut, a service was held in her honor at the National Cathedral in Washington, DC and her ashes were placed there next to her constant companions, Anne Sullivan and Polly Thompson.