Issue: September 18, 2009 - Vol. 38 No. 14
Q. Gallaudet University has had connections to many prominent presidents and politicians, from Abraham Lincoln to Edward Kennedy to Bill Clinton. What is the University’s connection to the first president, George Washington?
Answer: Peter Gallaudet, father of the University’s namesake, Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet is the link. The 1959 book, Voice of the Deaf; a biography of Edward Miner Gallaudet, by Maxine Tull Boatner, states that Peter was the “private secretary to George Washington.” Another connection is the theory that the school colors of buff and blue are based on the colors of the uniform Washington often wore.