Today, Alexander Graham Bell is mostly known for inventing the telephone. But, one of the central interests in his life was deaf education. Plus, in the United States, he was one of the most prominent proponents of oralism (the method of teaching a deaf child through oral language by using lip reading, speech, and the mimicking of mouth shapes). Like his father before him, Bell spent his whole life studying the physiology of speech. He said that “to ask the value of speech is like asking the value of life.”
After emigrating from England to Canada in 1870 and to the United States a year later, Bell began to teach speech to deaf students using a universal alphabet invented by his father called “Visible Speech.” In 1872 he opened a school in Boston, Massachusetts to train teachers of deaf children.
In general, during and after his death, American society viewed Alexander Graham Bell (1847 – 1922) as a genuine hero. He was famous, wealthy, and influential. Besides having a mother who was deaf, he was always associating himself with people in the deaf community. He worked as a personal teacher of deaf children, and he established a day school in Boston which supported and assisted many deaf children with various special needs. He liked to aid major groups, experts, and service organizations that supported and worked with deaf individuals living inside and outside of the United States.