Please drop in between 6 – 7:00 p.m. to view the Wilton Laurent Clerc Papers exhibit which was featured recently at the Wilton Historical Society (WHS). You’ll also be able to meet and interact with Wilton High School ASL (American Sign Language) students and learn about the Laurent Clerc Stamp Project.
From the WHS exhibit: Laurent Clerc was a French immigrant and deaf man born in the late 18th century, a time when opportunities for education for the deaf were limited. He overcame those obstacles and ultimately co-founded the American School for the Deaf in Hartford, Connecticut in 1817, which opened new possibilities for the deaf community. This remains the oldest active school for deaf students in the United States. Francis Clerc Ogden carried on this tradition of selflessness a century later, becoming one of the town’s most well-known residents thanks to his service efforts and involvement in countless community organizations. In 1938, he became one of the first members of the Wilton Historical Society, created in order to preserve the town’s past and share its history with the public. Laurent Clerc and his great-grandson Francis Clerc Ogden share more than just a name. Though Francis was born 19 years after Laurent’s death in 1869, their respective lifes’ work demonstrates a family tradition of service passed down between generations.