Sophia Fowler Gallaudet

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Sophia Fowler Gallaudet
Born Sophia Fowler
(1798-03-20)March 20, 1798
Died May 13, 1877(1877-05-13) (aged 79)
Spouse(s) Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet

Sophia Fowler Gallaudet (March 20, 1798 – May 13, 1877) was the wife of Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet. As the founding matron of the school that became Gallaudet University, she played an important role in deaf history, even playing a key role in lobbying Congressmen in the effort to establish Gallaudet (then the "National Deaf-Mute College"). She was appointed to be the first matron of the Columbia Institution on May 30, 1857 and held the position for nine years, until August 1, 1866.[1]


She was born as Sophia Fowler near the town of Guilford, Connecticut on March 20, 1798, to Miner Fowler and Rachel Hall. Born deaf, she first attended school at age 19, starting (along with her sister Parnel) at the new school for the Deaf in Hartford in 1817 and continued her studies until the Spring of 1821.[1]

She married Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet on August 29, 1821 and had eight children: Thomas H. (1822–1902), Sophia (1824–1865), Peter Wallace (1827–1903), Jane Hall (1827–1853), William Lewis (1829–1887), Alice Cogswell (1833–1891), Catherine "Kate" Fowler (1831–1917), Edward Miner (1837–1917).[1]

She died on May 13, 1877 in Washington, District of Columbia, United States.[1]

See also

  • "Sophia Fowler Gallaudet," by Mrs. George T. Sanders, Silent Worker, February 1914, page 87 (image 7) and page 93 (image 13).


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 "Sophia Fowler Gallaudet". Gallaudet University. Retrieved 2013-10-29.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>