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The conservation of the child

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Pages: 204

Book format: An electronic version of a printed book that can be read on a computer or handheld device designed specifically for this purpose.

Publisher: Date:8/5/2009 - General Books LLC

By: Arthur Holmes

Excerpt from book: teaching and writing on his favorite subjects. Later, on account of political causes, he came to America, where he continued his interest in the education of idiots and was instrumental in establishing some of our largest and most flourishing institutions for the feeble-minded. Guggenbiihl's Work with Cretins.—The work in Paris, in Germany, and in Switzerland all reached their efflorescence about the year 1842. The story of Guggenbuhl and his Alpine Cretin Colony forms one of the most fascinating and romantic in this particular field. Inspired with a lofty purpose to help these unfortunates by seeing a poor cretin praying by a roadside shrine, he settled in 1836 in the Valley of Olienthal, Switzerland, for two years to study more closely their condition. After that he accepted a position in an asylum near Berne in order that he might come in sympathetic contact with cretins and receive as much scientific preparation as possible for his life work. His enthusiastic temperament moved him to send a stirring appeal to the Swiss Association for the Advancement of Science in a little pamphlet called "Christianity and Humanity in Regard to Cretinism in Switzerland." Out of the interest aroused in this particular class of defectives came the plan of forming a colony for their training and treatment. In 1842 a plantation on the Abendberg near Interlaken, Canton Berne, was Abendberg secured, 4000 feet above the sea, over a point where cretinism flourished in the valley below, and cottages were erected upon the southern slope, with a hospital building in charge of the Evangelical Sisters of Mercy or Diakonissen. To this sanatorium were brought little men and women, dwarfs in body and mind, to see what fresh air, clear sunlight, and scenery of unsurpassed grandeur would do...  

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