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Letter to Mrs. Hoover from Helen Keller (March 28, 1931)

Transcription of Letter

83 Seminole Avenue, Forest Hills, L.I., N.Y.,

March 28, 1931

Dear Mrs. Hoover,

For some time it has been in my mind to write to you, but I have felt like the little boy who said, "Dear God is very busy on Sundays, He has so many churches to go to, He hasn't time to listen to me." "God is always ready," his mother told him. I am hoping that the mother heart in you may find room for my request.

A world congress of workers for the blind will meet here in New York City next month, under the auspices of the American Foundation for the Blind. The President extended invitations to fifty-two countries to send delegates, and thirty-five nations have responded. It will be the largest and most representative gathering ever held in behalf of the sightless, and it will be the first international congress for the blind to come to America.

While the congress is here, the foreign delegates will be taken on a trip to visit institutions and schools for the blind in the eastern states. Washington is among the cities they are to visit.

It would be wonderful if the First Lady of the land felt like doing something for their entertainment! The date could be arranged to suit your convenience. I realize that this is asking a great deal of one in your position, but I so earnestly desire that the delegates carry back to their countries a pleasant memory of America's interest in the blind, I dare ask your cooperation.

If you received the delegates at the White House, it would stimulate interest all over the world in the cause of the blind and the constructive part America is taking in the movement. You may not know that there are in the world about six million people without sight. A proper census would undoubtedly show that there are many more. Unless (sic) bitter drop in the cup of blessing which has been so bountifully prepared for me.

But I realize that such longings and plans for help are poured into your sympathetic ear constantly. I will not weary you with a longer letter.

We are all very proud that the President has consented to have his picture taken with the delegates.

Hoping for a favorable reply, I am, with kindest greetings to yourself and respectful regards to the President and gratitude for his interest in our work,

Cordially yours,

P.S. I should have told you, there will be about a hundred delegates attending the congress.


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