Born in Cork, Ireland; deafened at age 5 from scarlet fever. Privately tutored, then attended the Asylum for the Education of Deaf and Dumb Children of the Poor in Bermondsey, south London. Became a junior teacher at a branch of the school in Margate, Kent, until 1883, when he left teaching and returned to Ireland. Student at Gallaudet College 1884-1887 (first British student at Gallaudet), but apparently did not graduate; Gallaudet later awarded him an honorary B.D. (1901). Missionary to the deaf in Belfast. Invited to be president of the Deaf Mute Association, which lasted only 15 months, 1888-1889, apparently due to internal politics. In 1890, founded The British Deaf and Dumb Association, which became today's British Deaf Association. First superintendent of the Ulster Institute for the Deaf. Also published a monthly magazine for the deaf, The Messenger. Died from injuries received when he attempted to break up a fight at a gala deaf event.
Looking Back, p.97-108; Deaf Lives, p.124; Representative Deaf Persons [second edition], following p.10; Peeps into the Deaf World, p.336-338.
21 April 1861-16 December 1918