Blind stenographer using dictaphone (LOC)

Bain News Service,, publisher.


Blind stenographer using dictaphone


1911 April 27. (date created or published later by Bain)


1 negative : glass ; 5 x 7 in. or smaller.



Title and date from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative.

Photographer's name (Byron, N.Y.) partially visible on negative.

Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress).


Format: Glass negatives.


Rights Info: No known restrictions on publication.


Repository: Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division, Washington, D.C. 20540 USA,


General information about the Bain Collection is available at


Higher resolution image is available (Persistent URL):


Call Number: LC-B2- 2191-9



  • Olinad Rellse 7y

    one of those 'courageous women of the 1910s. it's really a brilliant 'handicapped'. great photo!
  • Erika Morrison Bunda 7y

    Awesome Vintage*~*
  • vkgray 7y

    Would be a great history lesson to compare the workspace here. In the 1960 I worked in a setup much like this.
  • instituto altior 7y

    Un pequeño lente para observar los impresioantes avances del siglo XX
  • Mariano Akerman 7y

    • English. The picture shows a working woman. Considering her blindness, one thinks life was not fair with her. But all of us are in one sense or another limited beings. If looking at this picture, Ortega y Gasset may have said that that she lacking of is precisely what supports her. The photograph may not show a famous person, but it shows a working one—somebody that went beyond natural injustice and apparently transcended it too.

    • Castellano rioplatense. Con los auriculares puestos, esta taquígrafa ciega de principios del siglo XX fue fotografiada mientras trabajaba. Al considerar su ceguera, uno piensa que la vida no fue justa con ella. Pero, de alguna manera u otra, todos somos seres limitados. Importante es lo que hacemos con lo que la vida sí nos dio. Lo que nos falta es lo que nos sostiene, decía Ortega y Gasset. Esta foto acaso no muestre un ser famoso, pero muestra una taquígrafa ciega en plena labor. La imagen sugiere que ella, a la Naturaleza, la trascendió.

    Mariano Akerman - « plus ultra » →

    To meditate | Para meditar →
  • rjones0856 7y

    Is that a picture of Andrew Carnegie on the wall? If this was also taken at the NY Association for the Blind, it would make sense -- he gave them $114,000:
  • susanann photos 7y

    The title for this picture had me stumped. A stenographer writes shorthand, and a typist types on a typewriter. After researching, I've discovered that machines invented around this time had typebars that produced understrokes called "blind writers". Machines with braille only had six (6) keys. Therefore, I don't think this woman was blind. Great picture though.
  • Richard Norton 6y

    The name "Dictaphone" was trademarked by the Columbia Graphophone Company in 1907, which soon became the leading manufacturer of such devices. This perpetuated the use of wax cylinders for voice recording. They had fallen out of favor for music recordings, in favor of disc technology. Dictaphone was spun off into a separate company in 1923 under the leadership of C. King Woodbridge.

  • jwcallahan 6y

    Hi, I'm an admin for a group called Symbols of Our Past, and we'd love to have this added to the group!
  • pennylrichardsca (now at ipernity) 6y

    Hi, I'm an admin for a group called Disability History, and we'd love to have this added to the group!
  • Rob Ketcherside 6y

    This photo is dated 4/27/1911. This should be taken at a display at the first Blind Worker's Exhibition.

    "While [President Taft] spoke, a blind stenographer "took notes" on a specially prepared machine..."

    See articles in the New York Times, for exampe:
    4/16/1911 p 16
    4/23/1911 p 9
    4/27/1911 p 3 (describes stenographer transcribing President Taft's speech)

    Hi, I'm an admin for a group called FLICKR PARA LA HISTORIA , and we'd love to have this added to the group!
  • Der Bana Lini 5y

    in the house we lived we had an blind woman with her blind doughter. I was sometimes playing with thst girl becourse no another child wantet to go there... later they moved and i saw them never again
  • stoppuller 4y

    If she was indeed blind I hope her sens of touch was very correct, otherwise:

  • ESM 4y

    How much memory does that keyboard take?

    Is that a pentium 4?
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