Dates Visited: July 11, 2015 and August 22, 2015
Parking: there is a parking lot located next to the memorial with over a dozen or so parking spaces. There are also parking lots and off street parking nearby.
Although she is known more for her success as a teacher and most notably working with Hellen Keller in Tuscumbia, Alabama, and Boston, Massachusetts, Anne Sullivan is actually a product of Feeding Hills (a sub section of Agawam), Massachusetts.
I especially like how the trees still have leaves and the flowers are in bloom since I originally took these photos in the summer of last year. It makes me yearn for the long spring and summer days.
I am never completely satisfied with my photos. So, I made two trips to this memorial. My biggest gripe with the first set of photos was there were too many cars and people in the background. But, even when I went back another day earlier in the daytime there was still a lot of activity. It is located by a busy intersection so it was unavoidable. You can see the difference in the shadowing and angle of the sun from my two visits.
Sullivan lost her vision at an early age due to an infectious eye disease. She would receive a series of treatments which considerably improved her vision while she was a student at Perkins School for the Blind in Boston. This undoubtedly inspired her to work with other people who were visually impaired and challenged in other ways.
The centerpiece of the park is the monument of Anne Sullivan sitting with Helen Keller. The intensity in her stare is palpable. The sculpture, created by the Romanian-American sculptor Mico Kaufman, captures the moment Anne Sullivan successfully teaches Helen Keller her first word – “water.” The statue was dedicated on June 28, 1992.
The park is well kept and there are many places to sit. A gazebo stands off to the side as well. It would be a peaceful place to relax and unwind, except the fact it is located at a busy intersection.
There are additional monuments in the park.
This memorial is another tribute to Anne Sullivan’s work with Helen Keller. The inscription reads, “Anne Sullivan…Teacher of Helen Keller. Heroic friend of the deaf and blind. Native of Feeding Hills.”
This memorial is a tribute to the Agawam Militia who trained on this land during the revolutionary War. I am always fascinated at how seemingly ordinary places like a busy intersection has so much history and significance. In fact, the land you are standng on, or the land your house or apartment building was built upon most certainly has a hidden history you are not privy to.
The trees at the Anne Sullivan memorial Park are very impressive, particularly when they still have their leaves.
The last monument I photographed at the park names the people on the memorial committee. If you look closely, you may notice the inscription is also written in braille.