Episode 5 – A Look Into the Past with Blind History Lady, Peggy Chong
All too often we encounter people who we think cannot possibly do the same things we can do. Any of us who happen to be blind can tell you of the many times we are told that we cannot do something simply because we do not see or we cannot see well. The result of these beliefs held by many is that the unemployment rate among employable blind people, according to the U.S. Census, is nearly 70%. Did you know that this rate increased from 50% in 1910 to the 70% rate we see today? Did you know that by 1940 there were three blind people participating in the U.S. House of Representatives and two in the Senate?
In our episode today we meet Peggy Chong who is known as The Blind History Lady. Peggy tells us many stories of unstoppable blind people. She gives us a glimpse of life in the late 1800s and the first half of the 20th century and how blindness and blind people were treated. Her stories will surprise you and they will leave you wanting to know more.
Some directories do not show full show notes. For the complete transcription please visit https://michaelhingson.com/podcast
About our Guest:
Peggy Chong’s book in print, Don Mahoney: Television Star is on the shelves at many book sellers. She writes and lectures as The Blind History Lady. Her infatuation with stories she heard of those she now calls her “Blind Ancestors” surprised and inspired her to learn more, for herself at first and then bring their light to the world. Peggy researches their stories and brings to life the REAL struggles of what it was and is still, to be a blind person in the United States.
Peggy is a long-time researcher and Historical author of many articles on the blind in the United States. She has written for publications that include The Braille Monitor, Dialogue Magazine, Future Reflections, The Minnesota Bulletin and the Iowa History Journal.
Currently, she chairs the Preservation of Historical Documents for the National Federation of the Blind of Colorado, to save the single-source files, records, news clippings and correspondence of the blind of Colorado dating back to 1915.
About the Host:
Michael Hingson is a New York Times best-selling author, international lecturer, and Chief Vision Officer for accessiBe. Michael, blind since birth, survived the 9/11 attacks with the help of his guide dog Roselle. This story is the subject of his best-selling book, Thunder Dog.
Michael gives over 100 presentations around the world each year speaking to influential groups such as Exxon Mobile, AT&T, Federal Express, Scripps College, Rutgers University, Children’s Hospital, and the American Red Cross just to name a few. He is Ambassador for the National Braille Literacy Campaign for the National Federation of the Blind and also serves as Ambassador for the American Humane Association’s 2012 Hero Dog Awards. https://michaelhingson.com
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Michael Hingson 00:00
Access Cast and accessiBe Initiative presents Unstoppable Mindset. The podcast we’re inclusion, diversity and the unexpected meet. Hi, I’m Michael Hingson, Chief Vision Officer for accessiBe and the author of the number one New York Times bestselling book, Thunder dog, the story of a blind man, his guide dog and the triumph of trust. Thanks for joining me on my podcast as we explore our own blinding fears of inclusion unacceptance and our resistance to change. We will discover the idea that no matter the situation, or the people we encounter, our own fears, and prejudices often are our strongest barriers to moving forward. The unstoppable mindset podcast is sponsored by accessiBe, that’s a c c e s s i capital B e. Visit www.accessibe.com to learn how you can make your website accessible for persons with disabilities. And to help make the internet fully inclusive by the year 2025. Glad you dropped by we’re happy to meet you and to have you here with us.
Michael Hingson 01:20
Welcome to another episode of The Unstoppable Mindset podcast. I’m your host, Mike Hingson. And we have today a person who I regard as a very special guest, and I hope you will as well. And besides that she’s kind of fun. I want you to meet Peggy Chong, who is known by many as the blind history lady Peggy, welcome.
Peggy Chong 01:42
Well, thank you very much for having me on.
Michael Hingson 01:45
Well, we’re glad you’re here. So I want you to start if you would, by telling us just a little bit about you, things that you want people to know. And, and maybe things you don’t want people to know. But go ahead and it’s your turn.
Peggy Chong 02:00
Thank you very much. I work as the blind history lady, and it is what I am doing in my quote, retirement. I research and write stories about what I call our blind ancestors. I hated history in school. I didn’t like writing in school. I did like researching. I did like that part. When I was growing up, I was involved in the blind community as a child. Because my mother was blind. She went to the North Dakota School for the Blind, and was very close to her classmates and those that she spent a lot of time with, during each year while she was at the school. Back when she went to the School for the Blind. It was located in Bathgate, North Dakota. And so she didn’t get home. Most years except for Christmas, maybe sometimes at Easter. So she didn’t see her family very much. Her school family was much closer to her in many ways. So I knew the blind piano tuners and the door to door salesman and the rug weavers and stuff growing up. When I got to be, oh, you know, like 20, you know, teenage years and stuff, when we all know everything and start losing it after that. I was rather embarrassed by them. Because I was starting to meet blind lawyers and blind businessmen, blind people who had nice homes and jobs and the blind people that I knew the old people who were probably only in their 50s younger than I am now. But they had a small trailer house, or a very small house. Not fancy. They had small apartments. I remember we visited one couple frequently and they had a basement apartment. It was very dark. They were both totally blind. And my dad was over six feet tall. So he always had to walk with his head down because bump on all the pipes and the beams in the basement. But they were fun people and I didn’t appreciate them at the time. What I didn’t understand back then is they were working people they were supporting themselves. They were trailblazers. They may have only been the blind drug Weaver or the blind door to door salesman in my mind, but they were the ones who made the path for the blind lawyers and the blind business people who have the nice offices. And so then back in the late 70s Because I was so familiar with the old guard as they were known. I was given the task of cleaning out all Old Files at the National Federation of the Blind of Minnesota’s offices, because they said, you’ll know these people, you’ll recognize if there’s something that’s important to keep or not. The task was to keep all the basic important records, the minutes, the financials, any important correspondence and so on those records dated back to 1919. And every so often, I’d stop and read a little bit of this, read a little bit of that. And the more I read, the more I kept saving. And putting aside even though it was supposed to go in the trash pile, because it was interesting to me, especially when I started to read about our blind congressman, our blind congressman, was somebody I didn’t know about who was this blind Congressman that they were visiting in the 1920s, to try and get them to support these legislation.
Peggy Chong 05:58
So I put it aside. And after I finished that task, I checked out who the blind Congressman was, and his name was Thomas David Shaw, who was a blind man from the Minneapolis St. Paul area. An attorney, who I always joke about went blind because of smoking. He was an attorney who was on a break in North Dakota courtroom, they had just in salt stalled this new electric cigarette lighter, and he liked new things. And he tried out the electric cigarette lighter, however, it shorted out and blew him across the room. And within a few weeks, he lost all of his vision. So he didn’t think he could be a lawyer anymore. He spent a lot of money and trying to get his vision back. When he ran out of money. His friend said, Well, hey, why don’t you come here and give a speech for me here. He was a great orator. And give a speech for me there. And pretty soon somebody said, Well, why don’t you run for Congress. And he did. So he was elected to Congress, we had a blind congressman in 1914. He served until 1925, when he went over to the US Senate. And he stayed there until his death in 1935. His family were dead serious when I interviewed his family that Thomas Shaw had been killed, murdered by the, what they said was the mafia arm of the Democratic Party. And when you start to put all the evidence together, back from our time, looking back, they, they have a lot of circumstantial evidence that could have probably bought brought some charges against the driver of the vehicle, who ran him down just before Christmas. So because of Thomas’s story, I got really interested in the stories of our blind ancestors, I have been collecting data ever since the 70s. And finally, then, in about 2014, or so my husband basically told me either get rid of that stuff, or do something with it, because it’s crowding the den. So I did, I began to write for dialogue magazine, I wrote their history column for about six years, and have been getting articles in magazines if I can, and newspapers about the blind ancestors that I research and find them fascinating, because these are men and women who, in the 1800s, early 1900s, were making a living supporting families, vibrant parts of their community. And they didn’t have the benefits that we have today as blind people. They didn’t have many of them the luxury of a good education, although a lot of the people I do research were students at schools for the blind, but many of them who went blind in their 20s 30s 40s did not have that opportunity. There was no rehabilitation services for adults, they had to learn on their own. And in several cases, they had to learn more than one code because just like in the schools for the blind, English may come in American Braille. But the science was in New York point, and maybe some of the classes for History or English or whatever, had novels that they were to read in moon type or a raised printing of some sort. So these men and women, especially the ones I research, I admire because, without rehabilitate without any financial support without any classes, they taught themselves alternative techniques for reading and writing, keeping their accounts relearning how to do their farming, how to raise their animals, how to run their stores, how to be a lawyer, everything, and I admire them for the things that they do. So I try to dig down deep, interviewing as many of the descendants as I can, or finding any of the records they’ve left behind to tell their story of the encouragement that they can provide our history can provide is, I think, very valuable today. The old adage, when we were in school, you know, if you don’t learn your history, you’re destined to repeat it. That’s very true with blindness as well. I don’t think we have sometimes as blind people as much ingenuity, or get up and go because we haven’t hit rock bottom like many of them did.
Michael Hingson 11:09
Well, I think it’s definitely true that the world has changed. And I think you’re right. We some of us haven’t hit rock bottom, like they did. But I wonder if they viewed it as rock bottom, or how they viewed their lives at the time, because what they did was, they did move on. And I wonder if they just viewed it as kind of a challenge to just keep moving forward, something that we don’t do as much today, in part because we have a lot of the conveniences and other things that maybe they didn’t have access to?
Peggy Chong 11:51
Well, I think there’s a lot of truth to that. The one of the things that I have really learned over all of this research, and I did a lot of genealogical research for my own personal family, which is where, which is how I decided that I was going to approach this as they were my ancestors. And through that genealogical research, I took many classes and seminars on how to interpret what you were reading, how to interpret what was going on at the time, which basically meant, if you don’t understand what’s going on at the time, you can’t understand why your family did what they did. And with our blind ancestors, it’s the same thing. Some of them did hit rock bottom, in that they realized, for example, at the Iowa home for the blind, which was a short lived, it was supposed to be an industrial home where you could go to as an adult person who had gone blind, hopefully learn a trade find a place to live. The staff were paid. Like $20 a month, plus they had room and board where the blind folks were to pay two to $4 a month for their room and board work in the shop, which didn’t provide them with a lot of hours many times. And so the people who went to that home ended up owing money to the state by the time they were able to break free. And there were advertisements in the newspapers from Knoxville, Iowa, which is where the home was, and the counties where these people were going back to because at that time, the counties would say, well, we’re not responsible for this person because they came from your county, even though they’ve been in our county five years. That’s where their home is. And they don’t, they don’t fall underneath our charitable giving, or our plans for handing out any kind of pension or compensation. So there would be ads in the paper, you please send shoes or a shirt or money for train fare for this person to return to your county, or please donate money so that John Smith’s family can get them back from Knoxville on the train. There were blind people who I have researched, who would choose to go to jail and commit a crime a small crime usually to go to jail when it was cold, so that they didn’t have to go to the poor farm because poor farms were actually more dangerous in many areas than actually going to jail. Those are the types of people that made decisions that they were hitting rock bottom, but then you’ve got a lot of these others where things around them were four things around them were difficult. The farmers were experiencing crop loss, drought flooding, or they didn’t have the supplies. So there was a big flu epidemic or what have you. And they were in the same boat as the rest of the community. And they struggled to get out of that predicament just as much as the rest of the community, or at the same level. So it kind of depended on the mindset of the people the timing, whether or not they felt they hit rock bottom or not. If you got money from the city, you would have to petition to the city council or in some cases, the county, it was all in the public minutes, it was printed in the paper. And there would be a column about how much money was spent each month for individuals. And you would have so and so’s name and then it would be blind on the other side, so and so’s name and it would be old age, so and so’s name and another reason for them to collect money. And you had to go back time and time again. Three months maybe would be all you would get at a time. And you would look at the disparaging, you would look at the the monies that people were getting. And it would be kind of interesting, if a man who was a soldier in the Civil War, or the First World War would probably get more money, then a blind soldier would probably get a little more money, then the blind widow raising four kids. Why? I don’t know. I don’t know the thinking at the time. But once those things were put in the paper, your family was maybe shun that church, somebody would say when you went into this store, Oh, I see you’re not supporting your blind kid or your blind mother. Shame on you. So people chose to do anything rather than shame their family, or they would move away from their family to another community. And not have a lot to do with their family so that their family wouldn’t be embarrassed, but also so that they could get money from a county to find a small place to live.
Michael Hingson 17:27
What I’m curious just to change the subject a little bit, what did you do for your day job before you retired?
Peggy Chong 17:35
Well, I’ve kind of done it all. I wanted to be a librarian. And I worked after high school as a librarian before I was going to go to college. But then I got married and had a kid, you know, did the usual Mom Stuff it did daycare for a while, that kind of thing. When my daughter was in high school, I did customer service. And you’ll learn a lot of patience when working customer service. But I and I’ve had several positions. Over the years I’ve worked for blind industries and services of Maryland. And the National Federation of the Blind in their job opportunities for the blind program for several years, ran the Newsline program for the blind, the national program for several years. But for me, one of the things that is been a consistency in my life has been my involvement in the blind community. And, you know, do all the membership type things, raise money, and so on. But one of the things that was an accomplishment that I feel proud of is I was part of a group of people that established blind, blind incorporated blindness learning in new dimensions in Minnesota, and helped with a lot of the the foundation grants, finding the locations, finding staff, finding staff when we didn’t have any money to pay the staff, substituting for staff when we didn’t have staff who could perform the necessary jobs we needed to do. You know, one of the things that we did in building blinding Incorporated was we drew on the experiences of so many blind people, not just the ones that were you know, getting ready to retire, but the ones from that when they were in their 80s, who would tell us about what it was like in the 20s what they had to do, and how to travel because their information that they gave us, inspired us with so many ideas at how to be innovative. They had a lot of well, we didn’t have this so we improvise And because BLIND Incorporated had so little money, we need a lot of in prevent, improvising, and learned from their strategies and learn from their techniques and how they made a lot out of nothing. And it gave us a lot of techniques then also to pass on to other people we brought in those people was the student body built up, we brought in those people to give seminars, talk about what it was like, going through their struggles, losing their sight as adults in the 30s, in the 40s, when there was nothing, and hopefully, help them appreciate what they were doing at that time, not focus on how sad life was, how hard life was, but how they should be grateful this is all they have to go through and not having to learn new york point, and Braille and Moon type in order to read the books that they wanted, they only had to learn one alternative form of reading.
Michael Hingson 21:14
And we should probably explain that New York type, Moon type or New York point, Moon type, and so on are different forms of raised characters that into themselves have interesting origins. Although Braille is the the main technique that we use for reading,
Peggy Chong 21:33
there were different forms of Braille with the country. There was your basic ABC Braille, there was that and we called that grade one Braille, there was grade one and a half, which my mother used. And there was grade to Braille, which is what I learned, they have different short form words, different contractions. If you were reading grade one Braille, depending on where you lived, you had either a lot of access to grade one Braille, or you have little access to grade one Braille, what made the difference was where you were being taught that if you were taught at some of the schools for the blind, who had a lot of building, they had room for all the grade one Braille. The grade one and a half Braille did not take up as much space. And several printing houses did that some of the schools printed their own material, and they would do it grade one and a half. Then when there was this decision as to what would be the written language for the United States for the blind, decided that it would be that and it would be the American grade two Braille because there was English Braille, which I always found kind of fun to read, because it had different punctuation formats, and I get tied up in that New York point was something my mother had learned New York point. New York point was only two dots high, but four dots long. And had its own set of symbols were Braille is only three dots high, and two dots across. So it only has six dots, New York point had eight dots, Moon type, it always just looked to me like somebody dropped stuff on a page and then thermal form.
Michael Hingson 23:43
Yeah, Moon type is, I read once that moon type was kind of a hybrid form of printing characters created by someone who thought that these were different enough that they could be felt and read. But Moontide never caught on like Braille. And rightly so although I, I personally did get a couple of books and Moon type and had a little bit of fun learning to sort of read them but never could get to the point of reading quickly.
Peggy Chong 24:15
No, and that was the problem with the typist, you very few people ever got to read it quickly. And they thought that the Mon type would be a lot easier for older people to read, because the dots were too close together for especially people with arthritis and that kind of stuff as you get older. But it just not just really didn’t catch on and raised character printing. That was early form of a reading method for the Blind in this country. used a lot in the east coast where this early schools for the blind started but Again, it took up a lot of space. And just was not fast to read. And so when people started adopting Braille that was being taught in Europe, that made a big difference in how fast people could read. Now I find it find fun and interesting to note that the Ohio School for the Blind was, I believe, the very first state sponsored School for the Blind, all the rest were private schools or private public schools or something, but it wasn’t like we think of a State School for the Blind. Today, Ohio was was one of the first. And they taught several methods of reading. But what they spent a lot of time on was teaching the blind kids, young people to handwrite. And the reason they did that is because they told them, This is the business language of the United States. This is the business language of the sighted. And if you cannot compete in the sight of community, with the written word, you won’t compete in business. This is how you’re going to have to send out your bills. Now we’re talking 1848 1850 1860, and so on. And they would spend, I saw one schedule where they actually spent two to three hours a day, working on handwriting, and many of the graduates from the 50s. And 60s in the 70s were really competent hand writers, they could write out many of their diaries, their Ledger’s, their letters to their clients letters to their family, their friends, they corresponded with suppliers. And they did it all by hand with not with a secretary or interpreter, but by themselves. So then in the late 1870s, or so that they were going to spend more time on Braille and the alumni was all upset, because they said, Now wait a minute, these guys, they’re not going to be able to compete, you take away the written language of the United States from them, they’re not going to be able to compete equally with their sighted peers. And I thought, I found that very interesting to watch the changes that were going through different parts of the country. And of course, the invention of the typewriter, which is an intervention for blind people. People don’t always realize that once the typewriter came into vogue, well, then teaching typing than it was, this is what you do to compete in the sight of community. As you learn to type, you learn to communicate with the sighted through a typewriter. And that took the place then of teaching handwriting, handwriting, several schools did teach handwriting, but Ohio was probably the most successful at it. Many of the others just kind of dabbled in it, they could learn to write a little bit. But not how to track the lines, how to make it look like a really well formatted printed letter. Just mostly for notes and things like that. The other schools focused on the handwriting. You
Michael Hingson 28:29
mentioned something really interesting. Tell me a little bit more about the typewriter being invented for blind people.
Peggy Chong 28:35
The New York Times article that I learned all this from it and checked it out, came out probably in the late 80s, early 90s. And talked about this Countess, who was blind and she had a lover, evidently the count wasn’t as attentive as he should have been. And she wanted to communicate back and forth. With her lover, he would send her letters, and her ladies in waiting would read them. And then she would have one of her ladies in waiting, write the letters out and send them to him. Well, the ladies in waiting would, you know rat her out to the count. So they had to find other ways of communicating. And her lover put together this typewriter that resembles sort of what we use today and gave it to her as a gift. And she was then he taught her how to use it and she was then able to write to him privately so that they could sort of you know, keep in contact the letters from her. Her lover could have sort of their little secret messages in it then only she knew and so on. And so that’s how that all got started. The New York School for the Blind in Batavia adopted it really early on and had several of their Students working for typewriter companies. In fact, some of the high school students during the summer would work for a typewriter company traveling around many states going to the state fairs and demonstrating this new typewriter for the blind. And of course, it caught on in business, which was really great. Meaning that typewriters were more accessible all over the place for everyone caught on everywhere. And so it fascinates me now. And I always have to remind people that a typewriter was an invention for blind people. When people tell me Oh, it’s too difficult to learn to keyboard. I learned to type in kindergarten, that was what you had to do when you went to the to the site saving classes, you had to learn to type that was, if you didn’t know about type by the end of first grade boy, that you know, you spent a lot of time during the summer with your teacher. Well, I
Michael Hingson 30:55
like to type at home. But then I also took a typing course, in summer school one year between seventh and eighth grade I think it was. And I remember being in a class with a number of people we all had typewriters, of course, to the to work on. And people complain because the keys weren’t labeled, which is something that I hadn’t even thought about. You know, it didn’t bother me that the keys weren’t labeled, but they were complaining and the teacher had to explain what yeah, they’re not labeled, because you need to learn where they are. That’s what touch typing is all about. It is amazing what we complain about sometimes.
Peggy Chong 31:38
It truly is. The keys on the typewriter. When I took typing in ninth grade, it was mandatory to take typing in ninth grade. They were not labeled. And boy, everybody was really upset about that. But by that time I I knew touch typing so. So that class was great for me,
Michael Hingson 31:58
and to cross people up a lot more. My father had a typewriter that he brought back from Germany in World War Two. He said it actually came from one of Hitler’s offices. And he took it apart and packed it in boxes and send it home. And when he got home, he put it back together. What was interesting was it undetermined typewriter, the Z and the Y were reversed. Because Z was apparently a more common character. So that was a little bit hard to get used to once I learned to type and started using a regular typewriter remembering that on his typewriter, the Z and the Y were reversed. And it was a noisy clunker thing, but it sure worked well.
Peggy Chong 32:42
Make it really difficult writing a letter to somebody Mr. Saba rusty.
Michael Hingson 32:46
Peggy Chong 32:50
He was paged when I was at the airport the other day. But yeah, that’s it. And they were very, you fingers were very strong, because those old typewriters should push hard down. Oh,
Michael Hingson 33:01
you did? You did. I remember Occasionally, when we had tests in school, I got a portable typewriter. My parents bought us one. And I would carry it to school so that I could type answers. The tests were in Braille one specifically, test I recall was in eighth grade, you had to take a test here in California on the Constitution before you could graduate. And so the test was in Braille, it was transcribed by Mrs. Hershberger, who was our resource teacher. But they couldn’t have someone sitting next to me to have me dictate answers. Because we were in a classroom and there was no other space. Well, and of course, the logical thing was typed the answers. So I was in the classroom, and we the typewriter was pretty quiet, but I would type all of the answers and then turned it in. And it worked really well under the circumstances. It’s amazing how resourceful we can be.
Peggy Chong 34:01
My typewriter in class had to sit on foam. And mine was not a portable, mine was wheeled in on this cart. And it sat on a piece of foam, which deaden the sound some. Yeah. But still, it was, you know, I’m doing the typing in the class while the rest of the kids are all writing in their handwriting. My handwriting was really bad.
Michael Hingson 34:29
Nine as well. But I but I tell everyone, when I sign a document, well, the bank always accepts our checks, although now we don’t even do much with checks anymore. Well, I’m curious. How do you think attitudes toward blind people have changed throughout the years? I mean, you’ve obviously got a good perspective on what history was like for blind people. And you’ve talked about a number of people who have been able to accomplish that, but how have attitudes changed? aged either way,
Peggy Chong 35:02
you know it for blind women is changed dramatically in that blind women, the options for a blind woman if you didn’t marry was taking care of somebody if you had enough skill. Otherwise you were sort of you know that great aunt who lived in the backroom. You were taught handiwork so that you could always do the mending be useful at home. Blind women did a lot of fancy work, mending, because they weren’t straining their eyes. A blind woman could work a lot longer at doing the mending, because they didn’t need the light. After that, your opportunities were as a woman to become a teacher at a school for the blind. And that was about it. Music Teacher maybe teach piano at home. You didn’t go out, went blind women didn’t use a cane. But then sighted women didn’t go out if you were a sighted woman and you were out at after dark by yourself. Boy, you were gossiped about at church? That’s for doggone Sure. So what was the need for teaching a blind woman to travel, she wasn’t going to go out on her own anyway. And if she was, if there was another sighted woman who needed to go out will take the blind woman with you, she needs a little air anyway. And then you could go out and take care of business as well. So for blind women, the expectations have changed so much. Not just becoming a homemaker. Boy, if I can just marry this blind daughter, haha, that’d be crazy. But you could go to school, you didn’t have to just finish a lot of the girls who went to school, you look at the school for the blinds rosters, and you’ll see girls there for four or five, six years, then they’re going home to help cook on the family farm or take care of the sewing raise the younger children. They didn’t graduate at anywhere near the same rate as the blind men blind boys did. Then when they got to be more accepted as teachers and so on in the schools for the blind that some of them became public school teachers, especially in the frontier areas, where if you, you couldn’t get a lot of people to get out go out there. Some of the blind women especially through from Iowa, the blind college graduate, they were called the college for the blind at that time, because you went through 12 years of schooling, and most people only went through eight. So you know, the they call the School for the Blind in Iowa, the college for the blind. So the graduates from there, offered to go to North Dakota and South Dakota, and teach in some of the public schools and because until it became more populated, more things have opened up. Now, a blind woman has the same expectations can have the same aspirations as a blind man going to school, whatever the career they choose, and so on. For the Blind guys. You know, again, it kind of depended on where you grew up. If you came from a farming poor family, where you were land rich, but you know, the bank account didn’t have a lot of money. Everyone was expected to pull their weight and the families adapted and found a job for the blind person to do and they would do it well. Some of those blind people became excellent plow drivers with their horses. Fixed machinery, did the hauling in the gardens took care of the animals in the barns. Skills that would also trade in jobs that were in town or they could then hire out to a neighbor. The some communities didn’t expect a lot from their blind, relative, they’d send them to the schools for the blind and hoping that they’d find them something to do out east Perkins for many, many years. Music was the big thing at Perkins. They will be a music teacher. They will be orchestra director. They’ll work at a church as the music director. And many of them did find successful careers in that. If you were out in Montana, for example.
Peggy Chong 39:49
The blind kids that went to the Montana School for the Blind for the first 20 years. They helped literally build the school, the fences, the barns care for the animals raised the animals that would be Sunday’s meal, the vegetables, the, the, that were canned for the winter meals and so on. They made the furniture, they made the mattresses. So they took those skills, went back home and turn them into businesses, one of the graduates of the Montana School for the Blind. His parents had passed away, he lived with a sister, who was a teacher, but not that much older than he was, she didn’t know how to raise a blind kid send him to the Montana School for the Blind during the years where the school didn’t even have any heat, where they lived in two rooms of the nice building that had been built for them, but there was no heat in the building. So during that time, he learned to chop the firewood, he built the fence rails. He learned how to repair and build furniture. So when he decided to be a piano tuner, he took some classes in piano tuning, which was not a big class yet in Montana. But what he did learn was how to do the carpentry work for repairing the pianos. And he did that very well in the rescue picked up, which is kind of the opposite for some of the schools for the blind, because they focused on the piano tuning itself and telling the kids who were taking the piano tuning or the young men, well, you know, it’s really hard to do the carpentry work on it, you’ll never get the staining, right. So don’t even bother where he learned to do all of that at the Montana School for the Blind, and he ended up becoming the owner and manager of several movie theaters. And he would get these small movie theaters, and he would do all of the repair work and building up the stage. And he even learned electrical. And he would build up the movie theaters and go on and sell that one, buy another one and had a very, very, he had one of the nicest movie theaters in a medium sized town in Oregon, when he passed away.
Michael Hingson 42:04
Well, the the thing that really is fascinating is that you’re talking about a significant number of relatively speaking blind people who were successful in one way or another. But if you were to really contrast societal attitudes about what it means to be blind, then and now what what would you say? would you contrast them? Do you think that they’re significantly different today? Are they the same? Are they worse? You know, how have we really changed as a as a race toward blindness?
Peggy Chong 42:43
I think in many ways, we have stepped back as society from including others, we talk about inclusion a lot. And talk about being a part of an invite people who are different blind people, particularly we’re talking about now, but not always really including them as participants. Where I think my opinion is that back in 1880 1890, if a blind person proved themselves, they were accepted and expected to carry the weight. And they were more a part of the community, because they were far more isolated from other blind people than they are today. That doesn’t mean that all of the people were like that you still have the schools for the blind where you had the clusters. But today, the kids who grew up in the public school systems do not have the same support, family blind support family that the kids did back then I believe that there’s more contact with blind people or that you have the opportunity for more contact with blind people today than you did 110 110 years ago, 100 years ago. So it’s kind of, I think, not as easy as it was back then. Because there was a whole different mindset in the communities that everybody pulls their weight. And I use, for example, is the blind people that were in politics back then, that were serving on the city council’s as mayors as county commissioners, school boards. You don’t hear very much and I find very little about that today. But back then, well, for example, there was a gentleman in South Carolina, John Swearengen, who Born after the Civil War, but still, South Carolina was still in reconstruction. And there were public schools home taught so on, finally was sent to the school for the blind for a couple of years, wanted to go to college. The college didn’t want him until his uncle said, Well, if you’re not taking my nephew, then I’m not going to give you any more financial support. Since they were financially large contributors. The school gave him but says no, absolutely no accommodation for this kid. And that means even bothering other students to walk him to class. So he used a man’s walking stick a cane, to go to and from classes. So he graduates he wants to teach, the only place he can teach is the School for the Blind. His friends from college encouraged him when the State Superintendent of Education position came up, that he should run. Nobody took him seriously. But he won. Now he couldn’t teach in the state of South Carolina. But he oversaw all the public schools, including the colleges and the trade trade schools in South Carolina. And he did that for 20. Some years. But you see many of these people who wanted to make a difference in the community, a teacher from the School for the Blind in Iowa, he wanted sidewalks and a paved alley and ran for the City Council. And he got that for his area of the of the city, but also left a big imprint on the city because he got involved in bringing a new bank to the city and so on. You don’t see that kind of involvement. And is that because things are far bigger now. And blind people just don’t get into the the cog that runs the huge wheel, where the towns and communities far more oriented towards people because they were smaller back then? I think there’s some of that to be looked at as well. But we have not had a blind congressman, in our country since 1940. We have not had a blind US Senator since the 1930s. Why is that? We have five blind Congressman’s up until 1940. We had two blind US Senators before that. And yet we’ve had nothing since I look at how many blind men and women have served in state legislatures over the years.
Peggy Chong 47:40
And there was one point in time when we had well over 25 plus to 30 blind men and women serving in different states is different state legislatures. Now, there’s probably enough we could count on one hand, and we don’t have that kind of interaction with our our laws, our government bodies, anymore, that I think that makes a big difference as how we are seen, by our states, we are not part of fee process of creating new opportunities. We are part of the wanting our handout, I believe that we are looked at in many ways. More than we used to, even though we don’t have the begging that we use to the blind beggars all over the place. We sort of become the population that go to the state to get on this for this project and friends for that project. So it’s very different than it was I think it actually if you were a blind person who had gumption if you were a blind person who tried even though you would failed more than once and kept trying, I think you had the ability for more opportunities. And I say that also because in 1910, the US census was taken that year, and one of the focuses was to find out exactly how many blind people there were in the United States and what they were doing, because there was talk of creating pensions for the blind. And what would that cost the country? What would that cost the states if we were to do something like that? So if a surveyor was out, taking down all the information, and found a blind person, they got a little extra in their pay envelope. So the incentive was there to find the people, even if they didn’t self identify as a blind person, but to find those people and say yes, this person is blind enough where they don’t do things the same way as other people. In that step senses, more than 60% of the blind people found, were self supporting. That meant that they weren’t on any kind of charity, they weren’t being supported by a family member. They weren’t be supported by a county or a city. They weren’t in a industrial home for blind people. And what most of them were doing was farm labor. There were not as many piano tuners as a lot of people think they were farming was the biggest occupation. And now we have a close to 70% unemployment rate for blind people. And many of those people are on some kind of public assistance. And that’s just another indication that people were given an opportunity to do what they could do, and paid for it. Now, they didn’t have the same living conditions that we like to think about today, some of these people, especially the farm laborers, were living in the hayloft, or in an outbuilding on a farm, they might be living in the city running a broom shop out of somebody’s garage and living in that broom shop. Met in Minnesota, several of them had their own music stores, and they lived in the backroom of their music store that was their home and their business. So not the same living conditions, but they were self supporting. So I look at that. And I have to wonder if you were out there wanting to find a job if you were really trying, not in every community, but in many communities, were you given a chance to do that. And I think that we were given a chance back then, more often than not given a chance. Now people are worried about being sued. If they say the wrong thing, or if the person gets hurt, are they going to get an insurance claim that they don’t want, there wasn’t any of that back then. And maybe we had better chances if you were willing to get out there and, you know, work twice as hard to get half as far in many cases. But if you were willing to do that, you had an opportunity to get up there to get a job working in the back of someone’s store, delivering goods for a business, working as a furniture mover.
Peggy Chong 52:42
Whatever it was a women another story again, because times had not changed for women. But for men, they had a lot more opportunities and were self supporting, not needing to go to the church for funding that meeting to go to the county.
Michael Hingson 52:59
It’s interesting, though, that through all of that, today, we think of blind people may be tuning pianos and so on. But still, more often than not. We think of blind people begging back in the day, as it were. And we don’t hear a lot about all of the other kinds of things that blind people did. We we are molding, if you will, and attitude about blindness, which although there was begging certainly. And not only blind people begged but But still, there was a lot of begging, but we’re molding and trying to pit blind people into a pigeon hole that isn’t necessarily totally accurate.
Peggy Chong 53:49
One of the things that is difficult and tracking some of the blind people is that if they didn’t self identify as blind, and many did not. How do you know I mean, I have found relatives of the blind ancestors that I’m researching who had no idea that their relative was blind did made me prove it to them, that their relative was blind. And they were doing jobs like newspaper editors that they worked on the railroads. How can How could have Uncle John been blind if he had 1000 acres of land? And it’s because they if they couldn’t believe that a blind person could do it, they just talked about him as a person. Yeah. The articles in the newspapers if the blind person is doing something that is newsworthy. But if you bring in the blindness, it doesn’t sound like you’re really writing about the person. They didn’t bring in the blindness and some papers did have a policy not to talk about a person’s what we would call today a disability, but they would call it many other other things. And so it would be hard to track some of them that way, especially when you’ve got somebody who’s got a common link name. You know, for example, I took genealogy classes on how to determine whether the Johann Schmidt, and I’ve got a few of them in my family is the Johann Schmidt you’re looking for, and it was kind of fun to learn how to do that, and how to track and find the right person. And make sure you got all the right kids names, or who did that if we lived next door to them, when you knew they that that was your relative of the person you were targeting. So when I start to look at these blind people and look at who they lived with, who their neighbors were, did they follow them along what was their kids names, so that you can track them back when they are not identified as a blind person, especially when they went blind later in life, because people tried to hide that. They didn’t want people to know they were having difficulty. They didn’t want to burden others with their problems. They just kept on working. They just kept on running the farm. They just kept on delivering the milk, they just kept on doing what needed to be done.
Michael Hingson 56:33
I’m curious. So as a person who has grown up blind and also very active in the National Federation of the Blind, which is you and I know is the largest organization of blind people in the United States, and it’s a very active social action organization. The Federation was started by Dr. Jacobus, Tim Brooke. But Dr. Temper Ik had his beginnings at the California School for the Blind. Tell me about Newell Perry. And if you know much about Dr. Perry, who was a mathematician who was blind, and who taught at the school and taught Dr. timbre.
Peggy Chong 57:13
Neil Perry is a really fascinating guy, because he taught at the school for the blind, because he felt it was important to teach blind, blind kids, he could have taught other places. Especially he could have taught mathematics as a professor. It would have been hard for him not because of the teaching aspect, but because of be getting into the schools and being accepted as a blind mathematician. But one of the things he did for a lot of kids and we’re talking, you know, back in the 1920s. Kids came to the Colorado School of the Colorado I’m sorry, the California School for the Blind from a lot of different states. And dual Perry taught them how to think he taught them how to do math in their heads. He taught them how to think out of the box. And what he did was he were he there was a group of young men in California known as his Paris boys. But he taught a lot of people that went on to other states, for example, a young man went back to Hawaii in he there was no School for the Blind in Hawaii when his parents who were missionaries had this blind child and wanted an education for their blind child. So they sent him California, he came back and went to the University of Hawaii there and that young man didn’t quite always get what Perry was trying to teach him. His became a little hard nosed for a while, but he went back to California and did understand later on about I you know, you’ve got to, you got to get out there. You’ve got to keep moving. Neil Perry, used a cane. Some of the earlier people who used a cane before what we consider the birth of the white cane in this country. And October is white cane awareness month, April, October 15 was white cane Awareness Day. And but no Perry taught the kids to move, get out there to run to play to climb the trees to play on the play equipment to play ball to run basis and taught them to move. And because sometimes, the young man I’m talking about in a why because Perry didn’t always do that on the school grounds. It was his home. Perry lived there, taught there, went to school there. He considered at home and didn’t always carry his cane but He did when He went out and his students followed his his example because he was there example. Yes, he was teaching at the school for the blind, but they knew he could do other things. And he was out in the community, advocating for other people to get the college. He was advocating for his students to get into colleges across Colorado, California, and other states, but primarily California. And he did it by example. So that the universities saw, hey, this guy, yeah, he could probably be a professor here. Yeah, well let it one of his his students and so on. He was, by example, the teacher who encouraged self confidence, who encouraged a philosophy of getting out there and trying exerting yourself taking chances falling down. The kids on the playground, when they were at the school for the blind, they fell down, they got hurt, they bumped stuff. And they learned to avoid it. They learned how to listen, they learned how to judge distance by their hearing. They learned many, many skills by playing those games, that unfortunately, that young man from Hawaii took a long time to learn. But that kind of a teacher doesn’t just teach you how to do your math, how to think in your head, how to solve problems, for financial, for constructing a cabinet or carpentry, but how to think out of the box for your life. His students became travelling insurance men, they became state senators, they became attorneys, they became teachers, they became bike repairman, they became electricians. Later on, they became musicians. And not just playing in the clubs, although some of them did a really good job of doing that. But they, they became radio musicians who made records who had a following who, because of their music, were able to buy nice houses and send their kids to college. And some of his students became novelists. They didn’t just go home and sit, they didn’t just take a job at the sheltered shop, they didn’t just become a piano tuner, although some of them who did that were very successful. But they did their job, and were a part of their community. And so that I think, when Jacobus 10, Brooke found founded the Federation, that was a spirit that he brought with, he brought that spirit that we need to be a part of the community. And the white cane law, one of the first things it says is that it encourages blind people. The model white cane law that he established with others in 1966 says that blind people are encouraged to be an active part in the community. And I think that is a real major part of the philosophy of the National Federation of the Blind, is that we need to be out in the community we need to be doing for others, because when we’re doing for others we’re doing for ourselves, we are feeling better about ourselves, we gain more confidence, more assured. And when you are more assured, you look more assured, you look like somebody that should be respected, that should be listened to not just somebody that should be cared for. And that was the philosophy of the Federation in 1940, is that we don’t want a handout we want a hand up.
Michael Hingson 1:03:49
It’s always interesting. It’s interesting that regular listeners of this podcast, know something about Dr. Tim Brooke because one of our episodes was based on and we just played Dr. Tim Brooks 1956 banquet speech within the grace of God, which has always been one of my favorite speeches. And to learn a little bit more about him and to see where he came from, because he went through his own challenges at UC Berkeley, although he got a bachelor’s degree, they would let him go on into dealing with the law, which is what his interest was. And he had to get around that.
Peggy Chong 1:04:34
At Berkeley was a big hub for many blind students from the 20s on up that attracted blind students and and Newell Perry had a lot to do with that. Yeah. And Berkeley was far more open to blind students than any other college in California at the time.
Michael Hingson 1:04:56
Oh, yes, and NSA It’s just so sad in so many ways that attitudes and ideas about blindness haven’t progressed and in some ways have really slipped. Two more questions, and then we’ll have to wrap up, we’ve captured you enough for today. But I’d love to do this again and, and continue. But what’s the most interesting person in your mind that you know about from from a historical standpoint, from the standpoint of a person who is blind? What’s the most fascinating story that you tell?
Peggy Chong 1:05:38
Wow, you know, a lot of times that just depends on the person I’m researching. Because I, I find, I can go through a lot of names. And you have, we have left in many ways, a very small footprint, as blind people. And in many ways, we’ve left some really big shoes to fill. And I’ll go through, you know, 150 200 names before I’ll find somebody I can write a short story on. But like I said, Thomas, David Shaw, he was my first blind ancestor, if you will. And I do find him very fascinating because he reinvented himself all the time, and researching him. different branches of his family, know very different stories that don’t always fit.
Michael Hingson 1:06:39
Isn’t that interesting,
Peggy Chong 1:06:41
and I just loved him because he was a man who he got married, he had this law firm. Some people would probably call him an ambulance chaser. It was amazing how he had a lot of the same witnesses that witnessed a lot of this different accidents that happened around the city of Minneapolis. He made a lot of money as the sighted guy. And then when he went blind, they spent almost all of their money had to move into a small apartment. So when he was stony broke, that’s when he decided to get into politics. And he didn’t get into the blindness stuff until he had been there about 678 years when he got a police dog, before runner of the police dogs that were trained for seeing I. But he got one of the first police dogs that was trained for the First World War veterans that was brought over by a friend. And Lux was his name. Lux had quite a following. He did dog commercials and all kinds of stuff. But Lux couldn’t ride in the train car, and he was going back and forth to DC on the train all the time. And Lux couldn’t go with him unless he went into the baggage car. And so he tried to get an exemption for locks. But he thought, you know, I can’t be the only blind guy who’s got a problem with this dog guides were not what we think of as dog guides today. But blind people did travel with dogs, that they had trained themselves. As a blind man, he found that every place he went, he had to sort of educate people and didn’t understand why some people just have no concept about needing a reader getting around, he got a page to help him then he gets involved with the blind folks. And he sees no reason why there shouldn’t be a National Rehabilitation Program for the blind, that there should be a program for all blind people not just the blind in war veterans, because we had a program for several years after the First World War in Maryland. Evergreen, it was called that did a really great job and it was about a two year program that after about six years that program went away pretty much and that was the the floorplan that they were using for this new rehabilitation program. Now he found a lot of blind guys that were really interested in and this was some of the letters I was reading back many years ago and then when I went Who is this blind guy but he found that the agencies for the blind and the American Foundation for the Blind so well you know, gee Mr. shawls really nice guy but He just doesn’t understand blindness. Now, you didn’t tell that to Thomas shawls face, by the way, because he told you what, four. And you walked away going? I’m sorry, sir. Yes, sir. But they worked around him. And I found that really rather sad that they kind of said, well, you know, he just doesn’t have the education and blindness that we do. We have these studies, and not all blind people can be trained. And so let’s, let’s look at it from a different perspective, and delayed, in many ways, 10 years legislation for blind people. But Shaw also decided, you know, if you guys are blind guys are going to fight all the time, I’ve got better fish to fry. And so after a couple of years, he moved on, and really didn’t pay much more than lip service to blind people. After that point. He was nominated for an award, back in the 30s, of which I still am hoping to get the information for, but he didn’t get it. And the reason according to one, what one letter that I found, is that, well, the American Foundation for the Blind respects Mr. shawls opinions and all but it really wasn’t appropriate at that time, and probably killed off him receiving this national award in 1933.
Peggy Chong 1:11:35
But he still, even though he didn’t give a lot of lip service to the legislation, he still was out there fighting for what he truly believed. And, you know, when he believes something in his heart, he went whole hog at it. He didn’t like the New Deal. But he was very supportive some of Roosevelt’s other programs, and he would fight vehemently against the New Deal. And then he’d be right out there, supporting the president of the opposite party. On the other platforms that he did agree with them on, he did a lot of public speaking, a lot of traveling. And he believed that the best way for him to be a good servant to the state of Minnesota, was to get out there and meet everybody. And he did that. And so he’s traveling all over rural Minnesota, sometimes he would have his boys in the Summer Go with him. And talking about politics, not about blindness. But about what was important to people, what was the problems they had on the farm, what was the problem they were having in small towns, and he would do these videos, like he loved to shoot. And he still continued to do that, after he lost his sight. And what they did is they set up in the backyard of his house, this big Gong, and his sons would take this big stick with the, you know, pat it in and hit the gong. And his dad would shoot up the gown, the the boys would get the gong, and they would shoot up the gong. And he hit that gong, right the center many times. I was watching that with someone who said those boys afraid that, you know, the dads are gonna shoot him as well, you know, William Tell son survive and heal and nap on his head. So, but he showed himself as a part of the farmers as a part of those small town guys who were going hunting he showed them, he does the same things. He understands them at their level. And I admired that, that he could be that kind of a person, I’m not sure he would have been a lawyer I would have wanted from, you know, my attorney. But on the other hand, I admired him for being someone who recognized what was going on with people. And he took the chance who stood up and said, This is what I believe. This is what I’m going to fight for. And he was the one that stood at the front of the line, not the one that was back in the office. But if there was frontline issues. He was out there at the demonstrations. He was out there at the rallies. He was out there to be seen as a supporter.
Michael Hingson 1:14:29
You know, we call this the unstoppable mindset because that’s what it is. People can be unstoppable. If they truly emotionally adopt a mindset that says we can do what we choose, we can do what we what we feel in our heart is the right thing to do. And talking about Mr. Shaw, you’re certainly demonstrating that
Peggy Chong 1:14:58
some of these people want I read some of the articles where they’re interviewed. And the interviewer will say, Well, what made you think that a blind person could ride a bicycle to their piano tuning job? So what made you think that a blind person could build furnitures and open them music store? And many times they say, well, nobody told me I couldn’t.
Michael Hingson 1:15:22
Yeah, exactly right. And that’s something that I’ve experienced, and I’m sure you’ve experienced Why, what makes you think you could do that? Well, why not? Last question for today. And like I said, I would love to continue this in the future. But as, as we live in our world today, what’s the thing that you’re most concerned about, or most afraid of?
Peggy Chong 1:15:51
The education of the literacy of people who are blind is really very disturbing. And the technology that is separating us from the sighted world, you know, I see these young kids, smart kids. And they are only being taught how to use a, an expensive Braille display, not a computer. They’re taught how to use expensive equipment for the blind, that the schools purchase, which they don’t have access to in the summer. And they do really great on them. But they can’t write or format, a decent Word file, to send out a letter of inquiry for a job, or to volunteer at a summer camp as a teenager. Many of them are really far behind. They’re graduating from college, and they can’t write a resume. It’s to me, that is something that blind people fought very hard for is the ability to get a decent education, to read and write. And we have made it’s I think, in some ways, so specialized, that we forgotten that the point is to teach people to be literate, and that we aren’t expecting literacy from our young people. They don’t have their hands on a book. There’s an I think that sighted people will agree with this, too, is that there’s something about reading a holding the book in your hand. Yep, it’s great to read stuff on the computer. And people really love their necks and everything. But every once in a while, you just want to hold that book in your hand, there’s something different about that. But these kids don’t have that they don’t, they don’t have an opportunity to read a braille book that much. And many of them don’t even get to
Michael Hingson 1:18:05
learn to read Braille.
Peggy Chong 1:18:07
No. And that computer’s gonna do it all for you. Yeah, and the computer breaks down. And they are stuck there, braille display goes out, it takes three months for it to be repaired, and they don’t have a replacement. And they fall farther and farther behind. And they are not taught how to use a human reader. The skills are just not there. And when I think of these kids, who went to the School for the Blind, and not kids, because they would take kids like they took people like 20, up to 25 years old, some of the schools for the blind. And within the first semester, you had to learn two to three different reading formats in order to compete for your grade that year. And yet, we are not teaching blind kids how to read and write in braille effectively or efficiently, even after six years in school.
Michael Hingson 1:19:03
Yeah. Well, as I said, I’d love to continue this and I hope that you will come back. I love to talk. Oh, good. Well, then we’ll we’re gonna do this again. But how can people learn about you? How can they reach out to you?
Peggy Chong 1:19:19
I have a lot of things going on. I have a website. It’s www the blind history lady.com that’s all one word. The blind history lady. Somebody was called me as a joke. The blind history lady when I was talking about some stuff I knew and they and you know, when it came time in about 2013 2014 to decide what I was going to do as I just picked that up, stuck it stuck. I have you can contact me by my email address, which is the blind history firstname.lastname@example.org I have a monthly email that I send to my my subscribers and You don’t have to pay me any money to do that. That’s fine. I will put you on my email list and tell you a story. Like, I’ve got one that I’m working on right now about the Negro magazine. Did you know about the Negro magazine in Braille? No. Well, you’ll have to catch up on my one of my stories early next year about the Negro magazine on the list you are. So get on my email list. I do public speaking, you can find my rates on my website. I’d be glad to talk to you about that about blind history. And I have a book that has just come out, you get it on Amazon. It’s about Don Mahoney television star, a blind guy who hid his blindness for 10 years from the studios in Texas, because they he was afraid his show would be canceled his kitty show. By the time he had to come out as a blind person, if you will. He had a following. There was no way they would, they were gonna cancel him. He was a money maker. And he and I tell how he did that, how he just was him how he was done Mahoney, and how he grew up in a family of blind people that they just didn’t realize they were really blind. Yeah, they didn’t see so good. But you know, kind of like my grandfather, he wasn’t blind anymore. He just didn’t see Yeah. Using that b word, but you can contact me that way. Order my book online, at Amazon, or your other Barnes and Noble wherever.
Michael Hingson 1:21:40
And we will put all this up on our web page, and it will be on the podcast page. And I hope people will give us a five star rating. This has been a fascinating interview, but it’s been a fascinating hour to spend with you. And Peggy Chong, I certainly want to do this again, and we will do it soon. That sounds great. You certainly are as unstoppable as anybody else.
Peggy Chong 1:22:08
Someday I’m gonna be rich and famous because of this. There may go, I might be 194. But I will be rich and famous because of all of this.
Michael Hingson 1:22:18
Well, and I hope we help to make that happen.
Peggy Chong 1:22:22
Michael Hingson 1:22:22
Thank you very much for being with us on the unstoppable mindset podcast where inclusion, diversity and the unexpected meet.
Michael Hingson 1:22:35
You have been listening to the Unstoppable Mindset podcast. Thanks for dropping by. I hope that you’ll join us again next week, and in future weeks for upcoming episodes. To subscribe to our podcast and to learn about upcoming episodes, please visit www dot Michael hingson.com slash podcast. Michael Hingson is spelled m i c h a e l h i n g s o n. While you’re on the site., please use the form there to recommend people who we ought to interview in upcoming editions of the show. And also, we ask you and urge you to invite your friends to join us in the future. If you know of any one or any organization needing a speaker for an event, please email me at speaker at Michael hingson.com. I appreciate it very much. To learn more about the concept of blinded by fear, please visit www dot Michael hingson.com forward slash blinded by fear and while you’re there, feel free to pick up a copy of my free eBook entitled blinded by fear. The unstoppable mindset podcast is provided by access cast an initiative of accessiBe and is sponsored by accessiBe. Please visit www.accessibe.com. accessiBe is spelled a c c e s s i b e. There you can learn all about how you can make your website inclusive for all persons with disabilities and how you can help make the internet fully inclusive by 2025. Thanks again for listening. Please come back and visit us again next week.