The Museum committee and staff have developed plans for future exhibitions, but we are always open to your ideas. Feel free to approach anyone on the Museum Committee to share your vision of an exhibition or new ways to reach an audience. The Office of the Provost supports the National Deaf Life Museum.

Mission Statement

The National Deaf Life Museum at Gallaudet University promotes and interprets the rich and complex deaf experience through exhibits and programming on campus and online.

Vision Statement

  • Advance the educational mission of Gallaudet University by providing opportunities for shared research and academic collaboration.
  • Exhibit artifacts and ideas that inform, inspire, and challenge common understandings of deaf life from cultural, linguistic, and sensory perspectives.
  • Create public programming serving the campus, the neighborhood surrounding Gallaudet University, diverse Washington, DC constituencies, and local, national, and international audiences.
  • Provide national leadership on public presentations of deaf history and contemporary life of the deaf community.

Role of the Museum

A museum provides an unparalleled venue for sharing cultural information, history, and stories through the artifacts it exhibits, the films it screens, the artwork it displays, and the personal experiences it shares.

The National Deaf Life Museum will present an evolving cultural community’s heritage and trace the University’s historic roots and the community. By promoting the open exchange of ideas about what it means to be deaf – and conversely, what it means to be heard – with the local, national, and international communities, the museum will inspire examination of community identities. As a place of historic, linguistic, and cultural scholarship, the museum will also serve the University and its visitors as an accessible resource on deaf life and artistic expression.

Re-Naming Gallaudet Museum

Hello! I'm Meredith Peruzzi, the director and curator for the Gallaudet University Museum. Maybe you've heard via Facebook and Twitter that the Gallaudet museum is thinking of changing its name. This is true! We are currently working on a new name for a few reasons....

National Deaf Life Museum

Resource Type: History

Notes from the Museum Director and Curator Emerita

The story of our country's deaf and hard of hearing cultural community is an important part of the larger narrative that is United States history. Since Gallaudet University was founded in 1864 by an act of Congress, the University has served as the unofficial conservator...

National Deaf Life Museum

Resource Type: Program Information

Honorary Chairs of National Deaf Life Museum

Dr. Jack R. Gannon and Mrs. Rosalyn Lee Gannon are the Honorary Chairs of the National Deaf Life Museum. This is their story: Dr. Jack R. Gannon and Ms. Rosalyn Lee Gannon. Photo courtesy of Christine Gannon, 2013. During 1985-1986, when Dr. Gannon was Director...

National Deaf Life Museum

Resource Type: Program Information

Gallaudet Museum in 1985

Along with his wife, Dr. Jack R. Gannon, Rosalyn Lee Gannon, and his friends worked tirelessly to establish the Gallaudet Museum in 1985, which was located in the Chapel Hall. It was fully operated by volunteers and supported through donations. The Museum showcased many artifacts,...

National Deaf Life Museum

Resource Type: History

Museum Citations and References

The following is a collection of significant citations and references pertaining to the Museum's permanent exhibition, Gallaudet at 150 and Beyond, and other Museum materials. Like most historical research, the Museum's research is an ongoing process. This list is intended to provide a guide to...

National Deaf Life Museum

Resource Type: Learning Materials

Contact Us

National Deaf Life Museum

Chapel Hall

(202) 250-2235

** By Appointment Only **

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