Louisiana State School for the Blind
The State school for the deaf was established at Baton Rouge in 1852, in which in 1856 a department for the blind was created. In 1871 a separate institution for the blind was set up, to be reunited with that for the deaf in 1888, and finally made a separate school in 1898. The Louisiana State School for the Blind is in the hands of a board of seven trustees, including the Governor and the State superintendent of public instruction, with supervision by the State board of charities and corrections. A day school was opened in New Orleans in 1917, under the direction of the city.
An Act to reorganize, establish and maintain the Institution for the Blind, to be known as the "Louisiana Institute for the Blind;" to locate same at Baton Rouge: to provide for the organization and government thereof; to provide for the appointment of a Board of Trustees; to confer corporate powers upon said board; to define its powers and duties and to provide for the expenses of the members ; to define the class of persons to be admitted in the Institution and privileges they shall receive.
[Establishment of the Institution.}
Section 1. Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Louisiana, That there shall be established and maintained, in the town of Baton Rouge an institution for the education of the blind, to be known as the '' Louisiana Institute for the Blind.''
[Appointment of Board of Trustees—Governor Ex-officio President.]
Sec. 2. Be it further enacted, etc., That the Governor shall appoint, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, seven resident citizens of the State, who together with the Governor, (who shall be exofficio President of the Board) shall constitute and be known as the Board of Trustees of the Louisiana Institute for the Blind. At the first appointment of the Board under this act two of the members shall be appointed for two years, two for three years and three for four years, and thereafter appointments shall be made for the terms of four years. R. S. 1115—Act 145, 1898
[Board Constituted a Body Politic, etc.]
Sec. 3. Be it further enacted, etc., That the Board of Trustees is hereby declared and constituted a body politic corporate, and shall have full power to sue and be sued, to make contracts, and acquire and hold, by purchase or donation any real or personal property necessary for the use or for the benefit of said institution.
[Domicile of Board.]
Sec. 4. Be it further enacted, etc., That the domicile of the Board of Trustees shall be at Baton Rouge, and all process shall be served on the Vice-President at the office of the Board.
[Meetings of Board.]
Sec. 5. Be it further enacted, etc., That the Board of Trustees shall meet once every four months, and oftener if they deem it expedient; and four members shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. They shall make all needful rules and regulations for the management of the institution and fowthe admission therein. They shall keep a correct joiirnal of their proceedings and report to the General Assembly, during the first week of each regular session, the affairs and condition of the institiition.
[Objects of the Institution.]
Sec. 6. Be it further enacted, etc., That they shall receive, instruct and support in the Institution all persons blind, or of such defective vision as not to be able to acquire an education in the ordinary schools, between the ages of seven and twenty-two years, of sound mind and proper health of body, and residents of the State. Such persons shall receive instructions and be provided with board, lodging, medicine and medical attendance at the expense of the institution and if in such indigent circumstances as to render it necessary, shall also be furnished with clothing and traveling expenses to and from the Institution upon a certificate to that effect from the President of the Police Jury of the parish, or the mayor of the city, or town, in which they reside.
[How Long Pupils May Remain in Institution.]
Sec. 7. Be it further enacted, etc.. That persons admitted as pupils under fourteen years of age, may continue in the institution ten years, if over fourteen and under seventeen years of age, they may continue eight years; and if over seventeen years of age, they may continue five years; provided the Board may in any case extend the term two years.
[Officers Which Board Shall Elect.] .
Sec. 8. Be it further enacted, etc.. That the first meeting of the Board of Trustees shall be held at such time as the Governor may •direct, and at such meeting they shall elect a Vice-President, they shall elect a Treasurer, a Superintendent and such other officers as may be necessary for the proper organization and management of the Institution, define their duties and fix their salaries.E. 8. 1115—Act 145, 1898
[Duties of Vice-President,]
Sec. 9. Be it further enacted, etc., That the Vice-President shall preside over the meetings of the Board during the absence of the President, and shall exercise a general supervision of the affairs of the Institution.
[Treasurer, Bond, Duties.]
Sec. 10. Be it further enacted, etc., That the Treasurer shall give bond in such sums as the Board of Trustees may determine, with security to be approved by the Vice-President. He shall be custodian of the funds of the Institution. He shall receive from the State Treasurer the monies appropriated by the State for the support of the Institution upon his warrant* countersigned by the Governor. He shall make payments upon the order of the Superintendent of the Institute countersigned by the Vice-President of the Board.
[Trustees to be Paid Expenses.]
Sec. 11. Be it further enacted, etc., That the members of the Board of Trustees shall be paid their expenses incurred in attending the meetings of the Board out of the funds of the Institute.
[What Institution Shall Provide.]
Sec. 12. Be it further enacted,etc.,That the Institution shall provide all the requisite facilities for acquiring a good literary education; and an industrial department in which instructons shall be given in such trades as may be best suited to render the pupils self-sustaining citizens.
[When Board Shall Assume Control.]
Sec. 13. Be it further enacted, etc., That upon the appointment of the Board of Trustees herein provided for the organization of the Institute for the Blind, at Baton Rouge, under existing laws shall cease and determine, and the new Board shall assume custody, management and control thereof.
[When Act Takes Effect.]
Sec. 14. Be it further enacted, etc., That this act shall take effect from and after its passage.
See Act 62, 1900, p. 109, for the admission of two white Cuban children. See Act 196, 1902, printed at page 581.
B. S. 1115—Act 166, 1898
The Louisiana Institution for the Blind was established in 1852 when a bill was introduced in the legislature providing for the care of the deaf, dumb and blind. The same year the work of educating these unfortunates was begun in New Orleans. Substantial buildings were not completed until 1858, and in the meantime, as before, the helpless persons were provided for in other benevolent institutions. Little was done during the war, but in 1871 the institution was revived and provided with buildings at Baton Rouge, having been driven from its home by the Seminary of Learning. In 1882 the new buildings were occupied and additions were made in 1888, since which time the establishment has been much more efficient. The Institution for the Deaf and Dumb was founded in 1852 with an appropriation of twenty-five thousand dollars and located at Baton Rouge. It opened in 1853 and prospered until the Civil war and was then occupied by soldiers. In 1869, in common with the Institution for the Blind, it lost its buildings to the Seminary of Learning, whereupon the trustees leased, other buildings and continued the good work. It is distinctively an educational institution and not an asylum, having full lines of instruction and suitable equipment. In 1886, when the State University moved to the old United States barracks, the Deaf and Dumb Institution returned to its old buildings.
[Source: "THE BLIND; THEIR CONDITION AND THE WORK BEING DONE FOR THEM IN THE UNITED STATES; 1919 submitted by Tina Easley: laws of Louisiana 1904]
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