Today’s educators and speech-language pathologists may not see the relevance in studying Mabel Farrington Gifford. After all, her research was concerned mainly with speech, which is much different from the interest of current speech-language pathologists.Today’s clinicians are concerned with much more than phonation and articulation, but also issues like language, deformities and swallowing disorders. While the field has evolved since the early twentieth century, it is important to understand the founding principals and ideologies.
As the visionary for both the public school speech therapy program and the formal teacher certification program, Gifford made a significant impact on the history of education in California. Her ideas about speech therapy in public schools propelled the services that California would offer students with communicative disorders.
This web site is archival in nature to demonstrate the importance of Mabel Farrington Gifford in the field of Speech-Language Pathology. This site will be useful to both historians and educators interested in disabilities history and the history of education, but it will also be useful to speech-language pathologists who have an interest in the early stages of their profession in California. Currently, there are no digital archives that have collected Mabel Farrington Gifford’s work in combination with other sources that highlight her.