History of the Lehigh Association of the Deaf

The Lehigh Association of the Deaf is the second oldest deaf
association in Pennsylvania today.  Many years ago it had been
the practice of a small group of deaf people to meet each other in
the old pool room on Hamilton Street between Seventh and Eight
Streets in Allentown, PA, where they brought bags of peanuts to
eat while they communicated with each other.  This resulted in
piles of peanuts shells on the pool room floor and the proprietor
called the police which put a stop to their meetings in the old

From there they went down the street to the old YMCA building
which was located on the square of which our official emblem is
designed.  The meetings of this location took place regularly on
Friday evenings.  One evening they got into a discussion about
the problems of the deaf being pushed around and having no
place to go on Saturday evenings.  In these days there was an
occasional social for the deaf at a Church, but it usually closed at
an early hour and the evening remained long.  They would hang
around a corner under the street lamppost, talked the night away.

On March 28, 1925.   The first minute began with:
“The boys (14 in all) do hereby favor of having a club.  
The 14 deaf boys agreed to pay $1.00 to join and agreed to
pay 25 cents a week due.  They voted to name the club –
“Silent Men’s Club”, which was changed in next month’s
meeting – to call their club the  “Allentown Silent Club.”
Dedicated to these 14 men
who favored to have a club
Without these men, Lehigh Association of the Deaf
would have not existed.

William Bahl               Lewis Kleibscheidel
Harold Berger            Harrison Litzenberger
Mark Dreisbach             Stewart McCormick
Albert Dries                  Howard Newhard
Thomas J. Eroh               Ernest Sechler
Samuel Frickert               R.B VanEtten
Charles J. Handwerk        Frederick Wolfe