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ID 10253

Congenital cataract pedigree (1)

Congenital cataract pedigree (1)
Description:
This pedigree and accompanying narrative describe a family with 23 cases ofcongenital cataract in four generation. The case was offered "as an argument against the marriage of persons suffering from this form of defective vision, the commonest of all transmissible blind afflictions."
Transcript:
258. Jun 15 1921 11-1-12 Bingham The study of the following family in which there have been twenty-two cases of congenital cataract in four generations, is offered as a contribution to the subject of hereditary blindness and as an argument against the marriage of persons suffering from this form of defective vision, the commonest of all transmissible blind afflictions. This family is of especial interest as in two instances a person of normal vision mates with another sighted person and has seeing children; afterwards mating with one afflicted with congenital cataract, blind offspring are produced. It has not been possible to get at the origin of the trouble. The older members of the family while considering it a curse from God as direct punishment for the sin of an erring sister, apparently did not regard it as a reason for refraining from marriage, as the accompanying chart shows. The first case is said to have been born deaf and dumb and "like an animal" in addition to being blind. The father was an alcoholic and the mother, who became pregnant about 6 months before marriage, was perfectly moral thereafter and had a hard, unhappy life due to the intemperance of her husband and estrangement of her family. Three of her ten children were blind and another was alcoholic. Of the three blind children the male, who was also deaf and dumb never married, but the two females did: the first having three blind children out of a family of six: the second having only blind children, seven in all. By a previous marriage, the husband of the second sister had seven children all with good vision. We have, then, in this second generation of blindness, ten cases of congenital cataract, seven of which have been taught in special schools for the blind for periods varying from seven to thirteen and a half years. The other three cases died in infancy.
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