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Ann E. Leak Photograph

An inventory of the collection at Syracuse University

Overview of the Collection

Creator: Leak, Ann E.
Title: Ann E. Leak Photograph
Inclusive Dates: 1871
Quantity: 1 folder (SC)
Abstract: Photograph of Ann Leak, "Born Without Arms," with a sample of her toe writing on reverse
Language: English
Repository: Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries
222 Waverly Avenue
Syracuse, NY 13244-2010

Biographical History

Ann E. Leak (1839-?) was an American woman born without arms. Despite this handicap she became remarkably skilled and proficient in using her toes and feet, even able to teach courses in braiding hair. Later, to support herself and her family, she traveled the eastern part of the United States exhibiting her skills.

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Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Ann E. Leak Photograph consists of one carte-de-visite with a photograph of Leak on the front, seated on a table with a tea set. On the back is inscribed, presumably in Leak's own writing:

This is a specimen of toe writing.
Ann E. Leak
Born without arms.
Zebulon Pike Co.
Age 29 yrs.
Aug, 7, 1871.

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Access Restrictions

The majority of our archival and manuscript collections are housed offsite and require advanced notice for retrieval. Researchers are encouraged to contact us in advance concerning the collection material they wish to access for their research.

Use Restrictions

Written permission must be obtained from SCRC and all relevant rights holders before publishing quotations, excerpts or images from any materials in this collection.

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Subject Headings


Leak, Ann E.


Abnormalities, Human -- Photographs.
Cabinet photographs.
Portrait photography.

Genres and Forms

Albumen prints.

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Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Ann E. Leak Photograph,
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Acquisition Information

Purchase, 2011.

Finding Aid Information

Created by: MRC
Date: 30 Sep 2011
Revision history:

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SC 667 Ann E. Leak, inscribed and signed by Leak 1871

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