On April 5, 1887, Helen Keller learned that there was meaning in the word Anne Sullivan signed to her using the manual alphabet at the water pump in Tuscumbia, Alabama. Keller remembered the day: "As the cool stream gushed over one hand she spelled into the other the word water, first slowly, then rapidly. I stood still, my whole attention fixed upon the motion of her fingers. Suddenly I felt a misty consciousness as something is forgotten - a thrill of returning thought: and somehow the mystery of language was revealed to me. I knew then that "w-a-t-e-r" meant the wonderful cool something that was flowing over my hand. That living word awakened my soul, gave it light, hope, the joy set it free!"
Statue of the moment Anne Sullivan Signed "water" into Helen Keller's hand.