Finding collections relating to d/Deaf, disabled and neurodiverse people

One of the aims of our project is to make collections relating to d/Deaf, disabled and neurodivergent people more visible – and to share some of the objects our Fellows and Trainees are discovering.

Some will have quite obvious connections to disabled people’s lives – a walking stick, some braille or images of disabled people. But we will also be exploring less obvious connections too. Sometimes the significance of an object is its owner; its part in a bigger story, or the way someone with lived experience of disability has responded to it. In this way we hope to broaden the ways that d/Deaf, disabled and neurodivergent stories are told.



Rights information: Copyright: Black Country Living Museum.


A metallic colour hearing aid.

On the front, there is a pink sticker which states the owner's name. Below the sticker is her address which has been written onto paper and then taped over. This is starting to peel off. On the base of the hearing aid, engraved is the model number 'KL6530', 'made in Holland', and the Philips logo. On the back of the hearing aid, there is a metal clip. On the top there are two black switches and a circular speaker with a yellow rim. On the side there are two holes where the receivers will have been plugged in.

This item was added to the collection as part of a selection of hearing aids which were owned by a lady who lives in the Black Country. It is important in showing the evolution of hearing aid technology. Collecting items like this helps to diversify the collections at the Black Country Living Museum by recording and valuing disability history.

- Claudia Davies, Curating for Change Fellow at Black Country Living Museum