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Disability Action Center NW

A disability lesson from history

I only recently found out President Abraham Lincon got a traumatic brain injury when a mule kicked him in the back of his head. This brain injury caused some defects on his vision.

When Lincoln recovered from the traumatic brain injury, he suffered depression for many years. Only then it was referred to as “melancholia”. Such a situation was considered to be normal in those days. Depression is another mental disorder that often follows traumatic brain injury, especially if the effects are severe.

I remember reading and learning about his melancholia. But never made any connection to it being a disability. And despite having the depression he managed an impressive law career and became president of the United States. People with disabilities are able to do amazing things – we just do it a bit differently!


“The wheelchair should not be a symbol of disability. A wheelchair is a vehicle to liberation and freedom; a chariot for independence.” ~ Rick Hansen, Author and creator of characters with disabilities.