Thursday, December 09, 2010
"The one great personal tragedy of [Edward Page] Mitchell's life was a bizarre accident in 1872, when he was twenty years old. On a train journey from Bowdoin College to Bath, Maine, a hot cinder from the engine's smokestack flew in through the window and struck Mitchell's left eye, blinding it. After several weeks, while doctors attempted to restore this eye's sight, Mitchell's uninjured right eye suddenly underwent sympathetic blindness, rendering him completely sightless. His burnt left eye eventually healed and regained its sight, but his uninjured right eye remained blind. The sightless eye was later removed surgically, and replaced with a prosthetic glass eye."