Melville Ballard became the first undergraduate student to receive a degree from Gallaudet College. He was born in Maine and attended the American School for the Deaf in Hartford, Connecticut. Ballard completed his education and became a teacher. He also founded a newspaper called “The Silent World” with a group of his friends. Another interesting fact about Ballard is his role as a translator for Congressman James Garfield, who later became the President of the United States. Garfield corresponded with the French Emperor Louis Napoleon Bonaparte III, who communicated in French. Ballard, who was fluent in English, French, and Latin, helped with the translations. Part of the “Deaf History That” series.