Gil Eastman Timeline


Prepared by Gary Wait, Archivist, American School for the Deaf

Born: 12 September 1934 in Middletown, Conn.

Entered ASD: September 1937, as student # 3719.

Activities at ASD:

Jan/Feb. 1952 attended Gallaudet Student Institute at Gallaudet Coll.

Member of Student Association Board (1951)

Participated in Gallaudet Day Ceremonies, 7 Dec. 1951

Member Clerc Literary Society

Won prize for original story, “King Edward’s Secret Wall”,

December 1950

1949/50, 1950/51 Reported “Boys’ News” for American Era.

Graduated, ASD: 13 June 1952.

Entered Gallaudet College: September 1952

Elected to Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities, 1957.

Graduated from Gallaudet College (A.B. in art), 1957.

Married June Russi (ASD # 3846), a professional actress  [date?]

1957-1992: Founder of, and Instructor in, Gallaudet College’s Drama Dept.;

from 1963 as Dept. Chairman.

1963, earned an A.M. in drama from Catholic Univ. in Washington, D.C.,

the first deaf person to earn such a degree.

Summers 1967, ’68,’71 attended, acted and taught in NTD summer


1972 wrote an ASL version of Antigone. Performed at the Kennedy Cen.

1972 wrote Sign Me Alice.

1977 wrote Laurent Clerc: a Profile.

1982 wrote What.

1983 wrote Alladin and His Magic Lamp.

1985-1995 Co-host of Deaf Mosaic [TV], for which he received an Emmy


1989 published book, From Mime to Sign.

1992 Founders’ Day, visits ASD for celebration of school’s 175th


1996 Published Just a DEAF Person’s Thoughts, a corpus of experiences,

quotes, and ideas about being deaf.

1998 Visits ASD for dedication of the restored Clerc Burial plot at

Spring Grove Cemetery; presents an address on that occasion,

part of which is printed in the Spring 1998 issue of the Era. Also

served as LSF interpreter for the French visitors at the dedication


2006 October 13: Visits ASD to be inducted into the School’s Hall of

Fame for outstanding lifetime achievement.

2006 Dec 2  Died of cancer.

In Eastman’s memory, the black-box theatre in Gallaudet’s Elstad Center

was named the Gilbert C. Eastman Studio Theatre.



“Profile : Gilbert C. Eastman”  in American Era, Spring 1993, p. 11.

Photos and brief biographies in souvenir programs of NTD productions.

Eastman, Gilbert C., ‘Glittering Forever’ portion of an address given at

ASD during the Clerc Headstone ceremonies, in American Era,

Spring 1998, p. 9.  In this he describes Clerc’s funeral

“Gilbert C. Eastman” in: Harry G. Lang and Bonnie Meath-Lang, Deaf

Persons in the Arts and Sciences (Westport, Conn. : Greenwood Press,

1995), p. 103-105.

A tribute to Eastman, with cover photo, appeared in the February 2007 issue

of Deaflife.

The best website biography of Eastman is:

Published on January 11, 2010 at 1:58 pm  Leave a Comment  

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