You'll find hundreds of files on cleft lip, cleft palate here on widesmiles.org.

This one is about: More Historical Cleft Facts


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More Historical Cleft Facts

This file will be added to from time to time. The following facts were shared by Lark, a member of the email discussion list, Cleft-talk.

There have been pictographs and Haida Indian Cleft masks found.

There are African masks with unrepaired clefts, and Inuit (Native American from Alaska) ones too (clefts in their culture are revered -- like it's a "good" sign from God meaning the person is to be a respected member of the tribe)

There is speculation that Southwestern Indians' sacred "Kachina" dolls are actually modeled on people with Crouzon Syndrome.

The only skeleton that's ever been found that is known, with absolute certainty, to have been a crucifixion victim had a cleft palate!

Lisa H. adds the following reference:

If you read some of the biographies of Abraham Lincoln and /or Mary Todd Lincoln, especially those written by their contemporaries - people who worked for Lincoln - you'll find a common prejudice back then (people born with clefts were assumed to be mentally retarded). Tad Lincoln had an unrepaired cleft palate, and his speech was nearly unintelligible to all but family. Many of Lincoln's aides believed that Tad was an "imbecile" who should have been institutionalized. And yet, those same biographies will detail things Tad did that point out he was a very bright young man, the cleft prevented him from having clear speech.


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