Recent discovery of Thoreau’s notes sheds light on tragic drowning of Margaret Fuller

The Houghton Library at Harvard University has acquired the complete set of notes made by Henry David Thoreau as he visited the site of Margaret Fuller's drowning along with her husband and little son aboard the steamship Elizabeth. Here is a teaser from the article, published in the Harvard Gazette: A recent Houghton Library acquisition …

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2014 Summer Conversational Series: Margaret Fuller and the Problem of Female Genius

The Conversational series welcomed back a perennial favorite in John Matteson whose Pulitzer-prize winning book Eden’s Outcasts is a standard in Alcott scholarship. He has also written a fine book on Margaret Fuller called The Lives of Margaret Fuller; she was the focus of his presentation entitled “ ‘The Mind in the Full Glow of …

On vacation with Louisa May Alcott: Day Two of the Summer Conversational Series – Louisa as a practicing Transcendentalist

Day Two of the Summer Conversational Series featured a fine array of speakers. Kristi Lynn Martin and Duty's Faithful Child Starting off the morning was Kristi Lynn Martin, a doctoral candidate at Boston University. Martin’s many years of experience as a tour guide at Concord’s finest historical homes (The Old Manse, “Bush” (aka the Emerson …

My 3 days with Louisa May Alcott (part four): connections between Louisa May Alcott and Margaret Fuller

Note: This post is longer than usual. I had considered running it in two installments but thought it would lessen the impact of its message by doing that. So sit back with a cup of coffee, relax and read. 🙂 Two ladies, same vision Two New England feminists, both heavily influenced by transcendentalism. Both in …

My 3 days with Louisa May Alcott (part three): John Matteson talks about his two favorite ladies

This was the day I was waiting for. Ever since I started reading Eden’s Outcasts: The Story of Louisa May Alcott and Her Father, I have been dying to talk to John Matteson. His penetrating insights into Bronson and Louisa have forever changed the way I look at them (most especially Bronson). Unique understanding In …

My 3 days with Louisa May Alcott (part two): “Marmee and Louisa:” author Eve LaPlante unveils her important new book

Everyone knows the phrase, “Behind every great man stands a woman.” In the case of Louisa May Alcott, it’s a “great woman.” Who was the woman that stood behind her? She is Louisa’s mother, Abigail May Alcott, commonly known as Abba. An inside look at the life of Abba Alcott Eve LaPlante, author of Seized, …