Emancipation Proclamation-What Sort of Freedom

Susan B Anthony family

On January 1, 1863, during the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation that freed slaves in areas under rebellion. Daniel Anthony had finished his military career by this point, but he would have grasped the mixed message that Lincoln was sending. In effect, the president was freeing people whom he did not even […]

Victorian Christmas

Susan B Anthony family

Merry Christmas! This festive door from The Rowley House Museum in Williamsport, PA exemplifies the spirit of a Victorian Christmas. From Susan B. Anthony’s letters and biographies, we know that the Rochester Anthonys

Recycling Family Names

Susan B Anthony family

Nowadays expectant parents may give their babies names based on seasons, astrological signs, place names, or popular celebrities. Or they may create new names


Two large and numerous small ships foundering in a choppy sea off the coast of Martha's Vineyard

Storms off Martha’s Vineyard can get fierce with 35- to 40-knot winds and 20- to 25-foot seas. Read on for contemporary and historical accounts of sea rescues.

How to Pay a Thanksgiving Call

Susan B Anthony family

In the mood to see your friends during the Thanksgiving break? Here’s what you would do if you lived in the 1800s and she was a lady:

Lincoln’s Thanksgiving Proclamation 1861

Susan B Anthony family

Thanksgiving is my favorite national holiday, perhaps because I lull myself to sleep nightly with a gratitude list. The Civil War was taking a toll when Abraham Lincoln in 1861 decreed that the entire nation should “count its blessings” on the last Thursday of November. Here is an excerpt of Lincoln’s gratitude list as enumerated […]

American Classic Filmed in Spain?

Susan B Anthony family

Recently I watched In The Heart of the Sea, a visual feast for those interested in the whaling industry of the mid-nineteenth century. I found several noteworthy parallels with the book I’m writing about Daniel Read Anthony’s bride Anna Osborn, who grew up in Martha’s Vineyard, one of the great whaling communities of that era.

Dressing for the Weather

Susan B Anthony family

As Martha’s Vineyard, along with the rest of the northeast, braces itself for another mass of cold and ice this week, I can’t help but think how much easier we have it now than in the 1860s when Anna Osborn lived on that island. We who dash to our cars and crank up the heater can hardly imagine […]

Parlor Music: A Favoite Nineteenth Century Pasttime

Susan B Anthony family

Recently I enjoyed a concert by Jacqueline Schwab, a celebrated pianist who has made several PBS documentaries with Ken Burns, among them Civil War and Not For Ourselves Alone: The Story of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony.

Where to Fall in Love

Susan B Anthony family

Two nights ago I attended the “Turning of the Year” Ball for the English Country Dancers. It took place in downtown Rochester at the Jonathan Child House, a pillared mansion with polished wood floors, glowing chandeliers, high ceilings, ornate moldings, and a delicately turned staircase.