Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879

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Sarah Josepha Hale, née Sarah Josepha Buell, (born Oct. 24, 1788, Newport, N.H., U.S.—died April 30, 1879, Philadelphia, Pa.), American writer who, as the first female editor of a magazine, shaped many of the attitudes and thoughts of women of her period. Sarah Josepha Buell married David Hale in 1813, and with him she had five children. Left in financial straits by her husband’s death in 1822, she embarked on a literary career. Her poems were printed over the signature Cornelia in local journals and were gathered in The Genius of Oblivion (1823). A novel, Northwood, a Tale of New England (1827), brought her an offer to go to Boston as editor of a new publication, the Ladies’ Magazine (from 1834 the American Ladies’ Magazine), which she accepted in 1828. As editor, Hale wrote most of the material for each issue herself—literary criticism, sketches of American life, essays, and poetry. Editorially and personally, she supported patriotic and humanitarian organizations, notably the Boston Ladies’ Peace Society and the Seaman’s Aid Society, which she founded in 1833. She advocated education for women and opportunities for women to teach, although she always remained apart from formal feminist movements. She also advised her readers to shun “unfeminine” involvement in public affairs. The greater access to education—particularly higher education—that men possessed, she argued, prepared them for leadership roles that women could not assume, because there were few educational opportunities for women at the time. She also published during this period Poems for Our Children (1830), containing her single most famous piece, “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” and in 1834–36 edited the Juvenile Miscellany magazine for children. In 1837, Louis A. Godey took over the American Ladies’ Magazine and established Hale as editor of his Lady’s Book, soon known as Godey’s Lady’s Book, which he had established seven years earlier in Philadelphia. She moved to that city in 1841. With Godey she made the Lady’s Book into the most influential and widely circulated women’s magazine published in the country up to that time (by 1860 its circulation was reputedly 150,000). Hale did much to encourage original work by American writers; among those published in the Lady’s Book were Edgar Allan Poe, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and Harriet Beecher Stowe. She also continued to call for female education in the liberal arts and for more women teachers, and hers was among the most persuasive voices that encouraged the founding of Vassar College. In later years, Hale liberalized her outlook so far as to approve women doctors, if only to treat those ailments of women that she felt were otherwise better endured than examined by male physicians. She was also active in promoting child welfare, and she published a number of books, including cookbooks, poetry, and prose. Her major achievement was the Woman’s Record; or, Sketches of Distinguished Women, issued in 1853, 1869, and 1876; in the course of this ambitious project she completed some 36 volumes of profiles of women, tracing their influence through history on social organization and literature. She retired from Godey’s Lady’s Book in December 1877 at the age of 89.
Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Correspondence, 1850-1877, 1863-1867 (bulk) Campbell University, Wiggins Memorial Library
creatorOf McLoughlin Bros., inc. Mary and her lamb, [ca. 1880] / McLoughlin Bros., New York. Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
referencedIn May family. Papers of the May and Goddard families, 1766-1912 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Buchanan, James L. Letter : London, to Sarah Josepha Buell Hale, [Philadelphia], 1853 Sept. 23. University of Chicago Library
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Sarah Josepha Hale papers, 1850-1877, 1863-1867 (bulk). Campbell University, Wiggins Memorial Library
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Autograph, 1864 Feb. Buffalo History Museum, Research Library
referencedIn Autograph File, C, 1554-2002. Houghton Library
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Autograph letters signed (31) and letters signed (2) : Philadelphia, to Harper & Brothers, 1847 Apr. 9-1878 Mar. 2. Pierpont Morgan Library.
creatorOf Hart, John S. (John Seely), 1810-1877. John S. Hart letters, 1834-1877. Cornell University Library
referencedIn Poems and correspondence, 1824-1851 and undated. Houghton Library
referencedIn Autograph File, B, ca.1500-1976. Houghton Library
referencedIn Buchanan, James L. Letter : London, to Sarah Josepha Buell Hale, [Philadelphia], 1853 Sept. 23. Texas Christian University
creatorOf Davis, John Brazer, 1798-1832. Letters, 1819-1832. Massachusetts Historical Society
creatorOf Warren, George Washington, 1813-1883. Papers, 1853-1880. Massachusetts Historical Society
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Correspondence, 1830-1855. UNH Durham, Dimond Library
referencedIn Holden, Austin Wells, 1819-1891. Holden papers, 1820-1918. New York State Historical Documents
referencedIn Literary Manuscripts collection, 1666-1990 Free Library of Philadelphia: Rare Book Department
referencedIn Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth. Letters to Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. 1761-1904. Harvard University, Houghton Library
creatorOf Everett, Alexander Hill, 1790-1847. Autograph letter : Roxbury, Mass., to Mrs. S.J. Hale, [18--] Nov. 16. Pierpont Morgan Library.
referencedIn Charles Henry Brainard papers, 1795-1884 and undated. Houghton Library
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Letter and portraits [manuscript], n.d. University of Virginia. Library
creatorOf Webster, Daniel, 1782-1852. Letter, 1830 Feb. 25, to Sarah J. Hale New Hampshire Newsp Project
creatorOf Poe, Edgar Allan, 1809-1849. Facsimiles of Poe letters [manuscript] 1841-1849. University of Virginia. Library
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Letter of Sarah Josepha Buell Hale, 1856. Library of Congress
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Sarah J. Hale letters, 1850-1855. Pennsylvania State University Libraries
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. ALS, [18]35 Apr. 17, Boston, to Carey & Hart, Philadelphia. Rosenbach Museum & Library
referencedIn Benjamin, Park, 1809-1864. Benjamin Park papers, 1645-1925. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Autograph letter signed : to Bayard Taylor, 1847 April 30. Pierpont Morgan Library.
referencedIn Willis, Nathaniel Parker, 1806-1867. Nathaniel Parker Willis collection, 1813-1866. Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
referencedIn Benjamin Bussey collection, Bussey, Benjamin collection, 1767-1872, 1800-1847 William L. Clements Library , University of Michigan
creatorOf Willis, Nathaniel Parker, 1806-1867. Letters to Sarah Josepha Buell Hale, [1829?-ca. 1848]. Huntington Library, Art Collections & Botanical Gardens
referencedIn Godey's Lady's Book Historic Landmark Project. Papers : , 1970-1973. Bryn Mawr College, Mariam Coffin Canaday Library
referencedIn Sara Josepha Hale Collection, 1889-1931 University of Virginia. Library. Special Collections Dept.
referencedIn Osterud, Nancy Grey, 1948-. Papers, 1969-1975 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Letter and portraits, n.d. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Willis, Nathaniel Parker, 1806-1867. Nathaniel Parker Willis collection, 1813-1866. Yale University Library
referencedIn Beecher-Stowe family papers, 1798-1956 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
creatorOf Soulé, Pierre, 1801-1870,. Autograph letter signed from Pierre Soulé, Washington, to Mrs. Sarah J. Hale, Philadelphia [manuscript], 1852-1853. Folger Shakespeare Library
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Philanthropy [manuscript] : poem, 1851 Dec. 22. University of Virginia. Library
creatorOf McLoughlin Bros., inc. Mary and her lamb, [ca. 1880] / McLoughlin Bros., New York. Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
referencedIn Poetry manuscripts, [1850s-1880s] William L. Clements Library , University of Michigan
referencedIn James Russell Lowell papers, 1835-1919. Houghton Library
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Autograph letter signed : Philadelphia, to the Rev. John Pierpont, 1848 Mar. 31. Pierpont Morgan Library.
referencedIn Biographical essays of the National Society of the Colonial Dames of America, 1975-ca. 1978 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Edwin Way Teale Papers, undated, 1799-1995. Archives and Special Collections at the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center, University of Connecticut Libraries
referencedIn Ambler, W. E., fl. 1889,. Correspondence pertaining to Sarah Josepha Hale's authorship of Mary had a little lamb, 1889-1931. University of Virginia. Library
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Letter to Margaret Bayard Smith [manuscript], 1841 February 10. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Jacob Bailey Moore papers, 1811-1851. Houghton Library
creatorOf Janvier, Francis De Haes, 1817-1885. Letter to Sarah Josepha Hale [manuscript], 1857 June 21. University of Virginia. Library
creatorOf Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth, 1807-1882. Papers of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow [manuscript], 1764-1934 (bulk 1830-1881). University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Mulligan, James A., 1830-1864. James A. Mulligan papers, 1849-1900. Chicago History Museum
creatorOf Dwight, Theodore Frelinghuysen, 1846-1917. Papers II, 1734-1869, bulk: 1800-1864. Massachusetts Historical Society
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Letter to Mrs Mary Judson. [s.l.]. [18--] Mar. 9. University of Iowa Libraries
referencedIn Kellers, Edward Henry, 1836-1906. Edward Henry Kellers papers, 1852-1893. University of South Carolina, University Libraries
referencedIn Houghton Library printed book provenance file, E-K. Houghton Library
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Papers of Sarah Josepha Buell [manuscript] 1827-79. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Park Benjamin Papers, 1645-1925. Columbia University. Rare Book and Manuscript Library,
referencedIn George Pope Morris collection of papers, 1830-1863 The New York Public Library. Henry W. and Albert A. Berg Collection of English and American Literature.
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Letter : Boston, to Alonzo Lewis, Lynn, Mass., 1831 February 7. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Sara Josepha Hale Collection, 1831 Feb 7 University of Virginia. Library. Special Collections Dept.
creatorOf Howells, William Dean, 1837-1920. Letters, 1870-1876, to Edward Everett Hale and Sarah Josepha Buell Hale. University of Pennsylvania Libraries, Van Pelt Library
referencedIn Autograph File, H, 1584-1988. Houghton Library
referencedIn May family. Papers of the May and Goddard families, 1766-1912 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
creatorOf Carey, Mathew, 1760-1839. Mathew Carey letters, 1802-1832. Pennsylvania State University Libraries
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Papers, 1841-1879 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. What might a single mind may wield : poem, 1861, "Feby." 19, Philadelphia. Brown University, John Hay Library
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Letters, 1828-1868. Brown University, John Hay Library
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Autograph letter signed : [Boston], to the Rev. John Pierpont, 1837 June 26. Pierpont Morgan Library.
creatorOf Davis, William, d. 1826. Letters, 1816-1884, bulk: 1816-1819. Massachusetts Historical Society
referencedIn Dorothea Lynde Dix papers, 1798-1893 (inclusive), 1827-1887 (bulk). Houghton Library
referencedIn Papers, 1969-1975 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn James Thomas Fields collection of autographs and portraits of distinguished women, 1814-1907. Houghton Library
creatorOf Poe, Edgar Allan, 1809-1849. Letters from Poe and article about him [manuscript] 1836-1847. University of Virginia. Library
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Correspondence with Rev. Dr. Prince, Dec. 23, 1874, 1413 Locust St, Philadelphia, Messrs. Carey and Hart, January 27, 1835, Boston, Dr. James Rush, Philadelphia, Oct. 23, 1865, Dr. and Mrs. E. B. Mason, Jan. 9, 1865, Philadelphia ; from J. R. Thomson, May 10, 1867, Shanghai and D. E. Wilson, Nov. 2, 1846, Allentown / Sarah Josepha Hale. University of Wisconsin - Madison, General Library System
referencedIn Betsy Beinecke Shirley collection of American children's literature, 1640-2001 Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
creatorOf Bussey, Benjamin, 1757-1842. Benjamin Bussey collection, 1767-1872, bulk 1800-1847. University of Michigan, William Clements Library
referencedIn Sarah Helen Whitman papers, Whitman (Sarah Helen) papers, 1816-1878, 1816-1878 Brown University Library, Special Collections
creatorOf DePaola, Tomie, 1934-. Mary had a little lamb : production material. University of Minnesota, Minneapolis
creatorOf Whittier, John Greenleaf, 1807-1892. John Greenleaf Whittier Papers, 1808-1940. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Embury, Emma C. (Emma Catherine), 1806-1863. Emma C. Embury salon album, 1825-1870. Cornell University Library
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Letter to Alonzo Lewis [manuscript], 1831 February 7. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Papers, 1766-1912 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879,. Autograph letters signed from Sara Josepha Buell Hale, Boston and Philadelphia, to various people [manuscript], 1807-1853. Folger Shakespeare Library
referencedIn Autograph File, H, 1584-1988. Houghton Library
creatorOf Hale, Edward Everett, 1822-1909. Letters, 1851 June 3-1900 Jan. 25. Boston Athenaeum
referencedIn Palfrey Family of New England. Palfrey family papers. 1713-1915. Houghton Library
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. The three sceptres [manuscript] : a vision, [18th-19th century] / by Mrs. S.J. Hale. Folger Shakespeare Library
referencedIn Correspondence and other papers, 1831-1891. Houghton Library
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Letter to Lydia H. Sigourney. Boston, MA. 1828 Mar. 3. University of Iowa Libraries
referencedIn Sara Josepha Hale Collection, 1841 Feb 10 University of Virginia. Library. Special Collections Dept.
referencedIn Benson John Lossing Collection, 1843-1917 Syracuse University. Library. Special Collections Research Center
creatorOf Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879. Autograph letter signed : Philadelphia, to Bayard Taylor, 1847 Apr. 12. Pierpont Morgan Library.
creatorOf Drake, Elias Franklin, 1813-1892. Elias Franklin Drake and family papers, 1814-1917. Minnesota Historical Society, Division of Archives and Manuscripts
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
correspondedWith Beecher family family
associatedWith Benjamin, Park, 1809-1864. person
associatedWith Benjamin, Park, 1849-1922 person
correspondedWith Boyd, Joseph B., fl. 1807-1853 person
associatedWith Brainard, Charles Henry, 1817-1885 person
associatedWith Buchanan, James L. person
associatedWith Bussey, Benjamin, 1757-1842. person
associatedWith Cairns Collection of American Women Writers. corporateBody
associatedWith Carey & Hart. corporateBody
associatedWith Carey, Mathew, 1760-1839. person
associatedWith Davis, John Brazer, 1798-1832. person
associatedWith Davis, William, d. 1826. person
associatedWith DePaola, Tomie, 1934- person
correspondedWith Dix, Dorothea Lynde, 1802-1887 person
associatedWith Drake, Elias Franklin, 1813-1892. person
associatedWith Dwight, Theodore Frelinghuysen, 1846-1917. person
associatedWith Embury, Emma C. (Emma Catherine), 1806-1863. person
associatedWith Everett, Alexander Hill, 1790-1847. person
associatedWith Fields, James Thomas, 1817-1881, person
associatedWith Free Library of Philadelphia. corporateBody
associatedWith Godey, Louis Antoine, 1804-1878 person
associatedWith Godey's Lady's Book Historic Landmark Project. corporateBody
associatedWith Goodrich, Samuel G. (Samuel Griswold), 1793-1860, person
associatedWith Gould, Hannah Flagg, 1789-1865 person
associatedWith Grant, Ulysses S. (Ulysses Simpson), 1822-1885, person
associatedWith Griswold, Rufus W. (Rufus Wilmot), 1815-1857, person
associatedWith Hale, Edward Everett, 1822-1909. person
associatedWith Harper & Brothers, corporateBody
associatedWith Harrison, William Henry, 1773-1841, person
associatedWith Hart, John S. (John Seely), 1810-1877. person
associatedWith Holden, Austin Wells, 1819-1891. person
associatedWith Houghton Library. corporateBody
associatedWith Howells, William Dean, 1837-1920. person
associatedWith Janvier, Francis De Haes, 1817-1885. person
associatedWith Jewett, Milo Parker, 1808-1882. person
associatedWith Judson, Mary, person
correspondedWith Kellers, Edward Henry, 1836-1906. person
associatedWith Lewis, Alonzo, 1794-1861, person
associatedWith Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth, 1807-1882. person
associatedWith Lossing, Benson John, 1813-1891. person
correspondedWith Lowell, James Russell, 1819-1891 person
associatedWith Mason, Ellen Huntly Bullard. person
associatedWith Mason, Francis, 1799-1874. person
associatedWith May family. family
associatedWith May family. family
associatedWith MAY-GODDARD FAMILY family
associatedWith McLoughlin Bros., inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Mitchell, William, person
associatedWith Moore, Jacob Bailey, 1797-1853 person
associatedWith Morris, George Pope, 1802-1864 person
associatedWith Mulligan, James A., 1830-1864. person
associatedWith Nancy Grey Osterud, 1948- person
associatedWith National Society of the Colonial Dames of America corporateBody
associatedWith Osterud, Nancy Grey, 1948- person
associatedWith Palfrey family. family
correspondedWith Parton, James, 1822-1891 person
associatedWith Pierpont, John, 1785-1866, person
associatedWith Poe, Edgar Allan, 1809-1849. person
associatedWith Prince, Rev. person
correspondedWith Putnam, C. H. (Catherine Hunt), b. 1792 person
associatedWith Raymond, John H. (John Howard), 1814-1878. person
associatedWith Rush, James, 1786-1869. person
associatedWith Shirley, Betsy Beinecke. person
associatedWith Sigourney, L. H. (Lydia Howard), 1791-1865, person
associatedWith Smith, Margaret Bayard, 1778-1844, person
correspondedWith Soulé, Pierre, 1801-1870, person
associatedWith Taylor, Bayard, 1825-1878, person
associatedWith Teale, Edwin Way, 1899- person
associatedWith Thomson, J. R., Mrs. person
associatedWith United States Exploring Expedition (1838-1842) corporateBody
associatedWith University of Wisconsin--Madison. Libraries. Dept. of Special Collections. corporateBody
associatedWith Vassar College. corporateBody
associatedWith Vassar, Matthew, 1792-1868. person
associatedWith Warren, George Washington, 1813-1883. person
associatedWith Webster, Daniel, 1782-1852. person
associatedWith White, Andrew Dickson, 1832-1918. person
associatedWith Whitman, John Winslow, 1799-1833, person
associatedWith Whitman, Sarah Helen, 1803-1878. person
associatedWith Whittier, John Greenleaf, 1807-1892. person
associatedWith Willis, Nathaniel Parker, 1806-1867. person
associatedWith Wilson, D. E. person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Massachusetts
United States
New York (State)--Poughkeepsie
New York (State)--Poughkeepsie
Subject
Editors--19th century
Women--Education
Karen (Southeast Asian people)--Missions
Women--Employment
American poetry--Women authors--19th century
Women's colleges
American literature--Women authors--19th century
Women in missionary work
Authors and publishers
American literature--Women authors
Women periodical editors--19th century
Women and religion
Occupation
Editors
Authors
Function

Person

Birth 1788-10-24

Death 1879-04-30

Information

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