Morgan, Angela, 1874-1957.

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American poet and novelist, author of numerous poems (some with anti-war themes), and participant in International Congress of Women at The Hague in 1915 and subsequent activities of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom.

From the description of Angela Morgan papers, 1861-1957. (University of Michigan). WorldCat record id: 34422714

Angela Morgan was an American poet and novelist, the author of numerous poems (some with anti-war themes). She was a participant in the International Congress of Women at The Hague in 1915 and subsequent activities of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom.

The papers of Angela Morgan document her long career as a twentieth century writer and social reformer. The author of numerous poems and other literary works, she "projected a clear vision of a new social order". Throughout her work runs the prophecy of the triumph of new moral values and a strong identification with the "downtrodden masses".

Very little is known about her early life. She was born Nina Lillian Morgan, but adopted the name Angela after she began writing. Her date and place of birth are not known, but her obituary in the New York Times seems to indicate that she was born around 1873 when her family was living in Yazoo County, Mississippi. In 1915, when she went abroad, she claimed to have been born in 1885, but that conflicts with her comments elsewhere about remembering Washington, D.C. as her childhood home. (The family left Washington around 1885.) On a later trip she gave her date of birth as 1889, but she published her first book in 1898 and was married in 1900, so the 1873 date may be correct.

Angela's father was Colonel Albert Talmon Morgan, a native of New York who was raised on a farm near Fox Lake, Wisconsin. His studies at Oberlin College and the Quaker ancestry of his mother apparently led him to strong anti-slavery views which caused him to drop out of college and enlist in the Union Army in 1861. He served throughout the Civil War, rose steadily through the ranks, and was finally mustered out as a Lieutenant Colonel on July 14, 1865.

Soon after the war, Albert and his brother Charles became "carpetbaggers" in Mississippi, taking over an old plantation. Albert later told the story of his adventures in Mississippi politics during Reconstruction in his book Yazoo, or On the Picket Line of Freedom in the South (New York: Russell and Russell, 1968) which was originally published in 1884. This book details his problems in the South, many of which resulted from his marriage to Carolyn Victoria Highgate, a teacher in a Freedman's Bureau school who was a daughter of a mulatto father and a white mother.

With the end of Reconstruction in 1876, the family was forced to leave the South. Albert received a minor patronage position in the federal pension service at Washington, D.C., as a result of his loyalty to the Republican Party. This job lasted until 1885, when the Democrats regained power and Albert was replaced. The family then moved to Lawrence, Kansas, where Albert was unsuccessful in a number of business ventures. Around 1890, he left his family in Topeka, Kansas and went to Colorado to prospect for gold and silver. Except for occasional visits with his family, he remained in Colorado until his death in 1922.

After Albert left his family, his children began earning their livelihood by performing on stage. The four daughters performed as a quartet and the son, Bert, as baritone and manager for the group. At one time, they appeared as "The Morgans" and later the four girls performed as the "Angela Sisters". (Perhaps it was from here that Nina got the name Angela.) The performing career of the Morgans apparently came to an end with the death of Helen in 1898. Soon thereafter the other three daughters married and retired from the stage.

In the late 1890's Angela succeeded in getting a number of poems and two children's books published and turned her energies toward a writing career. Convinced that it would take some time before she could earn a living as a poet, she worked for a number of years as a journalist in Chicago, Boston, and New York. As part of her work she visited police courts and jails and the slums of the larger cities and came into contact with "the so-called lower strata of society". During this time she was also successful in getting a large number of poems and short stories published in the popular magazines of the time.

Although the Morgans had been Congregationalists before the turn of the century, Angela's mother (who lived with her) became interested in some of the new religious currents and became a Christian Science lecturer. Angela seems to have explored Swedenborgianism, the Bahai faith, and other religions at this time and throughout her career took a strong interest in metaphysics

Angela Morgan was married in 1900 to Peter Sweningson, but she apparently did not find that marriage suited her. The marriage ended fairly quickly, although they were not divorced until 1906. After leaving her husband, she lived with her mother in Chicago, Boston and New York until 1923, when they moved to London. After her mother's death in London in 1926, Angela returned to the United States and settled in Philadelphia.

Around 1914 Angela's literary work came to the attention of three wealthy women--Mrs. Emily Vanderbilt Sloane Hammond, Mrs. Kate M. Ladd, and Mrs. Louise W. Carnegie (the wife of Andrew Carnegie). They provided her with the support she needed in order to give up her newspaper work and devote all of her energies to the writing of poetry. Her first book of poetry was published in 1914 and other volumes followed in quick succession. Many of the poems in these books were published first in such popular magazines as The Ladies Home Journal, Cosmopolitan Magazine and Hearst's Magazine . Among her best known poems were "Hail Man," "Work, a Song of Triumph," "The Battle Cry of the Mothers," and "God Prays."

The outside financial support she received was never enough to make life easy for her, however. Besides supporting her mother and sending occasional sums of money to her father, she had to provide much of the support for her two sisters who were in a sanatorium. The Depression finally made her financial situation so bad that she was forced to declare bankruptcy in 1933. Although things improved somewhat after that time, her financial situation was never too strong. Although her career probably peaked in the era from 1914 to 1930, she continued to write and publish poetry right down to her death in 1957.

From the guide to the Angela Morgan Papers, 1893-1957, (Bentley Historical Library University of Michigan)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Adams, Fred Winslow, 1866-1945. person
associatedWith Addams, Jane, 1860-1935. person
associatedWith Aked, Charles Frederic, 1864-1941. person
associatedWith American Neutral Conference Committee. corporateBody
associatedWith American Peace Society. corporateBody
associatedWith Authors' League of America. corporateBody
associatedWith Balch, Emily Greene, 1867-1961. person
associatedWith Baldwin, Ruth Standish. person
associatedWith Baldwin, Ruth Standish. person
associatedWith Banning, Kendall, 1879-1944. person
associatedWith Barton, Bruce, 1886-1967. person
associatedWith Beckley, Zöe, d. 1961. person
associatedWith Bestor, Arthur Eugene, 1879-1944. person
associatedWith Bigelow, William F. (William Frederick), 1879-1966. person
associatedWith Booth, Evangeline, 1865-1950. person
associatedWith Bragdon, Claude Fayette, 1866-1946. person
associatedWith Branch, Anna Hempstead, d. 1937. person
associatedWith Bridgman, Howard Allen, 1860-1929. person
associatedWith Browne, Anita. person
associatedWith Bryce, James Bryce, Viscount, 1838-1922 person
associatedWith Bureau of Legal First Aid. corporateBody
associatedWith Burton, Ernest De Witt, 1856-1925 person
associatedWith Cadman, S. Parkes (Samuel Parkes), 1864-1936 person
associatedWith Carnegie, Dale, 1888-1955 person
associatedWith Carnegie, Louise Whitfield, 1857-1946 person
associatedWith Carruth, Hayden, 1862-1932 person
associatedWith Chamberlain, Samuel Selwyn, 1851-1916 person
associatedWith Cheyney, Ralph. person
associatedWith Church Peace Union. corporateBody
associatedWith Clark, Thomas Curtis, 1877-1953 person
associatedWith Coleman, George William, 1867-1950 person
associatedWith Conant, Isabel Fiske. person
associatedWith Condon, Randall J. (Randall Judson), 1862-1931 person
associatedWith Cooke, Edmund Vance, 1866-1932 person
associatedWith Costain, Thomas Bertram, 1885- person
associatedWith Crow, Martha Foote, 1854-1924 person
associatedWith Debs Memorial Radio Fund. corporateBody
associatedWith Debs, Theodore, 1864-1945 person
associatedWith Del Mar, Eugene, 1864-1941 person
associatedWith Dreiser, Theodore, 1871-1945 person
associatedWith Dutton, Samuel Train, 1849-1919 person
associatedWith Eastman, Crystal, 1881-1928 person
associatedWith Eastman, John Coates, 1862-1925 person
associatedWith Eaton, Lily W. person
associatedWith Elson, William Harris, 1856-1935 person
associatedWith Emergency Peace Campaign (U.S.) corporateBody
associatedWith Emergency Peace Federation (U.S.) corporateBody
associatedWith Erskine, John, 1879-1951 person
associatedWith Fagnani, Charles P. person
associatedWith Fagnani, Charles Prospero, 1854-1940 person
associatedWith Fellowship of Reconciliation (U.S.) corporateBody
associatedWith First Church for Animal Rights. corporateBody
associatedWith Fleischer, Charles, 1871-1942 person
associatedWith Ford Peace Ship. corporateBody
associatedWith Fosdick, Harry Emerson, 1878-1969 person
associatedWith Frank, Henry, 1854-1933 person
associatedWith Friends of Freedom for India. corporateBody
associatedWith General Federation of Women's Clubs. corporateBody
associatedWith Griggs, Edward Howard, 1868-1951 person
associatedWith Guthrie, Kenneth Sylvan, 1871-1940 person
associatedWith Haggard, Sewell, 1879-1928 person
associatedWith Hammond, Emily Vanderbilt Sloane, 1874- person
associatedWith Hammond, John Henry, 1871-1949 person
associatedWith Harriman, Karl Edwin, 1875-1935 person
associatedWith Harrison, Henry. person
associatedWith Hays, Will H. (Will Harrison), 1879-1954 person
associatedWith Hearst, William Randolph, 1863-1951 person
associatedWith Henry Ford Peace Expedition, 1915-1916 corporateBody
associatedWith Hodgkin, Henry Theodore, 1877-1933 person
associatedWith Holmes, Burton, b. 1870 person
associatedWith Holmes, John Haynes, 1879-1964 person
associatedWith Holt, Hamilton, 1872-1951 person
associatedWith Hoover, Herbert, 1874-1964 person
associatedWith Huebsch, B. W. (Benjamin W.), 1876-1964 person
associatedWith Industrial Workers of the World. corporateBody
associatedWith International Congress of Women (1915 : Hague, Netherlands) corporateBody
associatedWith International Congress of Women (1915 : The Hague) corporateBody
associatedWith International Council for Patriotic Service. corporateBody
associatedWith James, William, 1842-1910 person
associatedWith Johnson, Robert Underwood, 1853-1937 person
associatedWith Jones, Edith Lloyd. person
associatedWith Jones, Jenkin Lloyd, 1843-1918 person
associatedWith Keyes, Frances Parkinson, 1885-1970 person
associatedWith Ladd, Kate Macy, 1863-1945 person
associatedWith Ladd, Walter Graeme. person
associatedWith Laidler, Harry Wellington, 1884-1970 person
associatedWith Lane, Margaret. person
associatedWith League for the Larger Life. corporateBody
associatedWith League of Small and Subject Nationalities. corporateBody
associatedWith Lengel, William C. (William Charles), 1888-1965 person
associatedWith Libby, Frederick Joseph, 1874- person
associatedWith Lynch, Frederick Henry, 1867-1934 person
associatedWith MacManus, Seumas, 1869-1960 person
associatedWith Markham, Anna Catherine, 1859-1938 person
associatedWith Markham, Edwin, 1852-1940 person
associatedWith Matthews, Brander, 1852-1929 person
associatedWith McAdoo, Eleanor Wilson, 1889-1967 person
associatedWith Mooney, Thomas J., 1882-1942 person
associatedWith Morgan, Albert Talmon, 1841-1922 person
associatedWith Morgan, G. Campbell (George Campbell), 1863-1945 person
associatedWith Musser, Benjamin Francis. person
associatedWith National Cathedral Association. corporateBody
associatedWith National Kindergarten Association. corporateBody
associatedWith National League of American Pen Women. corporateBody
associatedWith National Music League. corporateBody
associatedWith National Unemployment League (U.S.) corporateBody
associatedWith National Woman's Party. corporateBody
associatedWith Nearing, Scott, 1883- person
associatedWith O'Hara, Geoffrey, 1882- person
associatedWith Olmsted, Mildred Scott, 1890-1990 person
associatedWith Paine, Albert Bigelow, 1861-1937 person
associatedWith Paquin, Samuel Savil, 1868-1943 person
associatedWith Parkhurst, C. H. (Charles Henry), 1842-1933 person
associatedWith Peale, Norman Vincent, 1898- person
associatedWith Pennsylvania Committee for Total Disarmament. corporateBody
associatedWith People's Chorus of New York. corporateBody
associatedWith People's Council of America. corporateBody
associatedWith People's Mandate to Governments to End War. corporateBody
associatedWith Phelps, William Lyon, 1865-1943 person
associatedWith Pierpont, John, 1785-1866. person
associatedWith Pillsbury, Parker, 1809-1898 person
associatedWith Poetry Society of America. corporateBody
associatedWith Randall, John Herman, 1871-1946 person
associatedWith Rebecca Shelley person
associatedWith Rebel Poets. corporateBody
associatedWith Reynolds, Paul Revere, 1864-1944 person
associatedWith Rider, Fremont, 1885-1962 person
associatedWith Robinson, Corinne Roosevelt, 1861-1933 person
associatedWith Russell, Charles Edward, 1860-1941 person
associatedWith Sarett, Lew, 1888-1954 person
associatedWith Shaw, Mark Revell, 1889- person
associatedWith Shelley, Rebecca, 1887- person
associatedWith Shelley, Rebecca, 1887-1984 person
associatedWith Shelly, William Alfred, 1854-1930 person
associatedWith Sinclair, Upton, 1878-1968 person
associatedWith Smith, George Jay, 1866- person
associatedWith Socialist Party (U.S.) corporateBody
associatedWith Stevenson, Burton Egbert, 1872-1962 person
associatedWith Stidger, William L. (William LeRoy), 1886- person
associatedWith Stoner, Winifred Sackville, d. 1931 person
associatedWith Tarbell, Ida M. (Ida Minerva), 1857-1944 person
associatedWith Thomas, Lowell, 1892-1981 person
associatedWith Thomas, Norman, 1884-1968 person
associatedWith Towne, Charles Hanson, 1877-1949 person
associatedWith Trent, Lucia. person
associatedWith United Peace Chest. corporateBody
associatedWith University of Michigan. Dept. of History. corporateBody
associatedWith Van Dyke, Henry, 1852-1933 person
associatedWith Vigilantes. corporateBody
associatedWith Vigilantes (Organization) corporateBody
associatedWith Villard, Fanny Garrison, 1844-1928 person
associatedWith Vivisection Investigation League. corporateBody
associatedWith Wald, Lillian D., 1867-1940 person
associatedWith Weatherly, Arthur. person
associatedWith Weller, Charles Frederick, 1870-1957 person
associatedWith Wetherill, Samuel Price. person
associatedWith Wheeler, Edward J. (Edward Jewitt), 1859-1922 person
associatedWith White, Trumbull, b. 1868 person
associatedWith Wilcox, Ella Wheeler, 1850-1919 person
associatedWith Wiley, Franklin Baldwin, 1861-1930 person
associatedWith William G. McAdoo person
associatedWith Wilson, Woodrow, 1856-1924. person
associatedWith Woman's Peace Party. corporateBody
associatedWith Woman's Pro-League Council. corporateBody
associatedWith Women's International League for Peace and Freedom. corporateBody
associatedWith Women's National Committee for Hands Off the Supreme Court. corporateBody
associatedWith Women's Peace Society. corporateBody
associatedWith Wood, L. Hollingsworth (Levi Hollingsworth), 1874-1956 person
associatedWith World Court League. corporateBody
associatedWith Young, William Wesley, 1868- person
Place Name Admin Code Country
New York (N.Y.)
United States
New York (N.Y.)
United States
Authors, American
Women authors, American
General Strike, Great Britain, 1926
Labor and laboring classes
Strikes and lockouts
Strikes and lockouts
World War, 1914-1918
Women and peace
Women's rights
Women's rights


Birth 1874

Death 1957

Related Descriptions


Ark ID: w6n39hk0

SNAC ID: 5597367