Biography Seminar- Marriage of Minds or Boston Divorce?
Caroline Healey Dall (1822-1912) and Charles Henry Appleton Dall (1816-1886) met in Boston where, as a teenager in Margaret Fuller’s Conversations, Caroline learned to ask “all the great questions of life.” The handsome but sickly Charles graduated from Harvard with Henry Thoreau and was influenced by Joseph Tuckerman’s ministry to the poor. Marrying in 1844, the couple struggled to find their footing as Charles took a series of ministerial jobs, each punctuated by a period of illness. When Charles left Caroline and their two children in 1855 to establish a Unitarian mission in Calcutta, drawn to the Brahmo Samaj and the Indian nationalist cause, his health improved. “Separated by half the earth,” historian Spencer Lavan writes, “their careers began to blossom.” Caroline emerged as a vehement writer and lecturer on abolition, women’s rights, and social science. Bose and Deese will effect a 21st-century reconciliation, putting into conversation a couple whose divergence led to lives of distinctive activism, documented in Caroline’s extensive journals held at the MHS.
Please note, this is an online event held on the video conference platform, Zoom. Registrants will receive an email with links to join the program.