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Books about 19th Century American Women Authors

19th Century American Woman Authors

This page has links to two groups of works covering women authors of the 19th century. The first group has works by or about women authors and poets around the U.S. Second are works about authors, male and female, from the Great Lakes states, many of whom wrote about the region. Entries for these are found on other pages of this site, as shown.

Women Authors throughout the U.S.

Our Famous Women. An Authorized Record of the Lives and Deeds of Distinguished American Women of our Times …

an Entirely New Work, Full of Romantic Story, Lively Humor, Thrilling Experiences, Tender Pathos, and Brilliant Wit, with Numerous Anecdotes, Incidents, and Personal Reminiscences by the following Twenty Eminent Authors: (authors listed below) superbly illustrated with full-page portraits mainly from photographs taken expressly for this work, and fine full-page engravings from original designs by Mr. T. W. Williams

Hartford, CT: Hartford 1888

Elizabeth Stuart Phelps – Harriet Beecher Stowe – Rose Terry Cooke – Mary A. Livermore – Harriet Prescott Spofford – Marion Harland – Mary Clemmer – Louise Chandler Moulton – Mrs. A. D. T. Whitney – Lucy Larcom – Julia Ward Howe – Susan Coolidge – Kate Sanborn – Elizabeth Cady Stanton – Lucia Gilbert Runkle – Laura Curtis Bullard – Lilian Whiting – Elizabeth T. Spring – Elizabeth Bryant Johnston – Maud Howe

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Our Famous Women. Comprising the Lives and Deeds of American Women who have Distinguished themselves in Literature, Science, Art, Music, and the Drama …

or are Famous as Heroines, Patriots, Orators, Educators, Physcians, Philanthropists, etc. with Numerous Anecdotes, Incidents, and Personal Experiences. By the following twenty Authors: (authors listed below) superbly illustrated with full-page portraits mainly from photographs taken expressly for this work

Hartford, CT: Worthington 1883

Harriet Beecher Stowe – Rose Terry Cooke- Harriet Prescott Spofford – Elizabeth Stuart Phelps – Mrs. A. D. T. Whitney – Mary A. Livermore – Lucia Gilbert Runkle – Marion Harland – Mary Clemmer – Kate Sanborn – Louise Chandler Moulton – Lucy Larcom – Julia Ward Howe – Susan Coolidge – Elizabeth Cady Stanton – Laura Curtis Bullard – Lilian Whiting – Elizabeth T. Spring – Elizabeth Bryant Johnston – Maud Howe

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American Women Writers: A Critical Reference Guide from Colonial Times to the Present

Faust, Langdon Lynne, ed.
NY: Ungar 1988

This is an abridged edition (over 900 pages) of a multi-volume set. Contains entries averaging 2 pages for each woman writer, authored by many scholars.

The Female Poets of America

Griswold, Rufus Wilmont
NY: Miller 1874

This was first published in 1848, and contains a selection of poems from each of over 100 poets from the 1840s and before. Every writer is introduced with biographical information and Griswold’s comments about their work. Many of these poets were also popular prose writers.

Women Authors of our Day in their Homes; Personal Descriptions & Interviews

Halsey, Francis Whiting, ed.
NY: James Pott 1903

This has 27 authors, mostly living in New York and Massachusetts. There are photos of the homes of several.

Little Pilgrimages Among the Women who have Written Famous Books

Harkins, E. F. and C. H. L. Johnston
Boston: L. C. Page 1902

There are 21 American writers represented here. Portraits are included.

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American Women Prose Writers, 1870-1920

Harris, Sharon M., ed.
Bruccoli Clark Layman 2000

Vol. 221 in the series “Dictionary of Literary Biography”. Contains entries for about 50 women prose writers, written by a variety of scholars.

The Female Prose Writers of America. With Portraits, Biographical Notices, and Specimens of their Writings

Hart, John S.
Philadelphia: Butler 1855

About 60 writers are represented here. Each writer is introduced with a brief biography and some information about the main works they have published, followed by a few pages of selections from one or two of their works.

See our Literature Guides & Author Bibliographies

The Woman’s Story, as Told by Twenty American Women; with Portraits and Sketches of the Authors

Holloway, Laura C. (Laura Carter)
NY: Alden 1889

“The woman’s story as told by twenty American women is a composite picture of the representative fiction work of the female writers of the republic. It is one which depicts the types and characteristics of people who unitedly compose our young nation.” “The compilation represents the field of fiction, from the appearance of the first great American novel to the present day.”
– from the editor’s Preface. Authors included are:

Harriet Beecher Stowe – Harriet Prescott Spofford – Rebecca Harding Davis – Edna Dean Proctor – Maritta Holley – Nora Perry – Augusta Evans Wilson – Louise Chandler Moulton – Celia Thaxter – Mrs. Sara J. Lippincott – Abba Gould Woolson – Mary J. Holmes – Margaret E. Sangster – Olive Thorne Miller – Elizabeth W. Champney – Julia C. R. Dorr – Marion Harland – Louisa May Alcott – Ella Wheeler Wilcox – Rose Terry Cooke

The Female Poets of America. With Portraits, Biographical Notices, and Specimens of their Writings

Read, Thomas Buchanan
Philadelphia: Butler 1851

This was first published in 1848. Over 80 poets are included, usually with one or two poems each and very brief biographical info.

See our Books of Literary Criticism

Afro-American Women Writers 1746-1933: An Anthology and Critical Guide

Shockley, Ann Allen
Meridian 1988

“From Colonial days to the Great Depression, the voices of America’s black women writers spoke of their defiance, their dreams, and their world despite the constraints of race, sex, class, and slavery. This groundbreaking anthology brings to print forty-one of these women – their lives as well as their works.” – Book cover

See the Directory of all Fiction on Century Past

American Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century: An Anthology

Walker, Cheryl, ed.
Rutgers Univ. 1992

Contains a selection of poems written by each of the following women: Lydia Sigourney, Maria Gowen Brooks, Sarah Helen Whitman, Elizabeth Oakes-Smith, Emma Embury, Lucretia Davidson, Frances Sargent Osgood, Anne Lynch Botta, Julia Ward Howe, Alice Cary, Maria White Lowell, Phoebe Cary, Lucy Larcom, Frances Harper, Rose Terry Cooke, Helen Hunt Jackson, Celia Thaxter, Mary Tucker Lambert, Adah Isaacs Menken, Ina Coolbrith, Emma Lazarus, Ella Wheeler Wilcox, Henrietta Cordelia Ray, Edith M. Thomas, Lizette Woodworth Reese, Louise Imogen Guiney, Mary Weston Fordham.

Authors of the Great Lakes States

Great Lakes Cultural History page

Venable, William H., Beginnings of Literary Culture in the Ohio Valley; Historical and Biographical Sketches (1891)
See Chapter 9, “Pioneer Poets and Story-Writers“, p. 267; Chapter 16 “Amelia Welby“, p. 471; Chapter 17 “Alice Cary“, p. 482.

See our Great Lakes Fiction page

Illinois Cultural History page

Report of the Illinois Woman’s Exposition Board, from 1891 to 1894 (1895)

See our Illinois Fiction page

Indiana Cultural History page

Parker, Benjamin S. and Heiney, Enos B., comp. and ed., Poets and Poetry of Indiana; a representative collection of the poetry of Indiana during the first hundred years of its history as territory and state, 1800 to 1900 (1900)

Rice, Alonzo, ed., Some Indiana Writers and Poets (1908)

Skelcher, Lucille Detraz and Jane Lucille Skelcher, “Julia L. Dumont of Vevay” (1938)

See our Novels from Indiana

Michigan Cultural History page

Goodrich, Madge Vriehuis, A Bibliography of Michigan Authors (1928)

See our Novels from Michigan

Ohio Biographies & Memoirs page

Stowe, Harriet Beecher, Life of Harriet Beecher Stowe: compiled from her letters and journals (1889)

Ohio Cultural History page

Coggeshall, William Turner, The Poets and Poetry of the West: with Biographical and Critical Notices (1864)

Coyle, William, ed., Ohio Authors and Their Books. Biographical Data and Selective Bibliographies for Ohio Authors, Native and Resident, 1796-1950 (1962)

See our collection of Short Stories PDF Free

Hatcher, Harlan, “Among Ohio Writers” in The Buckeye Country: a Pageant of Ohio (1947)

Venable, William Henry, Ohio Literary Men and Women; an Address Prepared for the Ohio Centennial Celebration (1904)

See our Ohio Fiction page

Wisconsin Cultural History page

Rounds, Charles Ralph, and Hippensteel, Henry Sherman, eds., Wisconsin in Story and Song; Selections from the Prose and Poetry of Badger State Writers (1916)

See our Wisconsin Novels

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