Orchard House 2004 Summer Conversational Series
Intensive Workshop

“Work is My Salvation …”
Women & Work in the 19th Century

Louisa May Alcott. Writer/Reformer


Amy Beach, Musician/Composer


Session I - Monday, July 12th
9:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

Topics: Overview; Lowell Mill Girls; Medicine and Nursing; Hospital Sketches

Session II - Tuesday, July 13th
9:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

Topics: Women Artists; Catharine Beecher; Olympia Brown; Book Discussion Group on Louisa May Alcott’s Work

Session III - Wednesday, July 14th
9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Topics: Labor Pains: Emerson, Hawthorne and Alcott on Work and the Woman Question; The Alcott Women at Work

Workshop Registration Form

Schedule of Events

Maria Mitchell,

The Grimké Sisters,
Social Reformers

Catharine Beecher, Educator/Reformer


Olympia Brown, Minister


Our Guest Presenters …

Dawn Adiletta
" Working Towards Respectability and Independence-
The Career of Catharine E. Beecher”

Curator-Harriet Beecher Stowe Center (Hartford, CT); Specialties-Harriet Beecher Stowe, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, New England quilts, 19th C. American life; Frequent museum consultant/lecturer; Board Member National Collaborative for Women’s History Sites, Committee for the New England Bibliography, Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation

Sandra “Sam” Brzoza
“ Have Lamp, Will Travel -
Nursing in the 19th Century”

Director of Nursing-Rochester (NY) General Hospital; Recipient-VanNeil Clark Award for Excellence in Nursing, Muller Teaching Excellence Award, Geriatric Nurse Expert Award; Board Member-The Baker Cedarberg Museum and Archives

Carolyn R. Maibor
“ Labor Pains:
Emerson, Hawthorne and Alcott on Work and the Woman Question”

Assistant Professor of English-Framingham State College; Ph.D.-Brandeis University; Author-Labor Pains: Emerson, Hawthorne, and Alcott on Work and the Woman Question; Recipient-Phenomenal Woman Award; Director-V-Day College Campaign; Panel Chair-New York Conference on Language and Literature

Laurie Carter Noble
“ Melting Mountains of Ice:
Olympia Brown’s Journey to Ministry”

Founding Member-Unitarian Universalist Women's Heritage Society; Writer and social justice activist; Writing Instructor-Villanova University, Bryn Mawr College, American Management Association, Boston Center for Adult Education; Feature Columnist-The Back Bay Courant; Editorial consultant-Standing Before Us: Unitarian Universalist Women and Social Reform, 1776-1936; Editor-A Modern Pioneer (Rev. Violet Kochendoerfer autobiography)

Michael Pierson
“ Women and Work in Louisa May Alcott’s Hospital Sketches”

Assistant Professor of History-UMASS Lowell; Ph.D.-State University of New York at Binghamton; Research specialty-Antislavery politics; Author-Free Hearts and Free Homes: Gender and American Antislavery Politics from the “Gender and American Culture Series” (University of North Carolina Press)

Melissa MacFarland Pennell
“ Living by the Clock and The Bell:
Female Operatives in Lowell, Massachusetts”

Professor of English/Coordinator of American Studies-UMASS Lowell; Research specialty-19th C. American literature and culture; Author-The Student Companion to Nathaniel Hawthorne and The Student Companion to Edith Wharton; Co-author-American Literary Mentors; Contributor-The Louisa May Alcott Encyclopedia; Currently writing-Masterpieces of American Romanticism; Frequent presenter/coordinator-The School of Philosophy Series

Kathryn Tomasek
“ Varieties of Women’s Work in the Nineteenth Century United States”

Associate Professor of History at Wheaton College (Norton, MA);
Ph.D.- University of Wisconsin, Madison; Research interests: Women and the public sphere, women and work, utopian and communitarian societies; Currently completing a manuscript on women in the Fourierist movement in the United States in the 1840s

Sarah Wider
“ Women Working in the Arts”

Professor of English-Colgate University; Specialty-19th C. American literature, contemporary Native American literature; Author-Anna Tilden: Unitarian Culture and the Problem of Self-Representation and The Critical Reception of Emerson: Unsettling All Things; Currently researching-Late 19th/Early 20th C. women writers, artists, and activists who took Thoreau’s and Emerson’s work as central elements in their intellectual platforms

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