“Another Emma”: Emma Wedgwood Darwin

February 17, 2012 at 12:26 pm (diaries, history, news) (, , , , , , , , , , )

It is amazing all the websites, books, etc I’ve collected/seen/consulted — and then “forgotten”. It was while putting in the Carlyle Letters (see the Browing Letters post) – for I am very interested in Jane Welsh Carlyle – that I began to cast my mind back: What else had I forgotten I loved??

Then I recalled finding a site with Darwin letters. As you might, however, have guessed, I’m less interested in Charles Darwin and more interested in his wife, Emma. And what did I spot but EMMA Wedgwood / EMMA Darwin’s diaries! How could I have missed those before…

Once you spot such drawings as this one above, you just have to look through them. This is a page from Emma Darwin’s 1840 diary; someone’s costume, or else an idea for herself, must have caught Emma’s eye; the diary evidently a handy place for a quick “scratch”.

Emma Wedgwood (yes, that Wedgwood family!) was born in 1808 — so right in the midst of all the Smith & Gosling children. Her earlist extant diary dates to 1824; she lived, and kept diaries, until 1896. There are a few diaries from the 1830s; fewer holes during the 1840s; and complete runs from then on.

Don’t neglect the printed materials of the diary-series; they can quite be of use to the historian – with things like postal rates, or even when an eclipse is expected. {note: I do not think all beginning/end materials have been included, so savor those which have.} Then there are the unexpected, like this handwritten addendum in 1894 for a “knitted jacket”! Ah, a woman after my own heart…

{a word of advice: Use your browser’s “history” or the back arrow to get back to the index of diaries. “back” will move you back a page in the diary you are viewing}

I am reminded to mention The Darwin Correspondence Project, and also that Emma was a friend of my dear Ellen Tollet (a book I highly recommend).

Was this 1824 diary an 1823 Christmas gift?

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Slowly Building those Blogs

October 3, 2011 at 7:37 pm (books, diaries, history, news) (, , , , , , , , )

Quick note on two new pages — in two new blogs:

My Ladies of Llangollen blog has had the writings of Marion Harland added — check it out

And my newest blog, where I hope to hear about some new books, and (sooner or later) discuss some old books: I call it Georgian Gems, Regency Reads & Victorian Voices — it’s about published history, diaries, letters, biographies — there’s only two books at present. Help me add to it! The “ABOUT” will hopefully fill you in on the types of books you’re likely to find there.

Find more Ellen Tollet here and there

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