A novelist and prolific writer, Catharine Marie Sedgwick (1789 -1867) wrote about Mumbet and much of what we know about Mumbet is because of Catharine. Catharine was the daughter of Theodore Sedgwick and lived in the same household Mumbet served after leaving the Ashley House. Catharine is buried next to Mumbet in the “Sedgwick Pie.” Her brother Charles, who wrote Mumbet’s epitaph lies on Miss Sedgwick’s other side. Miss Sedgwick was born in Stockbridge, MA and later attended Payne’s Finishing School in Boston. According to Professor Lucinda Damon-Bach, Ph.D. English Department, Salem State College, and Founder of the Catharine Maria Sedgwick Society, upon her return to the Berkshires Catharine helped her sister-law run a school in Lenox, Massachusetts on Kemble Street on the site of what is now Springlawn at the National Music Foundation but spent most of her time writing. Professor Damon-Bach also says that Catharine “was one of the Sedgwick children who gave Mumbet her nickname,” and that Mumbet was the children’s substitute mother.
Links and References to Catharine Maria Sedgwick
• “Mumbett” (manuscript draft), by Catharine Maria Sedgwick, 1853, Massachusetts Historical Society
• You may read what Catharine wrote about Mumbet at Shay’s Rebellion.
• Wikipedia on CMS
• Catharine Maria Sedgwick: Critical Perspectives
Journal article by Cheri Louise Ross; Legacy: A Journal of American Women Writers, Vol. 21, 2004
• Periodizing Authorship, Characterizing Genre: Catharine Maria Sedgwick’s Benevolent Literacy Narratives
American Literature – Volume 76, Number 1, March 2004, pp. 1-29, Robbins, Sarah.
• Science in Catharine Maria Sedgwick’s Hope Leslie Legacy
Volume 20, Number 1&2, 2003, pp. 22-37, Block, Shelley R. Madden, Etta M., 1962
• Catharine Maria Sedgwick Society
• Slavery in New England (1853), Complete Transcript, EPUB,
• Our Burial Place (1853)
• Clarence: or, A Tale of Our Times(1830)
• Didactic Tales: Home: Scenes and Characters Illustrating Christian Truth (1835)
• Live and Let Live: or, Domestic Service (1837)
• Tales and Sketches, Second Series (1844)
• Washington State University Listing of CMS
Catharine Marie Sedgwick was a prolific writer which you can review on our books page.
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