Lydia Maria Child – Abolitionist Novelist


Lydia Maria Child was an American abolitionist, women’s right activist, Native American rights activist, and novelist. She wrote one of the earliest American historical novels, the first comprehensive history of American slavery, and the first comparative history of women. Her literary career began with the publication of her 1824 novel “Hobomok”, A Tale of Early Times, which portrayed an interracial marriage between a white American woman and a Native American Indian man. In 1826, she founded the popular children’s magazine, the Juvenile Miscellany. Lydia Maria Child also spend time on Florence which became a refuge with Frederick Douglass and other abolitionist

In the 1830s, Child joined the Boston abolition movement and published a wide range of works on the rights of African-Americans, Native Americans and women including “An Appeal in Favor of That Class of Americans Called Africans” in 1833, it argued in favor of the immediate emancipation of the slaves without compensation to slaveholders. “The History of the Condition of Women, in Various Ages and Nations” in 1835; and “Evils of Slavery” in 1836.

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Although best known for her antislavery writings, Child evinced an interest in all areas of social reform. Throughout her long career she commented on such issues as Indian rights, equal rights for women, educational reform, and religious toleration. She sacrificed a burgeoning national career in the 1830s by remaining true to her own conscience and becoming one of the first Americans to speak out against the institution of slavery.


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