Woman of the Century/Julia Ward Howe
HOWE, Mrs. Julia Ward, poet, author and philanthropist, born in New York City, 27th May, 1819. Her parents were Samuel Ward and Julia Cutler Ward. Her ancestors included the Huguenot Marions, of South Carolina, Governor Samuel Ward, of Rhode Island, and Roger Williams, the apostle of religious tolerance. Her mother died in 1824. Her father, a successful banker, gave her every advantage of education. She was instructed at home by able teachers; her education including music, German, Greek and French. She became the wife of Dr. Samuel G. Howe in 1843. They went abroad and remained avear, and her first child was born in Rome, Italy. Her father died in 1829, and Mrs. Howe became a Unitarian in religion after rallying from the sorrow caused by his death. In youth she had shown her literary trend. At seventeen she published a review of Lamartine's "Jocelyn," an essay on the minor poems of Goethe and Schiller, and a number of original poems. Her marriage interrupted her literary work for a time. In 1850 she went to Europe, and passed the winter in Rome with her two youngest children. In the fall of 1851 she returned to Boston. In 1852 and 1853 she published her first volume of poems, "Passion Flowers," which attracted much attention. In 1851 she published her "Words for the Hour" and a blank- verse drama, which was produced in Wallack's Theater, in New York City, and later in Boston. Her interest in the anti-slavery question dated from 1851. Her third volume, " Later Lyrics, " included her "Battle Hymn of the Republic," which was written in Washington, D. C, in the fall of 1861. Her book, "A Trip to Cuba, " written after her visit to Cuba in 1857, is a prohibited volume on that island. Her prominence during the Civil War was due to her celebrated patriotic songs. Her "John Brown " song was the most popular. It at once became known throughout the country and was sung everywhere. In 1867, with her husband, Mrs. Howe visited Greece, where they won the gratitude of the Greeks for their aid in their struggle for national independence. Her book, "From the Oak to the Olive," was written after her visit to Greece. She has been a profound student of philosophy, and has written numerous essays on philosophical themes. In 1868 she joined the woman suffrage movement. In 1869, before a legislative committee in Boston, she made her first suffrage speech. She has been officially connected from the beginning with the New England, the American and other woman suffrage organizations. Her husband died in 1876, and since that year she has preached, lectured, written and traveled much in all parts of the United States. Her lectures included "Is Polite Society Polite?" "Greece Revisited," and "Reminiscences of Longfellow and Emerson." In 1872 she went to England to lecture on arbitration as a means for settling national and international disputes. In London she held a series of Sunday evening services, devoted to "The JULIA WARD HOWE. Mission of Christianity in Relation to the Pacification of the World." In 1872 she attended, as a delegate, the Congress for Prison Reform held in London. Returning to the United States, she instituted the Women's Peace Festival, which meets on 22nd June each year. Several years ago she went to Europe and spent over two years in travel in England, France, Italy and Palestine. In Paris she was one of the presiding officers of the Woman's Rights Congress in 1878. She lectured in Paris and Athens on the work of the women's associations in America. In Boston she aided to organize the Woman's Club and the Ladies' Saturday Morning Club. In Newport she aided to form the Town and Country Club. She has served as president of the Association for the Advancement of Women for several years. She maintains her connection with these organizations, and is an active promoter of their interests. She is still a vigorous, active woman. In the clubs which she has formed, the members study Latin, French, German, literature, botany, political economy and many other branches. Her life has been and still is one round of ceaseless activity. Her home is in Boston, Mass.