Mary Blood Mellen

19th Century Landscape and Marine Artist

In recent years, Mary Blood Mellen has emerged as one of the most talented women artists in the years immediately preceding the Civil War. She was an American landscape and marine artist who collaborated with her mentor, American Luminist master Fitz Henry Lane. Mellen was one of the few women painters associated with the Hudson River School - a group of artists working in nineteenth-century New England. She is known for her renderings of nostalgic landscapes and seascapes in the Gloucester, Massachusetts area. Research reveals no image of Mellen.

painting by Mary Blood Mellen
Image: Taking in the Sails
By Mary Blood Mellen

Early Life
While information about her life is always somewhat sketchy, Mary Blood Mellen was likely born in 1817 in Sterling, Massachusetts, where she attended a girl's academy and studied painting. Mary showed an early interest and aptitude in art and learned to paint with watercolors at boarding school. In 1840, she married the Reverend Charles Mellen, and the couple lived in Gloucester, Massachusetts. Mellen was a Universalist minister at several Massachusetts churches during his career.


Emeline Hawkins

Slave Who Escaped from Bondage in Maryland

imprisoned for trying to escape from slavery
Image: Exhibit at New Castle Court House Museum
Simulates Sam and Emeline Hawkins in jail in New Castle, Delaware
This exhibit Emeline Hawkins: Her Journey from Slavery to Freedom on the Underground Railroad chronicles the compelling story of Hawkins and her family. They were arrested in the slave state of Delaware while attempting to reach the free state of Pennsylvania.

In 1845, three noted abolitionists guided Emeline Hawkins and her family on their journey along the Underground Railroad. Conductor Samuel Burris led the Hawkins family out of Maryland and into Delaware. Station Masters Thomas Garrett and John Hunn fed and sheltered the family, and aided their escape through the state of Delaware and on to the free state of Pennsylvania.


Tabitha Moffatt Brown

Oregon pioneer and founder of an orphanage

Pioneer, Educator and Founder of Early Oregon Schools

Tabitha Moffatt Brown was an early pioneer on a treachorus journey by wagon train along the Oregon Trail in 1846. She settled with her family in Oregon Country, where she and two reverends founded Tualatin Academy in 1849, and eventually Pacific University in Forest Grove in 1854. In the Oregon State Capitol, 158 names are inscribed in the legislative chambers; only six are women. One of those is Tabitha Moffat Brown.

Early Years
Tabitha Moffatt was born May 1, 1780 in Brimfield, Massachusetts, the daughter of Dr. Joseph Moffatt and Lois Haynes Moffatt. Nothing is known of her childhood. Tabitha married Reverend Clark Brown December 1, 1799, and they had four children - three sons and a daughter: Orus, Manthano, John Mattocks and Pherne (pronounced Ferny). John Mattocks died as a youngster, but the other children survived to adulthood. Reverend Brown died in 1817 and Tabitha taught school to support her family.


Lucy Bakewell Audubon

wife of artist and woodsman John James Audubon

Educator and Wife of John James Audubon

Lucy Bakewell met Frenchman John James Audubon when he came to America in 1803 to oversee his father's estate, Mill Grove, next door to Lucy's family home, Fatland Ford. Audubon was eighteen; Lucy was sixteen, and she might have been jealous of his new passion: American birds. She was educated and physically strong, and she sometimes observed birds in the forest with Audubon.

Image: Lucy Bakewell Audubon in 1831

Early Years
Born January 18, 1787 in England to a wealthy family, Lucy was the daughter of William Bakewell and Lucy Green. The family immigrated to the United States in 1801 and settled on an estate called Fatland Ford near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. John James Audubon spent his childhood largely outdoors in the French countryside. He trained briefly as an artist in Paris and started observing and painting birds. In 1803 Audubon's father sent him to America to oversee the family plantation, Mill Grove, which adjoined the Bakewell estate.


Underground Railroad in Rhode Island

Runaways Escaped to Freedom in Rhode Island

Station on the Underground Railroad
Image: Elizabeth Buffum Chace House
A station on the Underground Railroad
Valley Falls, Rhode Island

The Underground Railroad (UGRR) was a secret system of helping fugitive slaves escape to free states or Canada by hiding them in a succession of private homes by day and moving them farther north by night. In the 1830s, the small state of Rhode Island became increasingly involved in radical abolitionism. They were inspired by William Lloyd Garrison's newspaper, the Liberator, and his call for immediate emancipation. During this period, twenty-five anti-slavery societies were formed in the state.