12-22-1823

Thomas Wentworth Higginson

THOMAS WENTWORTH HIGGINSON, American minister, novelist, abolitionist and soldier was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts (d: 1911); A descendant of Francis Higginson, a Puritan minister and emigrant to the colony of Massachusetts Bay, he was a grandson of Stephen Higginson, a member of the Continental Congress, and a distant cousin of Henry Lee Higginson, founder of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. And he was in love with William Henry Hurlbert, a southern beauty of whom he confessed “I never loved but one male friend with a passion. He is like some fascinating girl.” He modeled the hero of his novel Malbone (1869) after Hurlbert. Higginson is also remembered as a correspondent and literary mentor to Emily Dickinson.