Author, Religious Figure, Founder of Dominican Order of St. Rose of Lima, Candidate for Sainthood. She was the youngest child of famous American author, Nathaniel Hawthorne and his wife, Sophia Peabody. She had an unhappy marriage to George Parsons Lathrop, assistant editor of Atlantic Monthly. After marriage, the couple converted to Catholicism. Their son, Francis, born in 1876, died five years later. Soon thereafter Rose separated from her husband and moved to New York City, where she trained as a nurse to aid cancer victims. She opened a refuge for cancer victims on New York's Lower East Side. Rose took her vows as a Dominican nun on December 8, 1900, taking the name Sr. Mary Alphonsa. She founded the Dominican Congregation of St. Rose of Lima, later called the Servants of Relief for Incurable Cancer. In 1901, Mother Alphonsa opened Rosary Hill Home in Hawthorne, New York. This is now the motherhouse of the order. She died there on 9 July 1926. Some of her writings include short stories and verse. A book of poems, Along the Shore, was published in 1888. Another work, Memories of Hawthorne, was published in 1897 and monies from that were used to fund her aid to cancer victims. In 2003, with the blessing of Cardinal Egan, Archdiocese of New York, her name became 'venerated' a first step toward sainthood. Currently, her cause for sainthood has been presented to the Vatican.
Bio by: Edmond Spaeth
George Parsons Lathrop