"It is strange that the spot of earth where we were born should make such a difference to us… If I had opened my eyes upon this planet elsewhere than in this northeast corner of Massachusetts, elsewhere than on this green rocky strip of shore between Beverly Bridge and the Misery Islands, it seems to me as if I must have been somebody else, and not myself."
In this quote from the autobiography of her childhood, A NEW ENGLAND GIRLHOOD, Lucy Larcom remembers the town of Beverly, Massachusetts, where she was born, May 15, 1824. Her father, Benjamin, was a sea captain who died when Lucy was 11 years old. Lucy's mother Lois, moved the family to the mill city of Lowell, Massachusetts, where Lucy got a job in the Lowell textile mills. Lucy and her sisters wrote for and co-edited the Lowell Offering, a literary magazine by and for the mill workers. At age 22, she moved to St. Louis with her sister Emeline Larcom Spaulding and her husband Rev. George Spaulding. Lucy took a teaching job in Illinois, and after graduating in 1852 from the Monticello Female Seminary in Godfrey, Illinois, she returned to Massachusetts and took a position teaching English literature at Wheaton College, in Norton, Massachusetts. She began publishing her poems, and was a protégé of John Greenleaf Whittier. She died in Boston, Massachusetts, April 17, 1893 and was buried in her home town of Beverly.