E. D. E. N. Southworth

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from E.D.E.N. Southworth)
Jump to: navigation, search
E. D. E. N. Southworth
EDEN Southworth c1860-crop.jpg
E. D. E. N. Southworth circa 1860
Born Washington, D.C. Edit this on Wikidata
Occupation Novelist Edit this on Wikidata
Works The Hidden Hand Edit this on Wikidata

Emma Dorothy Eliza Nevitte Southworth (December 26, 1819 – June 30, 1899) was an American writer of more than 60 novels in the latter part of the 19th century. She was the most popular American novelist of her day.[1][2]

Life and career[edit]

Raised in Washington, D. C., Southworth studied in a school kept by her stepfather, Joshua L. Henshaw, and in 1840 married inventor Frederick H. Southworth,[3] of Utica, New York. E.D.E.N. Southworth moved with her husband out to Wisconsin to become a teacher. After 1843, she returned to Washington, D.C. without her husband and with two young children.[4]

She began to write stories to support herself and her children when her husband deserted her in 1844. Her first story, "The Irish Refugee", was published in the Baltimore Saturday Visiter. Some of her earliest works appeared in The National Era, the newspaper that printed Uncle Tom's Cabin. The bulk of her work appeared as a serial in Robert Bonner's New York Ledger,and in 1857 Southworth signed a contract to write exclusively for this publication.[5]

Like her friend Harriet Beecher Stowe, she was a supporter of social change and women's rights, but she was not nearly as active on these issues. Her first novel, Retribution, a serial for the National Era, published in book form in 1846, was so well received that she gave up teaching and became a regular contributor to various periodicals, especially the New York Ledger. She lived in Georgetown, D.C., until 1876, then in Yonkers, New York, and again in Georgetown, D.C., where she died.[6]

Her best known work was The Hidden Hand. It first appeared in serial form in the New York Ledger in 1859, and was serialized twice more (1868–69, 1883) before first appearing in book form in 1888. Robert Bonner, publisher and editor of the "New York Ledger" evidently used the appeal of the novel to "give an occasional boost to his weekly's already massive circulation."[7] It features Capitola Black, a tomboyish antagonist that finds herself in a myriad of adventures. Southworth stated that nearly every adventure of her heroine came from real life. Most of Southworth's novels deal with the Southern United States during the post-American Civil War era. She wrote over sixty; some of them were translated into German, French, Chinese, Icelandic and Spanish; in 1872 an edition of thirty-five volumes was published in Philadelphia.[8]

Her novel Tried for Her Life was referenced in chapter 8 of Jack Finney's novel Time and Again.

Southworth is buried in Washington's Oak Hill Cemetery.[9]


note – most of Southworth's novels were serialized before their publications, sometimes under different titles.

  • Retribution; or The Vale of Shadows: A Tale of Passion (1849)
  • The Deserted Wife (1850)
  • The Mother-in-Law; or The Isle of Rays (1851)
  • Shannondale (1851)
  • Virginia and Magdalene; or The Foster Sisters (1852)
  • The Discarded Daughter; or the Children of the Ilse: A Tale of the Chesapeake (1852)
  • The Curse of Clifton (1852)
  • Old Neighborhoods and New Settlements; or Christmas Evening Legends (1853)
  • The Lost Heiress (1854)
  • The Wife's Victory and Other Nouvellettes (1854)
  • The Missing Bride (1855)
  • Miriam the Avenger (The sequel to The Missing Bride) (1856)
  • The Widow's Son (1856)
  • India: The Pearl of Pearl River (1856)
  • Viva; or The Secret of Power (1857)
  • The Two Sisters (1858)
  • The Lady of the Isle; or, The Island Princess (1859)
  • The Haunted Homestead and Other Nouvellettes (1860)
  • The Gipsy's Prophecy: A Tale of Real Life (1861)
  • Hickory Hall; or The Outcast: A Romance of the Blue Ridge (1861)
  • The Broken Engagement; or, Speaking theTruth for a Day (1862)
  • Love's Labor Won (1862)
  • The Fatal Marriage (1863)
  • The Bridal Eve (1864)
  • Allworth Abbey (1865)
  • The Bride of Llewellyn (1866)
  • The Fortune Seeker; or, The Bridal Day (1866)
  • The Coral Lady; or The Bronzed Beauty of Paris (1867)
  • Fair Play; or The Test of Lone Isle (1868)
  • How He Won Her: A Sequel to Fair Play (1969)
  • The Changed Brides (1869)
  • The Brides Fate: A Sequel to "The Changed Brides" (1869)
  • The Family Doom; or The Sin of a Countess (1869)
  • The Maiden Widow: A Sequel to the "Family Doom" (1870)
  • The Christmas Guest; or The Crime and the Curse (1870)
  • Cruel as the Grave (1871)
  • Tried for Her Life (1871)
  • The Lost Heir of Linlithgow (1872)
  • The Noble Lord: The Sequel to "The Lost Heir of Linlithgow (1872)
  • A Beautiful Fiend; or, Through the Fire (1873)
  • Victor's Triumphs: The Sequel to "A Beautiful Fiend" (1874)
  • Mystery of Dark Hollow (1875)
  • Ishmael; or, In the Depths (1876)
  • Self-Raised; or, From the Depths: A Sequel to "Ishmael." (1876)
  • The Red Hill Tragedy: A Novel (1877)
  • The Bride's Ordeal: A Novel (1877)
  • Her Love or Her Life: A Sequel to "The Bride's Ordeal: A Novel (1877)
  • Sybil Brotherton: A Novel (1879)
  • The Trail of the Serpent; or, The Homicide at Hawke Hall (1880)
  • Why Did He Wed Her? (1881)
  • For Whose Sake? A Sequel to "Why Did He Wed Her?" (1884)
  • A Deed Without a Name (1886)
  • Dorothy Harcourt's Secret: Sequel to a "A Deed Without a Name." (1886)
  • To His Fate: A Sequel to "Dorothy Harcourt's Secret" (no date)
  • When Love Gets Justice: A Sequel "To His Fate." (no date)
  • The Hidden Hand (1888)
  • A Leap in the Dark: A Novel (1889)
  • Unknown; or the Mystery of Raven Rocks (1889)
  • Nearest and Dearest: A Novel (1889)
  • Little Nea's Engagement: A Sequel to "Nearest and Dearest." (1889)
  • For Woman's Love: A Novel (1890)
  • An Unrequited Love: a Sequel to For Woman's Love (1890)
  • The Lost Lady of Lone (1890)
  • The Unloved Wife: A Novel (1890)
  • When the Shadow's Darken: A Sequel to the Unloved Wife (no date)
  • Lilith: A Sequel to "The Unloved Wife" (1891)
  • Gloria: A Novel (1891)
  • David Lindsay: A Sequel to Gloria (1891)
  • "Em": A Novel (1892)
  • Em's Husband (1892)
  • The Mysterious Marriage: A Sequel to "A Leap in the Dark" (1893)
  • A Skeleton in the Closet: A Novel (1893)
  • Brandon Coyle's Wife: A Sequel to "A Skeleton in the Closet" (1893)
  • Only a Girl's Heart: A Novel (1893)
  • The Rejected Bride (1894)
  • Gertrude Haddon (1894)
  • Sweet Love's Atonement: A Novel (1904)
  • Zenobia's Suitors: Sequel to Sweet Love's Atonement (1904)
  • The Struggle of a Soul: A Sequel to "The Lost Lady of Lone" (1904)
  • Her Mother's Secret (1910)
  • Love's Bitterest Cup: A Sequel to Her Mother's Secret" (1910)
  • When Shadow's Die: A Sequel to "Love's Bitterest Cup" (1910)
  • When Love Commands (no date)
  • Fulfilling Her Destiny: A Sequel to When Love Commands (no date)
  • The Initials: A Story of Modern Life (no date)
  • Capitola's Peril: A Sequel to The Hidden Hand (no date)


  1. ^ Mrs. E. D. E. N. Southworth in, Uncle Tom's Cabin and American Culture, Retrieved 7 March 2016
  2. ^ Baym, Nina. E.D.E.N. Southworth's The Hidden Hand, introduction to Oxford Popular Fiction Series edition of The Hidden Hand (1997)
  3. ^ Sutherland, John (2012). Lives of the Novelists: A History of Fiction in 294 Lives. Yale University Press. pp. 135–137. ISBN 978-1846681578. 
  4. ^ Dobson, Joanne. "E.D.E.N. Southworth". Dictionary of Literary Biography. Gale. Retrieved 2014-05-30. 
  5. ^ Dowling, David (2012). Literary Partnerships and Marketplace:. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press. p. 207. 
  6. ^ Dobson, Joanne (1988). Introduction. The Hidden Hand. NJ: Rutgers University Press. 
  7. ^ Looby, Christopher (September 2004). "Southworth and Seriality: The Hidden Hand in the New York Ledger". Nineteenth-Century Literature. 59 (2): 179–211. 
  8. ^ Boyle, Regis Louise (1939). Mrs. E. D. E. N. Southworth. Washington DC: Catholic University Press. 
  9. ^ "Southworth's Gravesite". Southworthiana. Retrieved March 11, 2016. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Bardes, Barbara, and Suzanne Gosset. Declarations of Independence: Women and Political Power in Nineteenth Century American Fiction. New Brunswick: Rutgers UP, 1990.
  • Baym, Nina. Women's Fiction: A Guide to Novels by and about Women in America, 1820- 1870. Ithaca: Cornell UP, 1978.
  • Carpenter, Lynette. "Double Talk: The Power and Glory of Paradox in E. D. E. N. Southworth's The Hidden Hand." Legacy 10.1 (1993): 17-30.
  • Cogan, Francis B. All-American Girl: The Ideal of Real Womanhood in Mid Nineteenth Century America. Athens: U of Georgia P, 1989.
  • Conrad, Susan P. Perish the Thought: Intellectual Women in Romantic America, 1830-1860. New York: Oxford UP, 1976.
  • Coultrap-McQuin, Susan. Doing Literary Business: American Women Writers in the Nineteenth Century. Chapel Hill: U of North Carolina P, 1990.
  • Dobson, Joanne. "The Hidden Hand: Subversion of Cultural Ideology in Three Mid- Nineteenth-Century Women's Novels." American Quarterly 38 (1986): 223-42.-----
  • Ginsberg, Elaine K. "Emma Dorothy Eliza Nevitte Southworth." American Women Writers: A Critical Reference Guide from Colonial Times to the Present. Abridged Edition. New York: Ungar, 1988.
  • Habegger, Alfred. "A Well Hidden Hand." Novel 14 (1981): 197-212.
  • Harris, Susan K. "The House That Hagar Built: House and Heroines in E. D. E. N. Southworth's The Deserted Wife." Legacy 4.2 (1987): 17-29. -----
  • Harris, Susan K. 19th-Century American Women's Novels: Interpretive Strategies. New York: Cambridge UP, 1990.
  • McCandless, Amy Thompson. "Concepts of Patriarchy in the Popular Novels of Antebellum Southern Women." Studies in Popular Culture 10.2 (1987): 1-16.
  • Silverblatt, Arthur Martin. Mrs. E. D. E. N. Southworth and Southern Mythic Society. Diss. Michigan State U, 1980. Ann Arbor: UMI, 1980. 8106442.

External links[edit]