By Natalie Dykstra

ISBN-10: 0618873856

ISBN-13: 9780618873852

The hidden tale of 1 of the main interesting girls of the Gilded Age

Clover Adams, a fiercely clever Boston Brahmin, married at twenty-eight the soon-to-be-eminent American historian Henry Adams. She thrived in her function as an intimate of strength agents in Gilded Age Washington, the place she was once widespread for her wit and style via such luminaries as Henry James, H. H. Richardson, and basic William Tecumseh Sherman. Clover so basically possessed, as one pal wrote, “all she sought after, all this international may perhaps give.”

Yet on the middle of her tale is a haunting secret. Why did Clover, having all started within the spring of 1883 to catch her international vividly via images, finish her lifestyles under 3 years later through consuming a chemical developer she utilized in the darkroom? the most important to the secret lies, as Natalie Dykstra’s looking account makes transparent, in Clover’s pictures themselves.

The aftermath of Clover’s demise is both compelling. Dykstra probes Clover’s enduring acceptance as a lady betrayed. And, so much movingly, she untangles the complicated, poignant — and common — truths of her shining and very unlikely marriage.

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Extra resources for Clover Adams: A Gilded and Heartbreaking Life

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As Taylor himself has deftly shown, the "cavalier" affected the Yankee's conception of the good life in other significant respects. 12 INTRODUCTION few were among the elite. The 100 women were unevenly distributed through New England, more than half (53) living in Massachusetts, more than another quarter (26) in Connecticut, and the remainder divided among Rhode Island, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine. 8 The sources were also considerably more urban than the general population. I am certain that 17 lived on farms, although more probably did.

41-43. 14. Potter, "Growth o f Population," p. 271. "15 A simple and direct correlation between private writing and leisure does not exhaust the question, however: individual inclination is involved. Unmarried women were "unsettled," in the language of the day, and had stronger motives for selfscrutiny-for the examination of their prospects-than did married women who already had made their most significant life-choice. 16 The major source of energy for diary writing in this period, I think, was one somewhat abstracted from circumstances of leisure or marital or wealth status: religion.

3 The norm for an adult woman remained household occupation, which implied dependence on a man's initiating economic activity. Because of its relation to men's provider role in marriage, women's productive work retained a secondary character even when carried outside the home and performed for wages. Thus a historian writing about the cotton-mill system of the early nineteenth century and its female operatives can assert, "it was not their turnover rate but the girls' status as secondary earners that gave the system its distinctive ~ h a r a c t e r .

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Clover Adams: A Gilded and Heartbreaking Life by Natalie Dykstra


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