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COLLECTION Identifier: MC 907

Papers of Harriet Goodhue Hosmer, 1777-1981


Hosmer family correspondence, photographs, genealogical information, and research material compiled by Alice Jeannette Ward concerning sculptor Harriet Goodhue Hosmer.


  • Creation: 1777-1981


Language of Materials

Materials in English.

Access Restrictions:

Access. Unrestricted

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright. Copyright in the papers created by Harriet Goodhue Hosmer as well as copyright in other papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns.

Copying. Papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures.


.63 linear feet ((1+1/2 file boxes) plus 7 photograph folders, 1 folio+ folder)

Collection includes family correspondence, autograph and commonplace books, photographs, genealogical information, and research material concerning Harriet Hosmer and her family.


Sculptor and inventor, Harriet Goodhue Hosmer (October 9, 1830 - February 21, 1908), was a native of Watertown, Massachusetts, the daughter of Dr. Hiram and Sarah (Grant) Hosmer. She studied anatomy, and spent much of her life in Rome, where she was at first the pupil of the English sculptor, John Gibson. Hosmer's major works include: The Clasped Hands of Mr. and Mrs. Browning (1853); Medusa (1854); Puck (1856); Beatrice Cenci (1856-1857); Falconnet monument (1858); Fountain of Hylas and the Water Nymphs (1858); Zenobia (1861); Fountain of the Sirens, (1861); Queen of Naples (1868); Fountain of the Mermaid's Cradle (1892); and Queen Isabella (1894). Sometime before her death in 1908, Hosmer returned to Watertown, where she worked to create a perpetual motion machine.

For further information, see Harriet Hosmer, Letters and Memories, edited by Cornelia Crow Carr (1912); Notable American Women (1971); and Hosmeriana: A Guide to Works by and about Harriet G. Hosmer, by Joseph L. Curran (1975).

Alice Jeannette Ward taught fourth grade at the Hosmer School in Watertown, Masschusetts, and was interested in local history. She collected manuscript material pertaining to the Hosmer family as part of her research into the life of Harriet Hosmer.

Physical Location

Collection stored off site: researchers must request access 36 hours before use.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Accession numbers: 83-M127, 97-M158, 2003-M31

These papers of Harriet Goodhue Hosmer were given to the Schlesinger Library by Alice Ward and her estate between June 1983 and March 2003.

Related Material:

There is related material at the Schlesinger Library; see Additional papers of Harriet Goodhue Hosmer, 1848-1915 (MC 1232); Harriet Goodhue Hosmer Papers, 1834-1959 (A-162; M60); Letter from Harriet Goodhue Hosmer, undated (A/H827); Letter from Harriet Goodhue Hosmer to Annie Adams Fields, undated (A/H827a); Letters from Harriet Hosmer to Lydia Avery Coonley, 1889-1897 (A/H827b); Letters from Harriet Hosmer to Lydia Maria Child, 1855-1865 (A/H827c); Letters from Harriet Goodhue Hosmer, ca.1865, 1895 (A/H827d).


Donor: Alice Ward

Accession numbers: 83-M127--2003-M31

Processed by: Anne Engelhart

The following items have been transferred to the Schlesinger Library books and printed materials collection:

  1. Further Records of Frances Ann Kemble, by Frances Ann Kemble. New York: Henry Holt and Co., 1891
  2. Fanny Kemble, by Margaret Armstrong. New York: Macmillan Co., 1938
  3. Fanny Kemble, by Dorothie Bobbe. New York: Minton, Balch and Co., 1931
  4. Harriet Hosmer Letters and Memories, edited by Cornelia Carr. New York: Moffat, Yard and Co., 1912
  5. The Literary Sculptors, by Margaret Farrand Thorp. Durham, North Carolina: Duke University Press, 1965
  6. The Brownings, by Lillian Whiting. Boston: Little, Brown, and Co., 1911
  7. The Flowering of New England, 1815-1865, by Van Wyck Brooks. E.P. Dutton, 1937
  8. A History of Walpole, New Hampshire, by Martha McDanolds Frizzell, 2 volumes. Walpole: Walpole Historical Society, 1963.
  9. Roba di Roma, by William W. Story. London: Chapman and Hall, 1871
  10. Roba di Roma, by William Wetmore Story, 2 volumes. Boston: Houghton, Mifflin and Co., 1887
  11. Anna Jameson, by Mrs. Steuart Erskine. London: T. Fisher Unwin, Ltd., [1915]
  12. Historical sketches of Watertown, Massachusetts, by Solon F. Whitney. Watertown, Massachusetts, 1893
  13. Dainty Dames of Society, by W. Willmott Dixon. London: Adam & Charles Black, 1903
  14. The Bellows Genealogy, by Thomas Bellows Peck. Keene, New Hampshire: Sentinel Printing, 1898
  15. Kate Field, a Record, by Lillian Whiting. Boston: Little, Brown, and Co., 1899
  16. Life, Letters, and Journals of George Ticknor, 2 volumes. Boston: Houghton, Mifflin Co., 1880
  17. Records of a Girlhood, by Frances Ann Kemble. New York: Henry Holt and Co., 1884
  18. Records of a Later Life, by Frances Ann Kemble. New York: Henry Holt and Co., 1883
  19. The Story of My Life, by Augustus J.C. Hare, 4 volumes. New York, Dodd, Mead, and Co., 1896
  20. Great Little Watertown, 1630-1930, by G. Frederick Robinson and Ruth Robinson Wheeler. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Riverside Press, 1930

Processing Information

Processed: March 2017

By: Anne Engelhart

Updated and additional description added: March 2023

By: Cat Lea Holbrook

The Schlesinger Library attempts to provide a basic level of preservation and access for all collections, and does more extensive processing of higher priority collections as time and resources permit.  Finding aids may be updated periodically to account for new acquisitions to the collection and/or revisions in arrangement and description.

Hosmer, Harriet Goodhue, 1830-1908. Papers of Harriet Goodhue Hosmer, 1777-1981: A Finding Aid
Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute Repository

The preeminent research library on the history of women in the United States, the Schlesinger Library documents women's lives from the past and present for the future. In addition to its traditional strengths in the history of feminisms, women’s health, and women’s activism, the Schlesinger collections document the intersectional workings of race and ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and class in American history.

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