Memoir of Catharine Brown, a Christian Indian of the Cherokee Nation.
Anderson, Rufus.

Philadelphia: American Sunday School Union, [1832]. Fifth edition, revised. Two editions were published in 1825, followed by one in 1827 and one in 1828. With a full-page illustration on page 27 and 3 additional half-page text illustrations. Some rubbing to boards and extremities. Contemporary ink signature on front pastedown mostly covered by a handwritten late nineteenth century library label. Some foxing and toning throughout. Open tear to top margin of leaf B6, affecting a couple letters, and open tear to lower free endpaper. Overall a very good, tight copy. Original marbled paper boards with brown cloth spine. Sixteenmo. 138 pp. (Item ID: 16716)


Catharine Brown, born K t (1800-1823), was a Cherokee writer and teacher who attended the Brainerd Mission School in the Cherokee Nation near what is now Chattanooga, Tennessee. Brown was well known for her status as the first Cherokee convert to Christianity at the Brainerd School, and her fame grew as her writings were published in periodicals in New England. Brown was one of the most prolific Native writers of the early nineteenth century and arguably the first Native woman to become a published author in the United States. In her introduction to Cherokee Sister: The Collected Writings of Catharine Brown, Theresa Strouth Gaul writes that “Brown is long overdue recognition alongside other Native individuals who crafted public personae in the service of their peoples on the stage provided by early nineteenth-century U.S. print culture. As a woman whose writings gained an audience and held meaning for readers, Brown additionally merits attention along with other American women who employed the genres of life writing,” (Gaul, p. 5). Minister and missionary Rufus Anderson (1796-1888) wrote the Memoir of Catharine Brown shortly after Brown’s death. Brown’s fame during her lifetime fueled the popularity of Anderson’s Memoir, which sold 2,500 copies within six months of its publication; went through several editions in the United States, London, Scotland, and France over the course of the next decade; and continued to be reprinted well into the twentieth century.

Howes, A235. Cherokee Sister: The Collected Writings of Catharine Brown, edited by Theresa Strouth Gaul (University of Nebraska Press, 2014).

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