dee_burris: (Default)
Dee Burris Blakley ([personal profile] dee_burris) wrote2011-01-20 09:18 pm
Entry tags:

I *seriously* love Google Books

Was digging around in my Chapins (there are 635 of them to date), and ran across some information on the net about Mary Williams Chapin (1820-1889), daughter of Oliver Chapin, II and Anna Pierce.

According to what I found, she was a teacher and principal at Mount Holyoke Seminary for many years, prior to her marriage (her first) at age 45 to Claudius Buchanan Pease.

I wondered if that was in a book somewhere. So I checked Google Books.

It was.

One of her students wrote a memorial to her a year after her death, and combined it with a memorial about Mary's own teacher and mentor.

Memorial of Mary W Chapin Pease, by Helen Sarah Norton, (publ. Beacon Press, 1890) has been digitized by Google and is in the public domain.

I spent about an hour paging through it.

The part about her death was particularly poignant to me.


Photobucket

In years past she had repeatedly suffered from pain in her head, yet few of her friends had apprehended danger. During the winter of 1889 her health was unusually good, while her bright and vivacious spirit gave a peculiar charm to her expressive face. In the spring she accompanied Mr. Pease on a trip to Georgia, and about half-past four on Wednesday, May 8, while they were in consultation with their business agent, she suddenly became speechless, and realizing her condition, her eyes filled with tears. A physician was summoned, everything possible done to relieve her suffering was done, but she soon became unconscious, and in the afternoon of Thursday, "peacefully entered into rest." The funeral services were held at the family residence in Somers, Tuesday afternoon, May 14...

If not for the book, all I would have known was that Mary Williams Chapin died in Savannah, GA, and was buried in Somers CT.

And a lot of the humanity would have been lost.