An extraordinary 19th Century Long Island woman will be the topic of the Reboli Center for Art and History’s July Third Friday series. Author Tricia Foley’s latest book, Mary L. Booth: The Story of an Extraordinary 19th-Century Woman, tells the astonishing story. The book, the result of many years of research, reveals an incredible life story of a truly accomplished woman from her birth in Yaphank to her adolescence in Brooklyn, through the Civil War, to the international publishing world during the Gilded Age. Upon her death in 1889 the Brooklyn Eagle wrote “…she must be ranked as one of the most extraordinary women of the century...”
Mary Louise Booth was born in Yaphank, New York in 1831 and went on to become one of the most prominent women of 19th century America. Her career was filled with achievements. In 1855 she was elected secretary of the Women’s Rights Convention. The treasurer of that convention was Susan B. Anthony, and together they fought for women’s rights, including the right to vote. In 1857 Booth became one of the first female journalists for the New York Times. Her History of the City of New York, published in 1859, put her on the map in the publishing world. During the Civil War she translated the works of eminent French writers who wrote about abolition and reconstruction. The translations were recognized by President Abraham Lincoln as significant in providing inspiration and instruction for the Union cause. In 1867 she was named editor of Harper’s Bazaar and held that position for 22 years.
Ms. Foley is a well-known writer, designer, and a Yaphank Historical Society Historian and Trustee. She has authored 10 design/lifestyle books and her design work has been featured nationally and internationally in magazines. Recently she has been putting her design experience to work on historic preservation projects and 19th century house restoration. Ms. Foley’s book about Mary L. Booth will be available to purchase.