Most people know that Mary Lyon has a connection to Wheaton College, but did you know that she helped establish Wheaton Seminary while she was launching her own campaign for Mount Holyoke?
Talk about multitasking…
“A prosperous citizen of Norton, Massachusetts, Judge Laban Wheaton, resolved to build a memorial to his only daughter, who died March 1834, and was persuaded by his daughter-in-law to make it not a statue but a first-rate school for girls. Since Judge Wheaton was then 80, the detailed planning was handled mainly by his son and daughter-in-law, who sought Mary Lyon’s advice on all sorts of matters. Whether it was a copy of her first appeal, issued in February 1834, that made the initial contact is not recorded. All parties must soon have discovered that Mary Lyon’s own project has too many unusual features to be absorbed by the Wheatons but that her judgement of people and her skills of organization were highly valued” (Green, 1979, pp. 162-3).
FebruMary facts come from the book Mary Lyon and Mount Holyoke, Opening the Gates, by Elizabeth Alden Green.
Green, E. A. (1979). Mary Lyon and Mount Holyoke: Opening the gates. Hanover, N.H: University Press of New England.