The American Joan of Arc Goes Insane

Author Adrienne Morris

Firebrand Young Lady Firebrand Young Lady

Do you ever sometimes wish 19th century asylums still existed for those troublesome relatives who make family gatherings so trying?

My great grandmother was sent to an asylumbecause she had lucrative properties in Jersey City, NJ. Her evil daughter (my grandmother’s sister) wanted the brownstones and vacant squares as an early inheritance so she had her mother put away. My great grandfather tried to have her released, but somehow couldn’t, so after his wife committed suicide in the asylum, he did the same.

My grandmother was offered a piece of the inheritance but preferred to live poor as a church mouse with her husband and 9 children a few towns away in a haunted house.

Anna Elizabeth Dickinson (The Joan of Arc of the Union) came from Philadelphia Quaker stock. Her father died when she was two and the family could have used a few Jersey…

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