Anna Hanson Dorsey (1815-1896)

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Anna Hanson Dorsey (December 12, 1815 - December 26, 1896) wrote poetry, novels, and drama. Her works include May Brook (1856), Oriental Pearl (1857), Warp and Woof (1887), and Palms (1887). She was born in Georgetown and lived her entire life in DC. A convert to Catholicism in 1840, her writing is noted for its Catholic themes. She married Lorenzo Dorsey in 1837, and had four children; her only son was killed while serving in the Union Army during the Civil War. One daughter, Ella Dorsey, also became a writer (of journalism and novels). The University of Notre Dame honored her in 1889 with a Laetare Medal for writing that “illustrates the ideals of the Catholic Church and enriches the heritage of humanity.”

Submitted by Kim Roberts, January 2016.

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