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The Amherst Historical Society will hold its annual meeting this coming Sunday, February 11th at 2:00pm at the Munson Library in South Amherst. The brief business meeting will be followed immediately by a talk entitled: The Transcendentalists’ Call: Mabel Loomis Todd, the Thoreaus, and Emily Dickinson.
To the extent that she is remembered today outside of Amherst, Mabel Loomis Todd (1856-1932) is principally known for one of two things: editing the poetry of Emily Dickinson, or her thirteen-year-long affair with Emily’s older brother, Austin. But Mabel was more than just Emily’s editor or Austin’s lover. She was a writer, a poet, an artist, a civic activist, a world traveler, and, as it turned out, an ardent environmentalist. Perhaps nothing influenced Mabel more than real and perceived inspiration of the Thoreau family. Biographer and Tufts professor Julie Dobrow will speak about the many ways in which Mabel would feel the Transcendentalists’ call, and how it profoundly affected her life and her work.