Sarah Chauncey Woolsey (1835 - 1905)

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Nicknames: "Susan Coolidge"
Birthplace: Cleveland, Ohio
Death: Died
Managed by: Doug Robinson
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Sarah Chauncey Woolsey

Sarah Chauncey Woolsey (January 29, 1835 – April 9, 1905) was an American children's author who wrote under the pen name Susan Coolidge.


Woolsey was born January 29, 1835 into the wealthy, influential New England Dwight family in Cleveland, Ohio. Her father was John Mumford Woolsey (1796–1870) and mother was Jane Andrews. She spent much of her childhood in New Haven Connecticut after her family moved there in 1852.

Woolsey worked as a nurse during the American Civil War (1861–1865), after which she started to write. The niece of the author and poet Gamel Woolsey, she never married, and resided at her family home in Newport, Rhode Island, until her death. She edited The Autobiography and Correspondence of Mrs. Delaney (1879) and The Diary and Letters of Frances Burney (1880). She is best known, however, for her classic children's novel What Katy Did (1872). The fictional Carr family was modeled after the author's own, with Katy Carr inspired by Susan (Sarah) herself, and the brothers and sisters modeled on Coolidge's four younger Woolsey siblings. They were: Jane Andrews Woolsey was born October 25, 1836 and married Reverend Henry Albert Yardley. Elizabeth Dwight Woolsey was born April 24, 1838, married ♥ Daniel Coit Gilman and died in 1910. Theodora Walton Woolsey was born September 7, 1840. William Walton Woolsey was born July 18, 1842 and married Catherine Buckingham Convers, daughter of Charles Cleveland Convers.

Note: the wikipedia link provides a list of her Works.

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Susan Coolidge's Timeline

January 29, 1835
Cleveland, Ohio
April 9, 1905
Age 70