J. L. BELL is a Massachusetts writer who specializes in (among other things) the start of the American Revolution in and around Boston. He is particularly interested in the experiences of children in 1765-75. He has published scholarly papers and popular articles for both children and adults. He was consultant for an episode of History Detectives, and contributed to a display at Minute Man National Historic Park.

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Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Botting on Hannah Mather Crocker in the North End, 12 Jan.

Tomorrow night at 6:00 P.M., the North End Historical Society is hosting Dr. Eileen Botting of the University of Notre Dame, co-editor of Hannah Mather Crocker’s Reminiscences and Traditions of Boston.

Crocker (1752-1829) was a descendant of the famous Mather family, great-granddaughter of Increase and granddaughter of Cotton. She was also a niece of Gov. Thomas Hutchinson, and an eyewitness to the aftermath of the attack on his North End mansion in August 1765.

She inherited the Mather library and published essays on women’s rights, Freemasonry, and other controversial topics. So, naturally, she was labeled a “bluestocking.”

Crocker assembled her local history using those books, public documents, and her own memories, but was never able to get it published. Though known to scholars, the manuscript was never in print until the New England Historic Genealogical Society issued it in a handsome hardcover volume last year.

Botting’s talk and book-signing will take place in Sacred Heart Church Hall at 9 Sun Court Street in the North End. Because there’s limited space, the society asks people to email or call 617-680-3829 to be sure of having a seat reserved.

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