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The Captain's Widow of SandwichSelf-Invention and the Life of Hannah Rebecca Burgess, 1834-1917$
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Megan Taylor Shockley

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780814783191

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814783191.001.0001

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(p.185) Conclusion
The Captain's Widow of Sandwich

Megan Taylor Shockley

NYU Press

This concluding chapter offers some reflections on the overall veracity of Rebecca's story, and positions her as a historical figure amid a dramatic wave of change occurring in the nineteenth century. Rebecca worked hard to create a legacy that linked her maritime experiences with her Victorian persona. She was not unlike thousands of Victorian middle-class women, but what makes her special is not whether she saved a ship in peril; it is that she crafted her own public narrative in a way that ensured her legacy after her death. The chapter argues that Rebecca's carefully crafted identity does not detract from the overall remarkable situation of her life and her attempts to create historical legacy. In fact, it reveals her determination to be remembered as a genteel sea captain's wife, the link to a time long gone in Sandwich and Bourne by the twentieth century.

Keywords:   Victorian persona, maritime experiences, Sandwich, public narrative, Rebecca's legacy, Rebecca's identity, historical legacy

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