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The Captain's Widow of Sandwich – Self-Invention and the Life of Hannah Rebecca Burgess, 1834-1917 - NYU Press Scholarship Online
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The Captain's Widow of Sandwich: Self-Invention and the Life of Hannah Rebecca Burgess, 1834-1917

Megan Taylor Shockley


In 1852 Hannah Rebecca Crowell married sea captain William Burgess and set sail. Within three years, Rebecca Burgess had crossed the equator eleven times and learned to navigate a vessel. In 1856, 22-year-old Rebecca saved the ship Challenger as her husband lay dying from dysentery. The widow returned to her family's home in Sandwich, Massachusetts, where she refused all marriage proposals and died wealthy in 1917. This is the way Rebecca Burgess recorded her story in her prodigious journals and registers, which she donated to the local historical society upon her death, but there is no other ... More

Keywords: Hannah Rebecca Crowell, William Burgess, Challenger, Sandwich, sea adventures, Victorian woman, gender roles

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2010 Print ISBN-13: 9780814783191
Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016 DOI:10.18574/nyu/9780814783191.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Megan Taylor Shockley, author