Hall, Anna Maria (1800–1881)

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Hall, Anna Maria (1800–1881)

Irish author. Name variations: Mrs. S.C. Hall. Born Anna Maria Fielding on January 6, 1800, in Dublin, Ireland; died on January 30, 1881, in East Moulsey, Surrey, England; married Samuel Carter Hall, in 1824.

Anna Maria Hall was born in Dublin in 1800. Her father died while she was still young, and she moved to England with her mother when she was 15. At 24, Anna married Samuel Carter Hall, a journalist and editor. She published her first short story when she was 29 and followed that with a collection of stories, Sketches of Irish Character (1829). Her themes consistently focused on Irish life, yet her work was not popular in her native land because she refused to take political sides. Hall wrote a total of nine novels, including The Buccaneer (1832), Marian: or A Young Maid's Fortunes (1840), Light and Shadows of Irish Character (1838), The White Boy (1845), and Can Wrong be Right? (1862). She also published two plays, Tales of the Irish Peasantry (1840) and Midsummer Eve, a Fairy Tale of Love (1848). Hall collaborated with her husband on several works, and she contributed to New Monthly Magazine and the Art Union Journal, both edited by her husband. She also edited Sharpe's London Magazine and St. James's Magazine from 1862 to 1863.

Hall was an industrious worker and a philanthropist, helping to found several benevolent institutions including the Brompton Consumption Hospital, The Governesses' Institution, the Home for Decayed Gentlewomen and the Nightingale Fund. She was also active in temperance and women's rights movements. In 1868, she received a civil pension in the amount of £100 a year. She died on January 30, 1881, in East Moulsey, Surrey, at age 81.

Judith C. Reveal , freelance writer, Greensboro, Maryland

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