Chapter

Childhood and Early Adulthood “A happy, light-hearted schoolgirl”

Linda O. McMurry

in To Keep the Waters Troubled

Published in print December 2000 | ISBN: 9780195139273
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199848911 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195139273.003.0001
Childhood and Early Adulthood “A happy, light-hearted schoolgirl”

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This chapter describes Ida B. Wells's childhood and early adulthood. Ida was born in Holly Springs, Mississippi, to James Wells and Elizabeth Warrenton on July 16, 1862. James was the only son of his master, and his mother, Peggy, a slave. After emancipation, James legalized his marriage. The Wells family continued to grow in the years following the war, and eventually Ida had four brothers and three sisters. Ida began school at such an early age that she could not remember when or where she started. When Ida reached her teens, she enrolled at Shaw University, where she was greatly influenced by the missionary spirit of the school. After the tragic death of her parents to yellow fever, Wells took charge of herself and her younger siblings, supporting them by teaching.

Keywords: Mississippi; James Wells; Elizabeth Warrenton; Peggy; Shaw University

Chapter.  6088 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of the Americas

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