Woman of the Century/Celia Laighton Thaxter
THAXTER, Mrs. Celia Laighton, poet, born in Portsmouth. N. H., 29th June. 1835. When she was four years old, her father, Thomas B. Laighton, went to live, with his family, on the Isles of Shoals. The childhood of herself and her two brothers, Oscar and Cedrick, was passed at White Island, where her father kept the lighthouse, which is described by her in her book, "Among the Isles of Shoals." CELIA LAIGHTON THAXTER. All her summers are spent among those islands. In 1851 she became the wife of Levi Lincoln Thaxter, of Watertown, Mass., who died in 1884 She never sought admittance to the field of literature, but the poet, James Russell Lowell, who was at one time editor of the "Atlantic Monthly," happened to see some verses which she had written for her own pleasure, and without saying anything to her about it, christened them "Land-locked " and published them in the "Atlantic." After that she had many calls for her work, and at last, persuaded by the urgent wishes of her friends, John G. Whittier, James T. Fields and others, wrote and published her first volume of poems in 1871, and later the prose work, "Among the Isles of Shoals," which was printed first as a series of papers in the "Atlantic Monthly." Other books have followed. "Driftweed" (1878), "Poems for Children" (1884) and "Cruise of the Mystery, and Other Poems" (1886). Among her best poems are "Courage," "A Tryst," "The Spaniards' Graves at the Isles of Shoals," "The Watch of Boon Island. "The Sandpiper" and "The Song Sparrow."