Open main menu

TODD, Mrs. Letitia Willey, poet, born in Tolland, Conn., in February, 1835. LETITIA WILLEY TODD A woman of the century (page 727 crop).jpgLETITIA WILLEY TODD. Her father, Calvin Willey, was a lawyer of marked ability. In the early part of this century he took an active part in public life, filling with efficiency many prominent positions. In 1823 he was a member of the United States Senate. Among his colleagues were Henry Clay, Daniel Webster and John Randolph. At that time Mr. Willey formed many friendships, which extended through his long and honorable life. Letitia was his amanuensis for several years, and as her father continued his correspondence with the friends of earlier days, she derived no little benefit, as well as pleasure, from the opportunity thus afforded her. From childhood she spent much time with him in his library, and she never tired of hearing him relate incidents connected with his life in Washington. At an early age she showed literary tastes. In 1847 her first published poem was printed in the Hartford "Times." Subsequently, in periodicals then in circulation, poems and short stories from her pen appeared under the pen-name "Alice Afton," and still later "Enola." Under the latter a poem, "Lines Written on Reading the Life of Kossuth," appeared in print soon after his visit to this country. It excited considerable comment of an encouraging nature to the author, and for a few years her pen was busy. In 1857 she became the wife of Sereno B. Todd, of North Haven, Conn. Mr. Todd is a descendant of the Yale family, of which Elihu Yale, the founder of Yale College, was a member. They have two children, a son and a daughter.