Legacy of a Southern Lady: Anna Calhoun Clemson, 1817-1875

Legacy of a Southern Lady: Anna Calhoun Clemson, 1817-1875, by Ann Ratliff Russell (Clemson, SC: Clemson University Press, 2007), xx, 162 pp. Paper. ISBN 978-0-9796066-0-1

Anna Calhoun Clemson was John C. Calhoun's favorite child. After reading Ann Russell's biography based on Anna's letters, one finds it easy to understand why. The product of a famous family and an exceptional woman, Anna was also, as Russell ably demonstrates, very much "a southern lady." Her story--her "life's journey," as Calhoun told his daughter her life would be--gives us a glimpse of an important southern family, of southern womanhood, of heartbreak and difficulty, of a nation torn apart by sectional conflict. Like Mary Chesnut's famous diary, Anna's letters, the crux of Russell's study, provide us with a rich, detailed picture of southern life, both personal and public.

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