Charlotte Forten Grimke

(1837-1914 / the United States)

Charlotte Forten Grimke
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Charlotte Louise [citation needed] Bridges Forten Grimké (17 August 1837 – July 23, 1914) was an African-American anti-slavery activist, poet, and educator.

Forten was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to Mary Woods and Robert Bridges Forten, members of the prominent black Forten-Purvis families of Philadelphia. Robert Forten and his brother-in-law Robert Purvis were abolitionists and members of the Philadelphia Vigilant Committee, an anti-slavery network that rendered assistance to escaped slaves. Forten's paternal aunt Margaretta Forten worked in the Philadelphia Female Anti-Slavery Society along with her sisters Harriet Forten Purvis and Sarah Louisa Forten Purvis. Forten's ... more »

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Best Poem of Charlotte Forten Grimke


Poet of the serene and thoughtful lay!
In youth's fair dawn, when the soul, still untried,
Longs for life's conflict, and seeks restlessly
Food for its cravings in the stirring songs,
The thrilling strains of more impassioned bards;
Or, eager for fresh joys, culls with delight
The flowers that bloom in fancy's fairy realm
We may not prize the mild and steadfast ray
That streams from thy pure soul in tranquil song
But, in our riper years, when through the heat
And burden of the day we struggle on,
Breasting the stream upon whose shores we dreamed,
Weary of ...

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