Ellen, The Teacher

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Mrs. (Barbara) Hofland’s Ellen, The Teacher, a Tale for Youth was published by W. B. Gilley of New York in 1815. The novel tells the tale of Ellen, who as a young girl expressed a desire to be a teacher. Growing up, her mother dies, and her father becomes bankrupt. Her fortunes continue to decline until she is rescued by a kindly older gentleman who sends her to school and helps her become a teacher. Ellen then forms her own school for children who were neglected as she was.
The Copp Collection contains about 150 books of early American imprint and shows a wide range of reading matter typical of a New England Puritan family living in a port town. Literacy was expected of many New Englanders, as Puritan doctrine required everyone to read the Bible. The abundance of multiple Bibles, psalms, hymnodies, sermons, and morality tales reflects the Copp’s religious beliefs. Other highlights of the library include the works of Shakespeare, almanacs, historical and political texts, and travel narratives.
The Copp Collection contains a variety of household objects that the Copp family of Connecticut used from around 1700 until the mid-1800s. Part of the Puritan Great Migration from England to Boston, the family eventually made their home in New London County, Connecticut, where their textiles, clothes, utensils, ceramics, books, bibles, and letters provide a vivid picture of daily life. More of the collection from the Division of Home and Community Life can be viewed by searching accession number 28810.
Currently not on view
overall: 3 5/8 in x 5 3/4 in x 3/4 in; 9.2075 cm x 14.605 cm x 1.905 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Credit Line
Gift of John Brenton Copp
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Domestic Life
Cultures & Communities
Copp Collection
Data Source
National Museum of American History


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