BRUNSWICK – Two previously unrecorded Sarah Orne Jewett manuscripts, “A Dark Night” and “A Village Patriot,” were recently donated to Bowdoin College by Nathalie B. Thompson, a private collector from Vero Beach, Fla.

Jewett often used Maine settings in her writing, such as “The Country of the Pointed Firs.” She was born in South Berwick where her home is open to the public from June 1 to Oct. 15 (www.spnea.org/visit/homes/jewett.htm has information about her home).

The manuscripts will be in the George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections and Archives at the college’s library.

The short stories, bound in separate volumes, were originally drafted for the Bacheller Newspaper Syndicate, which distributed works for publication, principally in the northeastern United States. “A Dark Night” first appeared in the Philadelphia Press in serialization during April 1895. “A Village Patriot” was purchased by the syndicate in 1896 and was published in various places, including in the Boston Evening Transcript (July 3, 1896) and, a day later, in the New York Times.

The public is welcome to examine the Jewett manuscripts. The department, on the third floor of Hawthorne-Longfellow Library, (207) 725-3288, is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.


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