There is an author who is presently writing a bio of Elizabeth (was Peabody until Daddy changed it to Sewall) Alcott. Long known as the shy sister who died first and forever immortalized as Beth in her sister’s novel ‘Little Women, ‘ Susan Bailey seeks to uncover the hidden depths of this overlooked Alcott sister in a biography-likely the 1st to be done that focuses on her.
I’ve followed this biography’s progress with great interest. Some of what Lizzie (the family mostly called her Lizzie. Her father was the only one it seems that actually called her Beth), left behind has been made available through blog posts and new biographies focused on other family members, especially her father Bronson and her sister Louisa.
Author Susan Bailey shared some diary pages that Lizzie wrote at 10, which told a lot about how she thought, what she liked and what she did. You may, like me, not give Bronson a pass for what he put his little family though in the name of his ‘principles,’ we can thank him for encouraging his children to keep diaries/journals as it was a habit they all kept for the most part for the rest of their lives and of which some fragments have been left behind.
This particular entry has a link to a YouTube video of the one known portrait of Elizabeth Sewall Alcott animated. Her eyes move and at the end, she smiles a bit more. Usually I take issue with the latest craze lately to take old b&W photos and images and colorize them and some other manipulations. The people who do this claim that they do it to “make them more relatable and humanize them to younger audiences,” which is crap I say. However, I do have to admit that I did happen to like this “animated” Lizzie Alcott.
I do wonder how she would’ve thought about all this.
I was stunned by this – she is just so lovely!