“Our beautiful home in Charleston”: A visit to Mrs. Eddy’s southern historic house

April 07, 2017

“Home of my heart New England's shore/ I've parted long from thee.” – excerpt from a poem written by Mary Baker Eddy while living in Wilmington, North Carolina, 1844

Mary Baker Eddy’s lifelong connection to New England is well known, and her story is documented through Longyear’s collection and historic homes in the region. However, some may not know that Mrs. Eddy spent her early married life in the antebellum South. This was a short but pivotal time in her story, and we’ve received a number of questions over the years about it: What was her home and community life like? How was the contemporary Southern experience different from her life in New England? How did her time there impact her future life and legacy?

Caitlin Carpenter, a friend of Longyear, had some of these same questions herself, so she planned her own trip to Charleston, South Carolina, taking place later this month. She has graciously offered to share updates during her on-the-ground investigation! Here are a few of the ways you can follow along: 

  • Watch for an article next week about the South when Mrs. Eddy lived there
  • Make sure you like Longyear’s Facebook page and new Instagram account to follow along with videos and photos from Caitlin’s trip
  • Let us know on Facebook, Instagram, or by email (letters@longyear.org) if you have any questions you want to know about Mrs. Eddy’s life in Charleston
  • Share your thoughts on what you learned or found surprising or interesting. We’d love to hear from you!


City of Charleston, South Carolina, ca. 1838, courtesy Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division.