Branch, Anna Hempstead
- Mary Hughes Brookhart
Branch, Anna Hempstead (18 March 1875–08 September 1937), poet and reformer, was born in New London, Connecticut, the daughter of John Locke Branch, a lawyer, and Mary Lydia Bolles, an author. Anna Hempstead Branch was born and died in “Hempstead House”; she was the last of ten generations of descendents to live there. Her family was close and supportive. The death of her one sibling Johnny when Anna was thirteen may have intensified an already developing mysticism. Because her father’s law practice was in New York, she spent her school years there and in Brooklyn, studying at Froebel and Adelphi Academies before attending Smith College. At Smith, Branch made lifetime friends among professors and classmates, edited the college’s literary magazine, and served as Ivy Orator. In 1898 a year after her graduation, ...