Beacon Street Diary blog
Reminder - History Matters series: Dreams of the Red Phoenix
Make sure to let us know if you'll be joining us for this week's free lunchtime lecture.
Virginia will read from Dreams of the Red Phoenix, and also share intriguing, historical photos and writings from her missionary grandparents, who lived in rugged northwest China in the early twentieth century. Virginia holds an MFA from Sarah Lawrence College and has taught writing at the University of Pennsylvania and New York University. Her first novel, River of Dust, is also a historical novel set in China. Her father, Lucian W. Pye, was born and raised in China and became an eminent political scientist and sinologist. Her grandfather, Congregational minister Rev. Watts O. Pye, was one of the first returning missionaries after the Boxer Rebellion of 1900. Virginia's grandmother stayed in China after the death of her husband and fled with her son — Virginia's father — on one of the last ships out of China to the U.S. following Pearl Harbor.
The Congregational Library and Archives is a major repository for diaries and letters of missionaries sent by the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions (A.B.C.F.M.) to places around the world. Its headquarters at 14 Beacon Street became a home for missionaries on leave. The collection of these personal manuscripts, as well as, A.B.C.F.M.'S institutional documents and publications are available to the public.
This event is co-sponsored by our neighbors at the Boston Athenaeum.
Books will be available for purchase from Harvard Book Store staff on the day.
Thursday, December 3rd
12:00 - 1:00 pm
photograph of missionary Gertrude Pye (wife of Rev. Watts O. Pye) driving a cart in China courtesy of Virginia Pye