The Life of Emma Willard

By: Taylor Holt

Early life

Emma Willard, born in 1787, was the sixteenth child of seventeen in her early life family. Her fathers name was Samuel Hart and her mothers name was Lydia Hart. Her father was a farmer in Berlin, Connecticut. He made Willard read and be able to think for herself. Willard didn't mind, she enjoyed learning, she had a passion for it. Due to her father making her read and learn for herself and also her passion for it motivated her to fight for woman's rights for and to get a good education. When she was 15, Willard was enrolled in her first school in 1802. Just two years after she first was enrolled, Willard started teaching there. And that's where it all began.

Later life

Later, a couple years after her first teaching job, she moved to Middlebury, Vermont to head a female academy where she met her husband, John Willard. He already had 4 kids that he brought into the marriage due to his previous marriage. John and her also had a kid of their own, his name was John William Willard. Than in 1821 they moved to Troy, New York where she also opened a school of her own. When her first husband died in 1825 she re-married to a Christopher C. Yates in 1838 and divorced him in 1843. After her divorce her son and his wife took over the school she had been managing at the time and traveled to promote education for woman's rights. She left to travel in 1838 and returned in Troy, New York in 1844 where she died in 1870. She was buried in Oakwood cemetery. In her remembrance for starting the school in Troy they named it the Emma Willard School. There is also a memorial for her remembrance in Middleburry, Vermont.