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Lucy Maud Montgomery
L.M. Montgomery
L.M. Montgomery ca. 1935
Born November 30, 1874(1874-11-30)
Clifton, Prince Edward Island
Died April 24, 1942 (aged 67)
Toronto, Ontario
Occupation novelist
Nationality Canadian
Notable work(s) Anne of Green Gables
Children Chester and plp

Lucy Maud Montgomery CBE, (always called "Maud" by family and friends) and publicly known as L.M. Montgomery, (30 November 1874–24 April 1942) was a Canadian author, best known for a series of novels beginning with Anne of Green Gables, published in 1908.

Once published, Anne of Green Gables was an immediate success. The central character, Anne, an orphaned girl, made Montgomery famous in her lifetime and gave her an international following.[1] The first novel was followed by a series of sequels with Anne as the central character. The novels became the basis for the highly acclaimed 1985 CBC television miniseries, Anne of Green Gables and several other television movies and programs, including Road to Avonlea, which ran in Canada and the U.S. from 1990-1996.

Contents

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Early life

Lucy Maud Montgomery, 1884 (age 10)

Lucy Maud Montgomery was born in Clifton (now New London), Prince Edward Island on November 30, 1874. Her mother, Clara Woolner Macneill Montgomery, died of tuberculosis when Maud was 21 months old. Stricken with grief over his wife’s death, Hugh Montgomery gave custody over to Montgomery’s maternal Grandparents.[2] Later he moved to Saskatchewan when Montgomery was seven years old. She went to live with her maternal grandparents, Alexander Marquis Macneill and Lucy Woolner Macneill, in the nearby community of Cavendish and was raised by them in a strict and unforgiving manner. Montgomery’s early life in Cavendish was very lonely.[3] Despite having relations nearby much of her childhood was spent alone. Montgomery credits this time of her life, in which she created many imaginary friends and worlds to cope with her loneliness, as what developed her creative mind.[4]

In November of 1890, Montgomery had her first work published in the Charlottetown paper, Daily Patriot.[5] She was as excited about this as she was about her return to her beloved Prince Edward Island,[6] in 1891. The return ‘home’ was a great relief to her. Her home life was an unhappy one due to the fact that Montgomery and her step-mother, Mary Ann McRae, did not get along[7] and because by, “... Maud’s account, her father’s marriage was not a happy one.”[8] In 1893, following the completion of her grade school education in Cavendish, she attended Prince of Wales College in Charlottetown. Completing a two-year program in one year, she obtained her teaching certificate. In 1895 and 1896 she studied literature at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Writing career, romantic interests and family life

Birth place of Lucy Maud Montgomery

Upon leaving Dalhousie, Montgomery worked as a teacher in various island schools. Montgomery did not enjoy her teaching career, however, she was content because it afforded her time to write. Beginning in 1897, she began to have her short stories published in various magazines and newspapers. A prolific talent, Montgomery had over 100 stories published from 1897 to 1907 inclusive.

During her teaching years, Montgomery had numerous love interests. As a highly fashionable young woman, she enjoyed “slim, good looks”[9], and the attention of several young men. In 1889 Montgomery began a relationship with a Cavendish boy named, Nate Lockhart. To Montgomery the relationship was merely a humorous and witty friendship. It ended abruptly when Montgomery refused his marriage proposal.[10]


The early 1890s brought unwelcome advances from Mr. John A. Mustard and Will Pritchard.[11] Mr. Mustard, her teacher, quickly became her suitor trying to impress with his knowledge of religious matters. His best topics of conversation were his thoughts on Predestination and “other dry points of theology”[12]. He held little appeal for Montgomery. During the period when Mustard’s interest became more pronounced, Montgomery “found a new interest” in Will Pritchard, the brother of her friend Laura Pritchard. [13] This friendship was more amiable; however, again Montgomery felt less than her suitor did for her.[14] When Pritchard sought to take their friendship further, Montgomery resisted. Montgomery, refused marriage proposals from both because, the former was narrow minded[15] and latter was merely a good chum.[16] She ended the period of flirtation when she moved to Prince Edward Island. However, they did keep up correspondence over six years until Pritchard caught influenza and died in 1897.[17]

In 1897, Montgomery accepted the proposal of Ed Simpson, who was a student in French River near Cavendish.[18][19] Montgomery wrote that she accepted his proposal out of a desire for “love and protection”[20], and because she felt her prospects were rather low.[21] In 1898, after much unhappiness and disillusionment Montgomery broke off her engagement to Simpson.[22] Montgomery no longer sought romantic love.[23]

In 1898 Montgomery moved back to Cavendish to live with her widowed grandmother. For a short time in 1901 and 1902 she worked in Halifax for the newspapers Chronicle and Echo. She returned to live with and care for her grandmother in 1902. Montgomery was inspired to write her first books during this time on Prince Edward Island. Over the next thirteen years Montgomery stayed in Cavendish to take care of her grandmother. This coincided with period of considerable income from her publications.[24] Although she enjoyed this income she was aware that, “marriage was a necessary choice for women in Canada.”[25]

In 1908, Montgomery published her first book, Anne of Green Gables. Three years later, shortly after her grandmother's death, she married Ewan (found in Montgomery's notes and letters as "Ewan") Macdonald (1870 - 1943), a Presbyterian Minister, and moved to Ontario where he had taken the position of minister of St. Paul's Presbyterian Church, Leaskdale in present-day Uxbridge Township, also affiliated with the congregation in nearby Zephyr. They had three sons, the second of which was stillborn.The great increase of her writings in Leaskdale is the result of her need to escape the hardships of real life.[26] Montgomery underwent several periods of depression while trying to cope with the duties of motherhood and church life, and with her husband’s attacks of religious melancholia and deteriorating health; “For a women who had given the world so much joy was mostly an unhappy one.”[27] For much of her life writing was her one great solace.[28] Also, during this time Montgomery was engaged in a series of “acrimonious, expensive and trying lawsuits with the publisher L.C. Page, which dragged on until she finally won in 1929.”[29]

Leaskdale manse, home of Lucy Maud Montgomery from 1911 to 1926

Montgomery wrote her next eleven books from the Leaskdale manse. The structure was subsequently sold by the congregation and is now the Lucy Maud Montgomery Leaskdale Manse Museum. In 1926, the family moved in to the Norval Presbyterian Charge, in present-day Halton Hills, Ontario, where today the Lucy Maud Montgomery Memorial Garden can be seen from Highway 7.

In 1935, upon her husband's retirement, Montgomery moved to Swansea, Ontario, a suburb of Toronto, buying a house which she named "Journey's End", situated on the Humber River. Montgomery continued to write, publishing Anne of Windy Poplars in 1936, Jane of Lantern Hill in 1937, and Anne of Ingleside in 1939.

In the last year of her life, Montgomery completed what she intended to be a ninth book featuring Anne, titled The Blythes Are Quoted. It included fifteen short stories (many of which were previously published) that she revised to include Anne and her family as mainly peripheral characters; forty-one poems (most of which were previously published) that she attributed to Anne and to her son Walter, who died as a soldier in the Great War; and vignettes featuring the Blythe family members discussing the poems. An abridged version, which shortened and reorganized the stories and omitted all the vignettes and all but one of the poems, was published as a collection of short stories The Road to Yesterday in 1974. A complete edition of The Blythes Are Quoted, edited by Benjamin Lefebvre, will be published in its entirety by Viking Canada in October 2009.

Death and legacy

Lucy Maud Montgomery MacDonald
wife of
Ewan MacDonald
1874 - 1942

It was reported that Montgomery died of congestive heart failure in Toronto. [30] However, it was revealed by her granddaughter Kate Macdonald Butler in September 2008 that Montgomery suffered from depression - possibly as a result of caring for her mentally ill husband for decades - and took her own life via a drug overdose.[31] But there is another point of view.[32][33] According to Mary Rubio, who has written a biography of Montgomery Lucy Maud Montgomery: The Gift of Wings (2008), what she believes is her suicide note is actually an entry to be added to her journal and not supposed to be a suicide note.

In all, during her lifetime she had published 20 novels, over 500 short stories, an autobiography and a book of poetry. She was buried at the Cavendish Community Cemetery in Cavendish following her wake in the Green Gables farmhouse and funeral in the local Presbyterian church.

Her major collections are archived at the University of Guelph, while the L.M. Montgomery Institute at the University of Prince Edward Island coordinates most of the research and conferences surrounding her work. The first biography of Montgomery was The Wheel of Things: A Biography of L.M. Montgomery (1975) written by Mollie Gillen. Dr. Gillen also discovered over 40 of Montgomery's letters to her pen-friend George Boyd MacMillan in Scotland and used them as the basis for her work. Beginning in the 1980s her complete journals, edited by Mary Rubio and Elizabeth Waterston, were published by the Oxford University Press. From 1988-95, editor Rea Wilmshurst collected and published numerous short stories by Montgomery.

Despite the fact that Montgomery published over twenty books, “she never felt she achieved her one 'great' book.”[29] Her readership however, has always found her characters and stories to be upon the best in fiction.[34] Mark Twain said Montgomery’s Anne was “the dearest and most moving and delightful child since the immortal Alice.”[35] Montgomery was honoured by being the first female in Canada to be named a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts in England and by being invested in the Order of the British Empire in 1935.[36]

Her fame was not limited to Canadian audiences. Anne of Green Gables, became a huge success in Japan. Every year thousands of Japanese tourists “make a pilgrimage to a green-gabled Victorian farmhouse in the town of Cavendish on Prince Edward Island...”[37] A national park was near her home in Cavendish, in honour of her works. Montgomery is one of Canada’s best known authors and continues to be a source of pride for Canadians.

Works

Novels

First page of "Anne of Green Gables", published in 1908

Short story collections

  • Chronicles of Avonlea (1912)
  • Further Chronicles of Avonlea (1920)
  • The Road to Yesterday (1974)
  • The Doctor's Sweetheart, selected by Catherine McLay (1979)
  • Akin to Anne: Tales of Other Orphans, edited by Rea Wilmshurst (1988)
  • Along the Shore: Tales by the Sea, edited by Rea Wilmshurst (1989)
  • Among the Shadows: Tales from the Darker Side, edited by Rea Wilmshurst (1990)
  • After Many Days: Tales of Time Passed, edited by Rea Wilmshurst (1991)
  • Against the Odds: Tales of Achievement, edited by Rea Wilmshurst (1993)
  • At the Altar: Matrimonial Tales, edited by Rea Wilmshurst (1994)
  • Across the Miles: Tales of Correspondence, edited by Rea Wilmshurst (1995)
  • Christmas with Anne and Other Holiday Stories, edited by Rea Wilmshurst (1995)

Short stories by chronological order

  • Lucy Maud Montgomery Short Stories: 1896 to 1901 (2008) ISBN 978-1406565102
  • Lucy Maud Montgomery Short Stories: 1902 to 1903 (2008) ISBN 978-1406565119
  • Lucy Maud Montgomery Short Stories: 1904 (2008) ISBN 978-1406565126
  • Lucy Maud Montgomery Short Stories: 1905 to 1906 (2008) ISBN 978-1406565133
  • Lucy Maud Montgomery Short Stories: 1907 to 1908 (2008) ISBN 978-1406565140
  • Lucy Maud Montgomery Short Stories: 1909 to 1922 (2008) ISBN 978-1406565157

Poetry

  • The Watchman & Other Poems (1916)
  • The Poetry of Lucy Maud Montgomery, selected by John Ferns and Kevin McCabe (1987)

Non-fiction

  • Courageous Women (1934) (with Marian Keith and Mabel Burns McKinley)

Autobiography

  • The Alpine Path: The Story of My Career (1975; originally published in Everywoman's World in 1917)
  • The Selected Journals of L.M. Montgomery (5 vols.), edited by Mary Rubio and Elizabeth Waterston (1985-2004)

Notes

  1. ^ Lucy Maud Montgomery and Anne. InfoPEI. Retrieved on: December 22, 2007
  2. ^ McLeod, Carol. Legendary Canadian Women. Hantsport: Lancelot Press Limited, 1983. 79.
  3. ^ Henley Rubio, Mary. Lucy Maud Montgomery The Gift of Wings. Doubleday U.S, 2008. 17.
  4. ^ Bourgoin, Suzanne Michelle ed. "Lucy Maud Montgomery." Encyclopedia of World Biography. 2nd. 11. Detroit: Gale Research, 1998. 136.
  5. ^ Ibid.
  6. ^ Bourgoin, Suzanne Michelle ed. "Lucy Maud Montgomery." Encyclopedia of World Biography. 2nd. 11. Detroit: Gale Research, 1998. 136.
  7. ^ Rawlinson, H Graham, and J.L. Granatstein. The Canadian 100, The 100 Most Influential Canadians of The 20th Century. Toronto: Little, Brown & Company (Canada) Limited, 1997. 145.
  8. ^ Heilbron, Alexandra, ed. and McCabe, Kevin, comp. The Lucy Maud Montgomery Album. Toronto: Fitzhenry & Whiteside Limited, 1999. 84.
  9. ^ Bourgoin, Suzanne Michelle ed. "Lucy Maud Montgomery." Encyclopedia of World Biography. 2nd. 11. Detroit: Gale Research, 1998. 136.
  10. ^ Heilbron, Alexandra, ed. and McCabe, Kevin, comp. The Lucy Maud Montgomery Album. Toronto: Fitzhenry & Whiteside Limited, 1999. 118.
  11. ^ Ibid. 120
  12. ^ Iid. 121.
  13. ^ Henley Rubio, Mary. Lucy Maud Montgomery The Gift of Wings. Doubleday Canada, 2008. 63
  14. ^ Ibid. 64
  15. ^ Heilbron, Alexandra, ed. and McCabe, Kevin, comp. The Lucy Maud Montgomery Album. Toronto: Fitzhenry & Whiteside Limited, 1999. 123.
  16. ^ Henley Rubio, Mary. Lucy Maud Montgomery The Gift of Wings. Doubleday Canada, 2008. 63
  17. ^ Heilbron, Alexandra, ed. and McCabe, Kevin, comp. The Lucy Maud Montgomery Album. Toronto: Fitzhenry & Whiteside Limited, 1999. 122.
  18. ^ Jane Urquhart, L.M. Montgomery. Toronto: Penguin Canada, 2009. 24
  19. ^ Heilbron, Alexandra, ed. and McCabe, Kevin, comp. The Lucy Maud Montgomery Album. Toronto: Fitzhenry & Whiteside Limited, 1999. 127.
  20. ^ Henley Rubio, Mary. Lucy Maud Montgomery The Gift of Wings. Doubleday Canada, 2008. 91
  21. ^ Ibid.
  22. ^ Ibid. 98
  23. ^ Bourgoin, Suzanne Michelle ed. "Lucy Maud Montgomery." Encyclopedia of World Biography. 2nd. 11. Detroit: Gale Research, 1998. 136.
  24. ^ Bourgoin, Suzanne Michelle ed. "Lucy Maud Montgomery." Encyclopedia of World Biography. 2nd. 11. Detroit: Gale Research, 1998. 136.
  25. ^ Rawlinson, H Graham, and J.L. Granatstein. The Canadian 100, The 100 Most Influential Canadians of The 20th Century. Toronto: Little, Brown & Company (Canada) Limited, 1997. 145.
  26. ^ McLeod, Carol. Legendary Canadian Women. Hantsport: Lancelot Press Limited, 1983. 87.
  27. ^ Rawlinson, H Graham, and J.L. Granatstein. The Canadian 100, The 100 Most Influential Canadians of The 20th Century. Toronto: Little, Brown & Company (Canada) Limited, 1997. 145.
  28. ^ Heilbron, Alexandra, ed. and McCabe, Kevin, comp. The Lucy Maud Montgomery Album. Toronto: Fitzhenry & Whiteside Limited, 1999. 121.
  29. ^ a b Bourgoin, Suzanne Michelle ed. "Lucy Maud Montgomery." Encyclopedia of World Biography. 2nd. 11. Detroit: Gale Research, 1998. 137.
  30. ^ Selected Journals of L.M. Montgomery Volume V: 1935-1942 P. 399
    The primary cause of death on her certificate was "Coronary Thrombosis."
  31. ^ Macdonald Butler, Kate (2008-09-27). "The heartbreaking truth about Anne's creator". Globe and Mail. http://v1.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20080919.wmhmontgomery0920/BNStory/mentalhealth/. Retrieved 2009-08-13. 
  32. ^ Adams, James (2008-09-24). "Lucy Maud suffered 'unbearable psychological pain'". Globe and Mail. http://v1.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20080924.wmontgomery24/BNStory/mentalhealth/. Retrieved 2009-08-13. 
  33. ^ "Is this Lucy Maud's suicide note?". Globe and Mail. 2008-09-24. http://v1.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20080924.wmontgomeryside24/BNStory/mentalhealth. Retrieved 2009-08-13. 
  34. ^ Heilbron, Alexandra, ed. and McCabe, Kevin, comp. The Lucy Maud Montgomery Album. Toronto: Fitzhenry & Whiteside Limited, 1999. 3.
  35. ^ Ibid.
  36. ^ Ibid.
  37. ^ Heilbron, Alexandra, ed. and McCabe, Kevin, comp. The Lucy Maud Montgomery Album. Toronto: Fitzhenry & Whiteside Limited, 1999. 440.

References

  • Gammel, Irene. "Looking for Anne of Green Gables: The Story of L. M. Montgomery and Her Literary Classic." St. Martin's Press, New York, 2008. ISBN 0-312-38237-5.
  • Heilbron, Alexandra, “Remembering Lucy Maud Montgomery.” Dundurn Press, 2001. ISBN 9781550023626.

External links

Texts, images and collections

Audiobook

  • LibriVox (free audiobooks of public domain)

Organizations

Cheese Face Inc. *(found in Prince Edward Island)* Montgomery Workers 1nc *for lonely , homless, poor , poverty , people *

Other information


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