Author Carolyn Newton Curry will be speaking during the Friends of the Library meeting at the Covington branch of the Newton County Library at 7 p.m. tonight.
Curry recently published the book "Suffer and Grow Strong The life of Ella Gertrude Clanton Thomas, 1834-1907" by Mercer University Press.
Suffer and Grow strong consists of Thomas's journals, which have long been an indispensable source for anyone seeking to understand the 19th century South and Southern white women's experiences.
Michele Gillespie, Presidential Professor of History at Wake Forest, said she was suprised that Thomas has never been the subject of a full-length biagrophy.
"Carolyn Curry's welcome new book carefully documents Thomas's life story and puts her journals into an intriguingly fresh context," Gillespie said.
Thomas was born in 1834 to one of Georgia's wealthiest families and kept a diary for 41 years. Her diaries, before during and after the Civil War filled 13 hand-written volumes with 450,000 words. Thomas experience loss of wealth, bankruptcy, the death of loved ones, serious illness and devastating family strife. She gave birth to 10 children, and saw four die. Through it all Thomas maintained her diary.
Bringing her diary to life is Curry, a former teacher at the Westminster Schools in Atlanta and the Unviersity of Kentucky and the founder and chair of Women Alone Together. She holds a BA in English from Agnes Scott College and MA and PhD degrees in History from Georgia State University.