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A Field Guide to American Ornithology in the Delaware Valley 1699-1900
Graceanna Lewis
(1821-1912) in the Delaware Valley
Graceanna Lewis was born, raised, lived, worked, died, and is buried in the Delaware Valley Area

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Page last updated Monday, October 5, 2009 8:04 AM

Graceanna Lewis (1821-1912) was trained in the natural sciences as were many Quaker women; she wrote and illustrated A Natural History of Birds in 1844

Graceanna Lewis in the Delaware Valley

- This "Liberty Bell" signifies an event that took place in the Delaware Valley.


1821, August 3 - Graceanna Lewis is born in West Vincent, PA (see also). Parents are John and Esther Fussell Lewis. She was the second of five children - Miriann, Graceanna, Rebecca, Charles (died in infancy) and Elizabeth.

1824 - John Lewis (father) dies.


? until 1839 - Attended Kimberton Boarding School. This is now part of Kimberton Village in Chester County, PA.


1842-1843 - Moved to York PA, where her uncle Bartholomew Fussell set up a small boarding school for girls. Graceanna taught a courses in astronomy and botany.

1844 - Taught at a school in Phoenixville, PA

1845 - returned home to Chester County

Before 1847 - became friends with Mary Townsend (born May 15, 1814), whose brother, John Kirk Townsend became famous for his natural history studies. Mary spent 16 months on the Lewis farm from 1847-1848.


1851, June - Mary Townsend dies


1867 - John Cassin names Icterus graceanna (White-edged Oriole) in honor of Graceanna Lewis. His description of this species is first published in the Proceedings of the Academy of Natural Sciences, Philadelphia, PA (1867, Page 52). The type specimen is part of the ornithological collection of the Academy of Natural Sciences, Philadelphia, PA

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1900 US Census - Graceanna Lewis is listed as living at 402 Gayley Street in Media PA.

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1912, February 25 - Graceanna Lewis dies in Media, Pa. She is buried in the Providence Friends Meeting Cemetery.

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References .

Warner, Deborah Jean. "Graceanna Lewis: Scientist and Humanitarian". Smithsonian Institution Press. City of Washington. 1979




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