English, Department of


Date of this Version



Published in MISSISSIPPI QUARTERLY: THE JOURNAL OF SOUTHERN CULTURES 28.3-4 (2005): 665-702. Copyright 2005 Mississippi State University. http://www.missq.msstate.edu/


In his 1884 Memoir Fifty Years among Authors, Books and Publishers, New York publisher J. C. Derby, who had published Augusta Jane Evans's second novel, Beulah, in 1859, gives an account of the publishing history of Evans's third novel, Macaria. Both the facts he recounts and his interpretation of those facts have been taken as largely accurate, appearing repeatedly in scholarly analyses of Evans's life and works. This essay argues that Derby's account is a romanticized, factually inaccurate account of wartime events from a post- Reconstruction perspective.