Category Archives: D
DANA, RICHARD HENRY, JR. (1815-1882). Son of a genteel poet and member of a prominent Boston family, Richard Henry Dana Jr. gained literary fame by turning his back on his Brahmin upbringing, sailing aboard a merchant vessel, and subsequently describing Continue reading text links
DANA, RICHARD HENRY, SR. (1787-1879). Richard Henry Dana Sr. was born into a prominent Cambridge, Massachusetts, family. He was educated at Harvard, leaving without a degree in 1807. He studied law and passed the bar in 1811 but showed little Continue reading text links
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DAVIS, REBECCA HARDING (1830-1910). Although best known for her gritty depiction of factory life in her story “Life in the Iron-Mills” (1861), Rebecca Harding Davis frequently used vivid sea imagery in her writings. Intimately familiar with marshes, sand dunes, shipwreck Continue reading text links
DAVIS, RICHARD HARDING (1864-1916). Born in Philadelphia, Richard Harding Davis was the first child born to the journalist L. Clarke Davis and the fiction writer Rebecca Harding Davis. He soon followed in his parents’ footsteps as a newspaperman and later Continue reading text links
DEAN, HARRY [FOSTER] (1864-1935). Published in 1929 in Boston, Berlin, and London, Harry Dean’s unique sea narrative and remarkable autobiography was entitled Umbala in Britain and The Pedro Gorino in the United States. Dean was born in Philadelphia in 1864, Continue reading text links
DELANO, AMASA (1763-1823). Amasa Delano, whose Voyages and Travels (1817) was the source for Herman Melville’s “Benito Cereno” (1855), was born in Duxbury, Massachusetts. After serving briefly in the Continental army during the American Revolution, Delano began a lifelong career Continue reading text links
DESROSIERS, LEO-PAUL (1896-1967). Leo-Paul Desrosiers was born in Berthier-en-Haut, Quebec, a village on the banks of the Saint Lawrence River northeast of Montreal. His happy childhood provided him with material for his first work, Ames et Paysages (1922), and a Continue reading text links
DEY, RICHARD (1945-) is an American poet born in 1945 who writes of New England and the West Indies. As a teenager he sailed in the Schooner Tabor Boy out of Marion, Massachusetts. After serving in the US Army as Continue reading text links
DICKEY, JAMES [LAFAYETTE] (1923-1997). James Dickey, noted poet, novelist, and critic, was born in Atlanta, Georgia. During World War II, he served in a night-fighter squadron in the South Pacific. In the late 1940s he attended Vanderbilt University, during which Continue reading text links
DICKINSON, EMILY [ELIZABETH] (1830-1886). Although the great American poet Emily Dickinson is frequently quoted as saying she “never saw the Sea” (P 1052), it seems probable that the reclusive native of Amherst, Massachusetts, may have glimpsed the Atlantic coast on Continue reading text links
DISTURNELL, JOHN (1801-1877). A printer and book dealer, as well as librarian of the Cooper Union, John Disturnell, who lived most of his life in New York City when he was not traveling, was a prolific writer of travel books Continue reading text links
DONER, MARY FRANCES (1893-1985). Mary Frances Doner set many of her books near her birthplace, Port Huron, Michigan. She supplied around 250 short stories for pulp magazines early in her career and in the 1930s began producing novels and nonfiction, Continue reading text links
D[OOLITTLE]., H[ILDA]. (1886-1961). H. D., a poet, novelist, dramatist, and translator whose works often incorporate sea imagery, was born in Pennsylvania. Childhood visits to the seacoasts of Rhode Island and Maine first inspired H. D., best known for her imagist Continue reading text links
MARK DOTY (1953- ). From his birth in 1953 until age seventeen, when he left his parents’ home in Tucson, Arizona, Mark Doty moved frequently. In Firebird (1992), Doty’s memoir of childhood, he recalls living in seven houses in seven Continue reading text links
DOUGLASS, FREDERICK (1818-1895). Abolitionist, orator, social reformer, editor, author, and consul general to Haiti, Frederick Douglass was born into slavery as Frederick Augustus Bailey. He spent the early years of his childhood in Talbot County, Maryland, on the eastern shore Continue reading text links
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DUNBAR, PAUL LAURENCE (1872-1906). Best known for the dialect poetry suggested by the titles of his four published volumes, Paul Laurence Dunbar, the son of former slaves, also wrote a number of short stories and novels. His interest in the Continue reading text links
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DUNLAP, WILLIAM (1766-1839). William Dunlap, born in Perth Amboy, New Jersey, showed considerable artistic aptitude at an early age and in 1784 was sent to England to study painting under Benjamin West. There, however, he became fascinated with the theater Continue reading text links