Sara Tappan Doolittle Robinson – Free-State Author

Sara Robinson

Sara Robinson

Sara Tappan Doolittle Robinson was a Free-State supporter and author in Kansas.

Sarah Lawrence was born at Belchertown, Massachusetts, on July 12, 1827, to Myron and Clarissa Dwight Lawrence. She received an excellent education in the classical school of Belchertown and at Salem Academy. On October 30, 1851, she was married to Dr. Charles Robinson, who afterward became the first governor of the State of Kansas, to which state she came with her husband in 1854. Like her husband, she ardently supported the cause of freedom and bore a prominent and helpful part in the struggle to make Kansas a Free-State.

In her book, Kansas, Its Interior and Exterior Life, published in 1856, she described the scenes, people, and events of the conflict between the friends and foes of slavery in Kansas. The book was written when the scenes and incidents described were fresh in her mind, and her graphic pen pictures give the reader such a presentation of the actual condition of affairs as is not to be found anywhere else in print. The book was not written to establish a theory or defend a partisan measure but aimed to tell just what happened in the territory. It had a wide circulation and significant influence and was regarded as one of the best works on the early history of Kansas. Mrs. Robinson also contributed extensively to periodical literature.

Governor Charles Robinson

Governor Charles Robinson

Her husband Charles died in August 1894. Sara passed at her beautiful rural estate, “Oakridge,” a few miles from Lawrence, Kansas on November 15, 1911. Their estate, valued at $200,000, was bequeathed to the University of Kansas.

Compiled and edited by Kathy Alexander/Legends of Kansas, updated February 2022.

Also See:

Historic People of Kansas

Kansas History

Kansas Home Page

Native American History in Kansas