Katharine Lee Bates, (August 12, 1859 – March 28, 1929), is remembered as the author of the words to the anthem "America the Beautiful".
Bates was born in Falmouth, Massachusetts. The daughter of a Congregational pastor, she graduated from Wellesley College in 1880 and for many years was a professor of English literature at Wellesley. While teaching there, she was elected a member of the newly formed Pi Gamma Mu honor society for the social sciences because of her interest in history and politics for which she also studied. She lived at Wellesley with Katharine Coman, who herself was a history and political economy teacher and founder of the Wellesley College Economics department. The pair lived together for twenty-five years until Coman's death in 1915. These arrangements were sometimes called "Boston marriages" or "Wellesley marriages," which, however derisive the terms may be, did not indicate a knowledge or even a presumption of the sexual practices of those to whom the terms were applied. Most often, such "marriages" were for convenience and companionship of unmarried women.
Read Katharine Lee Bates "Ballad Book," free from Project Gutenberg.