Sarah Grimke
Name: Sarah Grimke
Occupation: Activist
Gender: Female
Birth Day: November 26, 1792
Death Date: Dec 23, 1873 (age 81)
Age: Aged 81
Country: United States
Zodiac Sign: Sagittarius

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Sarah Grimke

Sarah Grimke was born on November 26, 1792 in United States (81 years old). Sarah Grimke is an Activist, zodiac sign: Sagittarius. Nationality: United States. Approx. Net Worth: Undisclosed.

Brief Info

American women's rights activist, abolitionist, and writer whose activism and writings inspired such famous suffragists as Lucy Stone and Lucretia Mott. She published her famous essay, Letters on the Equality of the Sexes and the Condition of Women, in 1837.


She challenged the hypocrisy of a church that touted its inclusiveness but denied true membership to slaves. Later in her life, she joined the Quaker community.

Net Worth 2020

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Does Sarah Grimke Dead or Alive?

As per our current Database, Sarah Grimke died on Dec 23, 1873 (age 81).


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Before Fame

She learned of the evils of slavery while growing up on a plantation in South Carolina. As a young girl, she secretly gave reading and writing lessons to one of her family's slaves and also taught weekly Bible lessons to the enslaved children who worked on her father's plantation.


Biography Timeline


Sarah's brother Thomas went to Yale Law School in 1805. During his visits back home, Thomas continued teaching Sarah new ideas about the dangers of Enlightenment and the importance of religion. (Thomas, a "colonizationist", died young, and was described in an obituary as most proud of his piety.) These ideas, combined with her secret studies of the law, gave her some of the basis for her later work as an activist. Her father told her that if she had been a man, she would have been the greatest lawyer in South Carolina. Lerner gives a somewhat different version, in which her father said "she would have made the greatest jurist in the country." Sarah believed her inability to get higher education was unfair. She wondered at the behavior of her family and neighbors, who encouraged slaves to be baptized and to attend worship services, but did not consider them true brothers and sisters in faith.


From her youth, Sarah believed that religion should take a more proactive role in improving the lives of those who suffered most. Her religious quest took her first to Presbyterianism; she converted in 1817. After moving to Philadelphia in 1821, she joined the Quakers, whom she had learned about in an earlier visit with her father. There, she became an outspoken advocate for education and suffrage for African Americans and women.

By 1817, Sarah's father was seriously ill, and the doctors of Charleston recommended he travel to Philadelphia to consult Philip Syng Physick. Despite her vehement objections, her father insisted that Sarah, then 26 years old, accompany him as his nursemaid. Sarah relented, and they left Charleston for the north in May, 1819. When Physick found he could not help, he suggested that they take in the sea air of the fishing village of Long Branch, New Jersey. The pair settled into a boardinghouse, where, after just a few weeks, John Faucheraud Grimké died.


She returned to Charleston in the spring of 1827 to "save" her sister Angelina from the limitations of the South. Angelina visited Sarah in Philadelphia from July to November of the same year and returned to Charleston committed to the Quaker faith. After leaving Charleston, Angelina and Sarah traveled around New England speaking on the abolitionist circuit, at first addressing women only in large parlors and small churches. Their speeches concerning abolition and women's rights reached thousands. In November, 1829, Angelina joined her sister in Philadelphia. They had long had a close relationship; for years, Angelina called Sarah "mother", as Sarah was both her godmother and primary caretaker.


Sarah and Angelina had come to loathe slavery and all its degradations. They had hoped that their new faith would be more accepting of their abolitionist beliefs than their former had been. However, their initial attempts to attack slavery caused them difficulties in the Quaker community. The sisters persisted despite their belief that the fight for women's rights was as important as the fight to abolish slavery. Although Sarah had the desire to 'equip women for economic independence and for social usefulness' [22], they continued to be attacked, even by some abolitionists, who considered their position extreme. In 1836, Sarah published An Epistle to the Clergy of the Southern States. In 1837, Letters on the Equality of the Sexes and the Condition of Women was published serially in a Massachusetts newspaper, The Spectator, and immediately reprinted in The Liberator, the newspaper published by radical abolitionist and women's rights leader William Lloyd Garrison. The letters were published in book form in 1838.

Joining her sister in the American Anti-Slavery Society in 1836, Sarah originally felt that she had found the place where she truly belonged, in which her thoughts and ideas were encouraged. However, as she and Angelina began speaking not only on abolition but also on the importance of women's rights, they began to face much criticism. Their public speeches were seen as unwomanly because they spoke to mixed-gender audiences, called "promiscuous audiences" at the time. They also publicly debated men who disagreed with them. This was too much for the general public of 1837 and caused many harsh attacks on their womanhood; one line of thought suggested that they were both just poor "spinsters" displaying themselves in order to find any man who would be willing to take one.


Sarah Grimke used Scripture in most of her writings that demonstrated her dedication to the Quaker faith and her genuine belief in it compatibility with activism. In 1837 Sarah responded to a Pastoral Letter that reinforced Biblical interpretations supporting the role of females in the "private sphere" only, using Scripture to provide the benefits and power of this position. Sarah responded to this letter also with Scripture, encouraging women to take on a motto of " 'The Lord is my light, and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; whom shall I be afraid?' She must feel, if she feels rightly, that she is filling one of the most important duties laid upon her as an accountable being, and that her character, instead of being 'unnatural', is in exact accordance with the will of Him,". Her faith and closeness to God were a critical factor in her ability to be unafraid during times of opposition and to argue on behalf of women and slaves well.


In 1838, Angelina married Theodore Weld, a leading abolitionist who had been a severe critic of their inclusion of women's rights into the abolition movement. She retired to the background of the movement while being a wife and mother, though not immediately. Sarah completely ceased to speak publicly. Apparently Weld had recently written her a letter detailing her inadequacies in speaking. He tried to explain that he wrote this out of love for her, but said that she was damaging the cause, not helping it, unlike her sister. However, as Sarah received many requests to speak over the following years (as did Angelina), it is questionable whether her "inadequacies" were as bad as he described.

It is in these letters that she discusses the wrongs done to women that are inconsistent with the Bible and gives advice on how women ought to combat these issues. This book was published in 1838, but her writings and letters, as well as her sister's, had been circulating for years due to the publications of her sisters letters in The Liberator by William Lloyd Garrison.


In 1868, Sarah discovered that her late brother had three illegitimate mixed-race sons by a "personal" enslave woman. Welcoming them into the family, Sarah worked to provide funds to educate Archibald Grimké and Francis James Grimké, who went on to successful careers and marriages, and were leaders in the African-American community. John, the youngest, was not interested in formal education and returned to the South to live.

🎂 Upcoming Birthday

Currently, Sarah Grimke is 229 years, 2 months and 0 days old. Sarah Grimke will celebrate 230th birthday on a Saturday 26th of November 2022.

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