1838-1912
portrait

February 22, 1838, New Rochelle, New York.

June 4, 1912, Glen Ridge, New Jersey.

Sangster’s literary gifts were evident at an early age. Her first published work, Little Janney, appeared when she was only 17 years old. However, she gave up writing after marrying George Sangster in 1858, though she resumed after he died in 1871. She was a well known contributor to the major periodicals of the time, and worked as assistant editor of Hearth and Home, editor of Christian at Work for six years, assistant editor of the Christian Intelligencer for nine years, editor of Harper’s Young People, and editor of Harper’s Bazaar (1889-99).

Here is a poem she wrote about Fanny Crosby in 1903:

The dear Lord has kept her close to Him,
In a little curtained space
That never is wholly dusk or dim,
Because of His shining face;
Though we are afraid of the brooding dark
It cannot be so for her,
For the Lord Himself has made an ark
For His loving worshipper.

There are things of earth that she cannot see,
Except with her spirit’s eyes;
The light in the blossom-perfumed tree,
The stars in the still night-skies;
But never imagine that she has not known
Far fairer sights than ours!
The hem of His garment round her thrown
Is broidered with fadeless flowers.

She smiles the smile of a happy child,
Her voice as the child’s is sweet,
She has followed so safe through wood and wild,
The print of her Saviour’s feet.
Her ear, attuned to the finest chord,
Has caught the songs of heaven;
She has taught us all how to praise her Lord
For the grace of sins forgiven.

Her song has bubbled with notes of joy,
Has risen in faith so strong,
It has reached the height where the whole employ
Is praise, where the ransomed throng.
And year by year as the sifted snow
Of age on her head is white,
She has been as a child of the long ago,
In her dear Lord’s loving sight.

Why call her blind, who can see so well
The hidden things and clear:
Who knows so much that she may not tell,
Of the land that’s drawing near?
The pure in heart, our Saviour said,
And the word is true for aye,
Though drifting centuries have sped,
Since He went to His home on high.

The pure in heart shall see, ah! yes,
They shall see the face of Him
Who dwells forever in ceaseless bliss
Between the cherubim.
Of her we love, this wondrous word
Is true in very deed.
’Tis the sight of her own, her loving Lord,
In her sightless eyes we read.

God bless her ever! we lift the prayer—
Our hearts would hold her fain
To guard her now from the weight of care,
To shield her life from pain.
And when at last an angel comes
To lead her into the King,
God give her a place in the best of homes
Where the choiring angels sing!

May the thin veil drop from the gentle eyes,
And by the King’s own grace
When she sees Him, clear, with no surprise,
May she have a sheltered place
In a little corner white and fair
And very near His feet,
And never a voice ’mid the voices there
Shall ring more true and sweet!

  1. From Nazareth
  2. O Christ, Forget Not Them Who Stand
  3. Ships Glide in at the Harbor’s Mouth, The
  4. Who Fain Would Follow Jesus

Sangster’s burial place