Part of the American History & Genealogy Project

Sara Agnes Rice Pryor 1830 ~ 1912


Sara Agnes Rice Pryor

The Southern woman-writer has become, of late years, an important factor in the literary life of New York. One who is perhaps at present better known in the first circles of society in New York than in literature, as yet, is Mrs. Roger A. Pryor, the lovely wife of Judge Pryor, of the Court of Common Pleas.

 Mrs. Pryor is known in New York as the writer of charming and brilliant feuilletons for the most prominent society journal there, but she invariably publishes over a pen-name, so that, outside the circle who penetrated the secret of her nom-de plume, she is best known as a society woman. She has also published many sketches and short stories. "The Story of a Persian Rug" was copied widely in English periodicals, and was the true story of an exquisite Persian carpet that lies before the hearth of her pretty drawing room. Mrs. Pryor has refused the most flattering offers from editors to write over her own name, for probably there is no one who can write more cleverly and authoritatively on social life in New York than she. She has no methods of work, writing when she feels the inclination.

Mrs. Pryor was a Southern heiress, born to every imaginable luxury, and never a life looked more hedged in with happiness than hers, yet, when the war wrecked and stranded the fortunes of the family, no bourgeois housewife ever performed heavier duties to a large family, ever sewed more diligently on her children's little garments, than this brave and brilliant woman in that dark period after the war when so many great fortunes were swept away.

Through the efforts of Mrs. Pryor a handsome sum has been added to the Mary Washington Monument Association fund, and this is most gratifying to the Daughters of the American Revolution, as one of the first working objects placed before the Daughters by an early resolution of the society was assistance to be given to this Mary Washington fund. It is a noble cause, in which women are called upon to honor a woman who displayed high qualities of character under conspicuous circumstances one who combined tenderness with strength, and dignity with simplicity, as found in the individuality of Mary Washington.

Mrs. Pryor's services to the Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution cannot be compassed in this brief sketch. She was the first regent of the New York City chapter. She organized it and led it on to success under trying circumstances. After serving for over a year she resigned on account of uncertain health, amid the regrets of the chapter. As vice-president-general of the National Society, and a member of the New York City chapter, she is still active in her efforts for the organization. Mrs. Pryor's home in New York is a charming place, where, in her artistic drawing-room, the hospitable traditions of her family are maintained, and at her weekly receptions one may meet many agreeable and eminent persons.

Women of America

Source: The Part Taken by Women in American History, By Mrs. John A. Logan, Published by The Perry-Nalle Publishing Company, Wilmington, Delaware, 1912.


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