Hannah and Chandler Darlington
by Chris Densmore
In 1841, ownership of The Pines passed on to Chandler and Hannah Monaghan
Darlington. Like Dr. Bartholomew Fussell and Dr. Sumner Stebbins before them, the
Darlington's were committed abolitionists as well as participants in "the trackless trail"
of the Underground Railroad. The abolitionists of Kennett and of Chester County
generally were unique at this time in having men and women as equal co-workers. Ten
years before the First Woman's Rights Convention at Seneca Falls in 1848, the
abolitionists of Kennett recognized the equal value of men and women in the
abolitionist movement. However, they did not formally address the issue of woman's
rights until the Woman's Rights Convention held in West Chester in 1852. This was also
joint meeting of men and women. The President was female, but the four Vice
Presidents consisted of two women and two men. Chandler Darlington was one.
Hannah Monaghan Darlington was one of the Secretaries. The
Convention believed that men and women were equal, but did leave some room for
differences between the sexes. "Resolved, If it be true that it is woman's province to
soothe the angry passions and calm the violent feelings of man, we know of no place
where she would find a riper harvest awaiting her labor, than in the halls of our National
and State Legislatures." No wonder Mary Dugan was drawn to the stories about people
like Hannah and Chandler Darlington of The Pines.