My two favorite pieces are Hospital Sketches about nursing, and a short story about the author being bothered by a woman who collects a grasshopper off the lawns of famous writers, and the lengths the author will go to in order to rid herself of such pests (not the grasshoppers). I think the grasshopper story is in Life at Plumfiled. After first reading it, the story seemed to vanish from existence. Anybody provide a citation for it?
Louisa was 20 years older than my Emily (The Case Book of Emily Lawrence). Emily's father would have been friends with Louisa's father Bronson Alcott. In fact many of the episodes in Emily's life are straight from biographies of Louisa. In the "Lothrop Brigade", the story of the Professor coming home from an abolitionist meeting with a bloodied head? That was Bronson Alcott. Emily's older sister Anna tells of dinner with the James family, where the men refused to let the women get a word in edgewise. This was Louisa's experience.
Louisa served as a nurse in Washington during the Civil War. In Hospital Sketches she describes the whole experience, from her first interview in Boston, to her return home when she was too ill to continue the work. Perhaps this is why I chose to set many of my Emily stories in Washington.
Louisa saw herself as caretaker for her father, a man who couldn't seem to care for himself or his family. Bronson died March 4, 1888. Louisa died March 6, 1888. It was said at the time she followed him into death because he still needed her.