Pogson, Sarah (also Sarah Pogson Smith)


Dramatic Workspogson

The Young Carolinians; or, Americans in Algiers (1818)

The Female Enthusiast (1807)

The Young Carolinians; or, Americans in Algiers (1818)

Print & Publication History

Published anonymously (“by a Lady”); printed by Archibald E. Miller, Queen Street, near the N. W. corner of Meeting Street, Charleston, South Carolina

The play appeared in Pogson’s collection Essays, Religious, Moral, Dramatic and Poetical Addressed to Youth, and Published for a Benevolent Purpose by a Lady.

Genre & Structure

  • Comedy in five acts, interspersed with songs
  • Prefatory material to Essays, Religious, Moral, Dramatic and Poetical
    • Dedication: “To Miss Maria Middleton,” Pogson describes herself as the “affectionate friend and god-mother” of her addressee; the dedication includes some details on the author’s troubled private and financial circumstances

Gender Relevance

Negotiation of vices and virtues of men and women; (male) rake reformed; marriage

Key Words & Themes

Captivity narrative from the perspective of a Southern planter; wide range of characters (different regional, cultural and social backgrounds, including an African servant, several Turkish characters (portrayed as hypocritical barbarians), and pirates); otherness; Christian slaves; equality of intellect rather than rank as the crucial foundation of marriage (But: cross-class marriage is not actually implemented)

Additional Information

Authorship: According to the Early American Imprints collection, the play is variously attributed to Maria Pinckney and Sarah Pogson Smith. Amelia Howe Kritzer points out that a copyright ledger established Pogson as the author of Essays, Religious, Moral, Dramatic and Poetical and thus the comedy.


Early American Imprints, Series 2, no. 45341

Secondary Sources

Kritzer, Amelia Howe. Introduction. Plays by Early American Women, 1775-1850. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1995.1-28.