Madame Sara Langley Hersey Derby

Sara Derby outlived two husbands, Dr. Ezekiel Hersey and Richard Derby, a wealthy shipping merchant from Salem, to inherit great wealth and a large farm, now the site of the South Shore Country Club. One thousand pounds of her inheritance from the doctor was given to Harvard to start the medical school. As she had no children, she was persuaded to leave her wealth to establish an independent academy to educate boys and girls, as Hingham’s tax-supported college preparatory school had closed in 1779. One year after her death, Derby Academy was established, today the oldest private co-educational secondary school in New England.

Sara Derby