Rosanne L. Higgins grew up in Buffalo, New York.  Her experiences traveling in both the United States and in Europe as a child resulted in a love of history and cultural diversity from an early age.  She entered graduate school in 1990 as an anthropology student and studied the relationship between biology and poverty during the nineteenth century.  Her main interest was the institutionalized poor.  In 1998 she earned a Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University at Buffalo.


In the spring of 2012, she was invited to join the Erie County Poorhouse Cemetery project, undertaken by the Department of Anthropology at the University of Buffalo. While writing her dissertation in the mid 1990's, Rosanne got to know many of the inmates of the institutions in Western New York as she pieced together what little could be told of their lives while researching their deaths. For over 20 years she had a desire to the tell the other side of the story in a way that would be accessible to more than just the scholarly community. Rosanne's need to tell their tale has resulted in her novel, Orphans and Inmates, which is the first in a series chronicling fictional accounts of poorhouse residents inspired by the historical data. The book Orphans and Inmates is followed by A Whisper of Bones ,The Seer and the Scholar and A Lifetime Again.  The fifth book in the series, The Girl on the Shore,  will be out December 14, 2017.