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Arnold, Ethel Margaret (1864/5–1930), journalist, author, and lecturer on female suffrage, was the daughter of Thomas Arnold (1823–1900), teacher and English scholar, and his wife, Julia Sorell (1826–1888). Her grandfather was Thomas Arnold (1795–1842), headmaster of Rugby School, her uncle Matthew Arnold (1822–1888)...

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Banks, Isabella Varley [née Isabella Varley; known as Mrs G. Linnaeus Banks] (1821–1897), public lecturer and writer, was born on 25 March 1821, at Oldham Street, Manchester, the daughter of James Varley, chemist (d. 1842), and his wife, Amelia Daniels. Her grandfather, ...

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Buckley [married name Fisher], Arabella Burton (1840–1929), popularizer of science and writer, was born on 24 October 1840 in Brighton, the daughter of John Wall Buckley, vicar of St Mary's, Paddington Green, and his wife, Elizabeth (d. 1889), daughter of Thomas Burton...

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Caplin, Roxey Ann [formerly Emily Roxey Caplin] (1793–1888), corset maker, writer, and lecturer on health, was born in Canada, the daughter of English settlers; Canadian Indians taught her canoeing and swimming as a child. Probably trained as a milliner, she married about 1835, and by 1839 was living in ...

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Carlile, Elizabeth Sharples (1803–1852), freethought lecturer and advocate of women's rights, was one of six children born to Ann and Richard Sharples, a counterpane manufacturer, in Bolton, Lancashire, probably late in 1803. The family was pious and prosperous, the children received a good education, and ...

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Chappellsmith [née Reynolds], Margaret (1806–1883), socialist lecturer, was born in February 1806 in Aldgate, London. Her family was probably upper working class and she had at least three sisters and two brothers. She was a staunch Baptist until her early adulthood, when a friend of her sister's introduced her to the ideas of ...

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Craigen, Jessie Hannah (1834/5–1899), public speaker, was the daughter of a Scottish sea captain and an Italian actress, names unknown. Though she once remarked that her childhood was spent in London, she also variously claimed roots in Scotland and the north of England...

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Fowler, Lydia Folger (1822–1879), physician, author, and lecturer, was born on 5 May 1822 at Nantucket, Massachusetts, USA, the sixth child of Gideon Folger, mechanic, manufacturer, shipowner, and farmer, and his wife, Eunice Macy Folger. She received her early education in Nantucket, where she developed interests in mathematics and astronomy, and later she studied for one year at ...

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Miller, Florence Fenwick (1854–1935), journalist and public lecturer, was born on 5 November 1854 in London, the eldest in the family of two sons and one daughter of Captain John Miller (1817–1895), a sea captain in the merchant marine, and his wife, Eleanor, formerly Estabrook (1823–1890)...

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Gertrude von Petzold (1876–1952) by Burton & Sons, 1904 photograph courtesy of John Hewerdine

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Petzold, Gertrude von (1876–1952), Unitarian minister and public lecturer, was born in Thorn, East Prussia, of aristocratic ancestry. Her father was an officer in the Prussian army, while her mother instructed her thoroughly in the Lutheran catechism. After teacher training at a seminary, she soon became impatient of the limited opportunities afforded to women in ...