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Adam [née King], Ruth Augusta (1907–1977), writer and feminist, was born on 14 December 1907 at the vicarage in Arnold, a mining parish in Nottinghamshire, the second of the four children of the Revd Rupert William King (1874–1955), a Church of England...

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Dame Margery Irene Corbett Ashby (1882–1981) by Edmond Xavier Kapp from the collection of Patricia Kapp

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Ashby, Dame Margery Irene Corbett (1882–1981), feminist and internationalist, was born on 19 April 1882 in London, the eldest of three children (two girls and a boy) of Charles Henry Joseph Corbett, businessman and landowner of Woodgate, Danehill, Sussex, and his wife, Marie...

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Auld [née Jardine; other married name Marshall], Mary (1893–1984), local politician and women's organizer, was born on 8 July 1893 in Main Street, Lockerbie, Dumfriesshire, the fourth child of seven born to Francis Jardine, clog maker, and his wife, Agnes Wallace. She attended ...

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Balgarnie, Florence (1856–1928), feminist and temperance campaigner, was born at 2 Belle Vue Terrace, Scarborough, Yorkshire, on 19 August 1856, the eldest of three daughters of the Revd Robert Balgarnie (1826–1899) and his wife, Martha Rooke. Her father, minister of the South Cliff Congregational Church...

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Barrett, Rosa Mary (1855–1936), social reformer and feminist, was born in Jamaica, the youngest of the four surviving children of William Garland Barrett (1812–1865), Congregational minister and sometime missionary to Jamaica, and his wife, Martha, née Fletcher (1811?–1893). One brother was the leading Congregationalist ...

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Barbara Leigh Smith Bodichon (1827–1891) by André Adolphe Eugène Disderi © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Bodichon, Barbara Leigh Smith (1827–1891), artist and women's activist, was born on 8 April 1827 in Whatlington, near Robertsbridge, Sussex, the eldest of the five children of the radical MP Benjamin Smith (1783–1860) [see under Smith, William (1756-1835)] and Anne Longden (1801–1834)...

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Josephine Elizabeth Butler (1828–1906) by George Frederic Watts, 1894 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Butler [née Grey], Josephine Elizabeth (1828–1906), social reformer and women's activist, born on 13 April 1828 at Milfield Hill, Glendale, Northumberland, was the fourth daughter and seventh child of John Grey (1785–1868) and Hannah Eliza, née Annett (d. 1860). She was unusual among nineteenth-century feminists in having family ties to the whig aristocracy: ...

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Cornwallis, Caroline Frances (1786–1858), author and feminist, was born on 12 July 1786 at Wittersham, Kent, the second of two daughters of Revd William Cornwallis (1751–1827), rector of Elham and Wittersham in Kent. Her mother, Mary (née Harris), wrote a number of religious works, including ...

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Cousins [née Gillespie], Margaret Elizabeth (1878–1954), social reformer and women's activist, was born on 7 November 1878 at Boyle, co. Roscommon, Ireland, the first child of Margaret Shera and her husband, Joseph Gillespie (d. 1930). Her father was the clerk of petty sessions in the ...

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Crawshay [née Yeates], Rose Mary (1828–1907), educationist and feminist, was born at Caversham Grove, Oxfordshire. Her mother died when she was young and her father, Wilson Yeates, remarried two years later. She was educated at home by a governess. At the age of eighteen she met her husband, the 29-year-old ...

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Charlotte Despard (1844–1939) by Mary Edis, exh. 1916 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Despard [née French], Charlotte (1844–1939), feminist and socialist reformer, was born on the family estate at Ripple Vale in Kent on 15 June 1844, the third child and third daughter of the family of five daughters and one son of Captain John Tracey William French (...

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Emily Faithfull (1835–1895) by Leonida Caldesi & Co. © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Faithfull, Emily (1835–1895), publisher and women's activist, was born on 27 May 1835 at Headley rectory, Surrey, the youngest of five daughters and the last of eight children of Ferdinand Faithfull, rector of Headley, and his wife, Elizabeth Mary Harrison, née Timberlake. Little is known of her early life, but she was educated at home and attended a school in ...

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Gordon [née Ogilvie], Dame Maria Matilda (1864–1939), geologist and women's activist, was born on 30 April 1864 in Monymusk, Aberdeenshire, elder daughter among seven children of Revd Alexander Ogilvie (1830/31–1904), schoolmaster, and his wife, Maria Matilda Nicol. The family moved to Aberdeen...

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Gough [married names Miller, Aberle], (Eleanor) Kathleen (1925–1990), social anthropologist and feminist, was born on 16 August 1925 at Hunsingore, near Wetherby, Yorkshire, daughter and youngest child of Albert Gough (1888–1970) and his second wife, Eleanor, née Umpleby (1892–1965), a devout Methodist who sang and recited in local chapels. Her father became village blacksmith in 1914 and played a major role in introducing combines to ...

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Gough, Mary Fisher (1832–1896), women's activist, was born on 9 May 1832, probably in Dublin; she was one of the five children of Josiah Richard Gough and Deborah Fisher. An Irish Quaker, she lived and died, unmarried, in Dublin. Gough was a signatory to the 1866 petition for women's suffrage (as, it would appear, were her mother, ...