Caroline Chisholm

Dr Carole Walker

10th May 2008

St Andrew's Hospital, Billing Road, Northampton

The 30th May is the bicentenary of Caroline Chishom's birth in Northampton in 1808. Caroline's life and work dedicated to the poor emigrant travelling to Australia is little known in Britain today. She opened a school for girls in India, and befriended single female emigrants arriving in Sydney in the early 1840s. She founded the Family Colonisation Loan Society and campaigned for better conditions on board emigrant ships. In Australia in the mid-1850s, Caroline helped organise Shelter Sheds (Chisholm Shakedowns) for those travelling to the gold fields. She wrote the novelette 'Little Joe'. Caroline, who came from a relatively ordinary family, went on to lead an extraordinary life.

After an early career as a personal assistant and raising a family, Carole returned to education, studying for a B.A. in English Literature at Loughborough University, and a Masters Degree in Victorian Studies at Leicester University. Whilst working on her dissertation for her Masters Degree, Carole came across the work of Caroline Chisholm, successfully completing a Doctorate on Caroline's life and work several years later.

This lecture followed the Annual General Meeting of the Society.

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