Newsletter – June 2010

June 15th, 2010 by JCope

The speaker at our June meeting was author Ina Taylor talking on ‘The Macdonald Women’, Victorian sisters who were wives or mothers of four men of distinction.  Ina gave us an intimate portrait of their strict upbringing in the North and Midlands as the daughters of a Methodist minister.  A chance meeting introduced them to the world of the Pre-Raphaelites through Edward Burne-Jones and the marriages which followed gave the sisters a unique opportunity to inspire four very different, but equally great men.  Georgie eventually married Burne-Jones and could count William Morris and George Eliot among her friends, while Agnes married Edward Poynter (later Sir Edward) who rose to the heights of the establishment art world.  Alice married John Kipling and later gave birth to their son Rudyard.  Louisa met Alfred Baldwin at Bewdley and eventually married him, later giving birth to Stanley who was to serve as Prime Minister three times.

This was an absolutely absorbing evening with strong local connections: Ina knew her subject inside out, having carried out considerable research for her book on the sisters.  Four amazing women behind four great men!

Comments are closed.