Hannah Cullwick

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HC wrote seventeen diaries between the years 1854 and 1873, plus numerous letters chronicling in detail her life as a lower servant, as well as her long cross-class courtship and eventual marriage to Arthur Munby . Whether one views her as exceptional or as typical of the one third of women between the ages of fifteen and twenty who were in service at this historical place and time, her writing offers a rare glimpse into the harsh material conditions of maids of all work, as well as the complex cultural intersections of class, gender, race, sexuality, labour, and the body as represented by a working-class woman in later Victorian England.
Cullwick, Hannah. “Introduction and Notes”. The Diaries of Hannah Cullwick, Victorian Maidservant, edited by Liz Stanley, Rutgers University Press, 1984, pp. 1 - 28, passim.
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Sepia toned photograph of Hannah Cullwick, shown from the waist up. She is slightly turned, with her arms crossed, and gaze into the distance with a slightly challenging expression. She is wearing an oversize suit jacket, a collared shirt and cravat; her hair is cut short.
"Hannah Cullwick" Retrieved from https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/d/db/Hannah_Cullwick_portrait_in_man.jpg/646px-Hannah_Cullwick_portrait_in_man.jpg. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal (CC0 1.0) Public Domain Dedication license. This work is in the public domain.

Milestones

26 May 1833
HC was born at Shifnal in Shropshire.
Cullwick, Hannah. “Introduction and Notes”. The Diaries of Hannah Cullwick, Victorian Maidservant, edited by Liz Stanley, Rutgers University Press, 1984, pp. 1 - 28, passim.
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Blain, Virginia, Patricia Clements, and Isobel Grundy, editors. The Feminist Companion to Literature in English: Women Writers from the Middle Ages to the Present. Yale University Press; Batsford, 1990.
December 1854
HC wrote her first diary while visiting with her aunt; she produced seventeen in all before ceasing in 1873.
Cullwick, Hannah. “Introduction and Notes”. The Diaries of Hannah Cullwick, Victorian Maidservant, edited by Liz Stanley, Rutgers University Press, 1984, pp. 1 - 28, passim.
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30 September 1873
HC completed her last diary.
Cullwick, Hannah. “Introduction and Notes”. The Diaries of Hannah Cullwick, Victorian Maidservant, edited by Liz Stanley, Rutgers University Press, 1984, pp. 1 - 28, passim.
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Cullwick, Hannah. The Diaries of Hannah Cullwick, Victorian Maidservant. Stanley, LizEditor , Rutgers University Press, 1984.
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9 July 1909
HC died of heart failure and senile decay at Shifnal in Shropshire.
Cullwick, Hannah. “Introduction and Notes”. The Diaries of Hannah Cullwick, Victorian Maidservant, edited by Liz Stanley, Rutgers University Press, 1984, pp. 1 - 28, passim.
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12 April 1984
Eight of HC 's diaries were published, edited by Liz Stanley .
Blackwell’s Online Bookshop.
Cullwick, Hannah. “Introduction and Notes”. The Diaries of Hannah Cullwick, Victorian Maidservant, edited by Liz Stanley, Rutgers University Press, 1984, pp. 1 - 28, passim.
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Biography

Some of the people HC served called her this stock name instead of bothering to learn or remember her real one.
Cullwick, Hannah. “Introduction and Notes”. The Diaries of Hannah Cullwick, Victorian Maidservant, edited by Liz Stanley, Rutgers University Press, 1984, pp. 1 - 28, passim.
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HC never went by the name Hannah Munby, although this is the name on her gravestone.
Cullwick, Hannah. “Introduction and Notes”. The Diaries of Hannah Cullwick, Victorian Maidservant, edited by Liz Stanley, Rutgers University Press, 1984, pp. 1 - 28, passim.
facing 153