Isabella Ormston Ford

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Isabella Ormston Ford was a dedicated labour activist, suffragette, and anti-war advocate at the turn of the nineteenth century whose writing advocates her socialist-feminist ideals. She wrote newspaper articles, pamphlets, short stories, and novels, all in the service of her ideas for social reform, and continually underlined the importance of keeping the labour movement and women's movement together. She also lectured widely on behalf of the causes near to her heart throughout Britain and occasionally in Europe. For several years she regularly contributed to the Labour Leader and the Yorkshire Factory Times, and maintained a column in the socialist Leeds Forward. She sat on the executive committee for several key national organizations in these movements: the National Administrative Council of the Independent Labour Party , the National Union of Women's Suffrage Societies , and the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom .
Black and white photo of Isabella Ford in 1924, sitting reading a book with a telephone beside her. Her body is in profile but she turns her head to face the camera. Her dark hair is parted in the middle and pulled back.
"Isabella Ford" 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

23 May 1855
Isabella Ormston Ford , who wrote under her birth name, was born at St John's Hill, Claredon Road, in Headingley (a suburb of Leeds), the youngest of eight children.
Matthew, Henry Colin Gray, Brian Harrison, and Lawrence Goldman, editors. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.
8 January-14 April 1890
IOF 's first publication, a novel entitled Miss Blake of Monkshalton, was serialized in Murray's Magazine. In this form it appeared both in New York and London, ascribed to her by initials only, before volume publication the same year.
“19th Century British Library Newspapers”. Gale: 19th Century British Library Newspapers.
13105 (8 January 1890): 7
Matthew, Henry Colin Gray, Brian Harrison, and Lawrence Goldman, editors. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.
“19th Century British Library Newspapers”. Gale: 19th Century British Library Newspapers.
1362 (16 January 1890): 3
“19th Century British Library Newspapers”. Gale: 19th Century British Library Newspapers.
4131 (12 April 1890): 2
16 October 1895
IOF 's second novel, On the Threshold, which depicts competing socialist and feminist ideals, became her best-known work.
Matthew, Henry Colin Gray, Brian Harrison, and Lawrence Goldman, editors. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.
“19th Century British Library Newspapers”. Gale: 19th Century British Library Newspapers.
38487 (16 October 1895): 8
14 July 1924
IOF died in her sleep at her home at Adel Willows in Leeds.
Hannam, June. Isabella Ford. Basil Blackwell, 1989.
xii, 201

Biography

Birth and Family

23 May 1855
Isabella Ormston Ford , who wrote under her birth name, was born at St John's Hill, Claredon Road, in Headingley (a suburb of Leeds), the youngest of eight children.
Matthew, Henry Colin Gray, Brian Harrison, and Lawrence Goldman, editors. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.