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Louisa May Alcott
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"Louisa May Alcott was born on 29 November, 1832; her father's 33rd birthday. She was the second of Amos and his wife Abba May's four daughters, and was brought up in Concord, Massachusetts. Educated at home Louisa was fascinated by books and from an early age recalls 'playing with books in my father's study - looking at pictures, pretending to read, and scribbling on blank pages whenever pen or pencil could be found'.
"Alcott never married, and many of her essays explore the possibilities of a single life for women. In 1862 she volunteered as a nurse in a Civil War army hospital in Washington but after only six weeks she contracted typhoid fever and was forced to return home. The break from her family and her experiences gave her the material for her first successful book, Hospital Sketches.
"The success of Little Women in 1868 brought both fame and the financial security she had so long desired for her family and she went on to write other stories in the same vein; An Old-Fashioned Girl (1870); Little Men (1871); Eight Cousins (1875); Rose in Bloom (1876); Jo's Boys (1886) and others.
"In 1871 Alcott visited Europe and on her return to Boston became involved with women's suffrage and temperance movements. Alcott died in Boston in 1888, the same day her father was buried."
Source: Penguin Web Site (http://www.futurenet.co.uk/Penguin/Authors/7.html). Accessed 10 June 1997.
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