Louisa May Alcott (1832 – 1888)

Inspiration for Activism!

  • Proponent of human rights, abolitionist, spokesperson for children and families, and a nurse.
  • Became a writer to provide income for her impoverished family.
  • At the age of thirty began service as a nurse at the Union Hospital at Georgetown in December, 1862.
  • Author of a book, published in 1863, about Civil War era nursing called Hospital Sketches (available here; full text available here)
  • Authored “Little Women” in 1868 – a book that is really about the empowerment of women and girls around the world.
  • Challenged gender roles and stereotypes; wrote fiery novels under pen name A.M. Barnard; is known to have stated: “I am more than half-persuaded that I am a man’s soul put by some freak of nature into a woman’s body … because I have fallen in love with so many pretty girls and never once the least bit with any man.”

More information here and here and here and here

1940 Louisa May Alcott 5c stamp

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