Feminists of Hastings


Born Elizabeth Darby Adams in 1827, aged 22 she married Carl Julius Gozna Eiloart, a wealthy solicitor. Between 1851 and 1866, she gave birth to twelve children, five of whom did not survive childhood. Her son Ernest, a barrister, published 'The Laws Relating to Women' in 1875.

In 1858 she persuaded Marylebone Swimming Baths to be restricted to ladies only every Wednesday and to engage a female teacher to teach them to swim. She was a shareholder in, and a writer for, the Englishwoman's Journal from its foundation in 1858, writing under the pseudonyms 'Asterisk' and 'E'. She became its editor in 1864, the year her series of long, insightful, beautifully-written articles appeared on the subject of 'Woman's work in the World's Clothing'.

Born in London, she lived variously in Hertfordshire, Hackney and Suffolk; in the 1870s she lived at The Elms, Chiswick, and by the 1880s she was living at Elsinore, 12 Dane Road, St Leonards. Whilst living there, she and Carl attended the meetings of the new Hastings women's suffrage group, and in 1884 joined its committee. (This was, clearly, a longstanding interest, for in 1878 she had been quoted on a suffrage leaflet.) She also addressed meetings and wrote letters to the local paper on the subject, and travelled up to London to attend meetings of the national group.

She stayed in St Leonards for at least a decade, till her husband's death in 1895. She then moved to 23 Wellington Road Brighton, where she held suffrage meetings in her drawing room, and where she died in 1898.

As well as being a mother and a feminist, she was a prolific novelist, producing at least 26 books, mostly for children.

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