CATHERINE BEECHER Biography - Writers


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Name: Catharine Esther Beecher                                                           
Born: September 6, 1800                                                                 
Died: May 12, 1878                                                                       
Catharine Esther Beecher (September 6, 1800 - May 12, 1878) was a noted educator,       
renowned for her forthright opinions on women's education as well as her                 
vehement support of the many benefits of the incorporation of a kindergarten             
into children's education.                                                               
Beecher, born in East Hampton, New York, was the daughter, of outspoken                 
religious leader Lyman Beecher. Her numerous other well-known family members             
include her sister Harriet Beecher Stowe, the 19th century abolitionist and             
writer most famous for her groundbreaking novel Uncle Tom's Cabin, and two               
brothers who were both renowned Congregationalist ministers, Henry Ward Beecher         
and Charles Beecher.                                                                     
She was educated at home until she was ten years old, when she was sent to a             
private school where she was taught the limited curriculum available to young           
women. The experience left her longing for additional opportunities for                 
education, and she taught herself subjects not commonly offered to women.               
To provide such educational opportunities for others, in 1823 Beecher opened the         
Hartford Female Seminary, where she taught until 1831. The private girls school         
in Hartford, Connecticut, had many well-known alumni, including Catharine's             
sister Harriet. Later, Catharine was engaged to marry Professor Alexander Fisher         
of Yale University, but he died before the wedding was to take place. In 1841           
Beecher published “A Treatise on Domestic Economy for the Use of Young Ladies at       
Home and at School a book which discussed the underestimated importance of               
women's roles in society. The book was edited and re-released the following year         
in its final form.