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Friday, 11 October, 2002, 08:29 GMT 09:29 UK
Town tribute to forgotten heroine
Caroline Chisholm $5
Caroline Chisholm was on the Australian $5 note
Northampton is to pay tribute to a woman philanthropist who is a national heroine in Australia but little-known in her home town.

A service will remember women's rights campaigner and prison reformer Caroline Chisholm.

Professor of Australian History at King's College London, Carl Bridge, is amazed that people in Northampton do not do more to remember her.

He said: "She is our equivalent of Grace Darling or Florence Nightingale or even Mother Teresa.

Helping orphans

"She is very well known indeed in Australia. We learn about her in school and she was on our five dollar note.

"One would have thought her home town would have heard of her."

Mrs Chisholm, daughter of a farmer, was born Caroline Jones in Northampton in 1808.

The Roman Catholic worked in India, where she founded a school, before eventually travelling to Australia.

There she became known as the "Emigrants Friend" - helping orphans, promoting women's rights and prison reform.

Almost unknown

She travelled round the country to find jobs and homes for about 11,000 migrants, most of them young women, and accepted no money for her work. She also raised nine children.

She died back in England in 1877, almost unknown and in poverty.

Her grave is in Northampton's Billing Road Ceremony.

A service to remember her will be held at Northampton's Roman Catholic Cathedral on Saturday.


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