Steel, Flora Annie Webster, 1847-1929

Alternative names
Birth 1847-04-02
Death 1929-04-12

Biographical notes:

English novelist.

From the description of Autograph letter signed : Bromsgrove, to Isabel, [n.d.]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270670067

Flora Annie Steel (1847-1929) was a British novelist and short story writer. Although she received very little formal education, she was allowed free run of her parents' library and was known for her strong personality and boundless energy. She married government official Henry Steel in 1867 at the age of twenty, and they left for India within twenty-four hours of the ceremony. Steel spent the next twenty-two years as a tireless organizer of community enterprises wherever she and her husband were posted. She immersed herself in the lives of the local population, learned the local language and displayed a genuine if somewhat paternalistic interest in the lives of the people of India, especially the women. Steel began writing short stories reflecting her experiences and collecting Indian folk tales toward the end of her time in India, though only one book, Wide Awake Stories (1884), was published before she left in 1889. She enjoyed a long friendship and business association with the publisher William Heinemann, wrote copiously and was well-received by the British public. At least half of her numerous novels and short stories were concerned with Indian or Anglo-Indian life.

From the description of Flora Annie Steel manuscript. (University of North Carolina at Greensboro, University Libraries). WorldCat record id: 429908586


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  • Women authors, English--19th century


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