Dorchester Atheneum
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Isabel Barrows
Isabel Hayes Chapin Barrows
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 Isabel Hayes Chapin Barrows (Mrs. Samuel J. Barrows) (1845-1915).

Isabel was an Opthamologist who spoke Russian. She was an independent and sophisticated woman of many progressive ideas; supporter of Booker T. Washington; interested in Indian rights, Tuskeegee Institute, women's prison reform, among many other reforms. She was the first woman to work as a stenographer for Congress, and the first woman to be private secretary to the head of the State Department for Secretary of State William Seward (1867). She was for a time on the faculty of Howard University. She wrote extensively on a number of subjects.

She was a friend of Lucy Stone and "aunt" to Alice Stone Blackwell, responsible for introducing Alice to the Armenian Movement and was a leader of that movement in Boston; Julia Ward Howe was the president of the Friends of Armenia (founded by Alice Stone Blackwell with Ohannes Chatschumian, thus launching one of America's first international human rights movements). Isabel was also a journalist and collaborated in editing The Little Grandmother of the Russian Revolution with Alice Stone Blackwell. She wrote a biography of Samuel J. Barrows, her second husband who was minister at First Parish, Dorchester from 1871-1881, when he resigned to become editor of the Christian Register (1881-1896); then served as Congressman from Mass. 10th district.



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Here are some images from the Atheneum archive related to this topic. Click on any of these images to open a slideshow of all 1498 images.
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Created: December 30, 2010   Modified: December 30, 2010