This is one of my favourite autographs from within the Shakespeare's Birthday Book once owned by an Irish Surgeon/Doctor Thomas Leslie Crooke 1861-1943.
153 years ago Susan L Mitchell was born Dec 05 1866 born Carrick -On-Shannon Co Leitrim.
After the death of her father in 1872 she moved to Dublin. was raised by her aunts who later went with Susan to Birr hometown of the Mitchell family.
1899-1900 Susan lived with family of J B Yeats in Sligo ( While undergoing treatment in London)
Many of the Mitchell family autographs are in the Birthday Book.
She was once secretly engaged to Lieutenant George Douglas Crooke July 02 1865 Suffolk Regt Killed in action at Tseri Kando Pass Nov 1897. A memorial is on the wall at St Marys Church. Bury-St-Edmunds, Suffolk. he was aged 32 years
( Brother to Thomas). Although a military man his rank was not regarded high enough to be accepted, so a marriage never took place. Susan never married after George was killed in action.
Columnist of the Irish Homestead ,Sub editor The Irish Statesman.
Susan composed a song for the United Irishwomen "To The Daughters Of Erin" 1910.
Her Poetic writings produced The Celtic Christmas, The Living Chalice from 1902 among the many others.
Friends with George "AE" Moore and Constance Markieviecz, Susan became a central figure in Dublin's vibrant artistic circles. J B Yeats painted portraits of Susan which hang in a mall in Sligo.
I can only imagine what it would have been like to live with J B Yeats and W B Yeats and family during such an era of change and advancements.
Sadly Susan's illnesses worsened she went through several surgeries. Died on March 04 1926 ( Ironically on the birthday
of Dr Thomas Leslie Crooke March 04 1861)
I admire a quote of hers " I damn Respectability " in an era of time of properness. Susan was out spoken an outstanding woman of her day.
Acknowledgement to Hilary Pyle who wrote a great book "The Red Headed Rebel" the life of Susan L Mitchell.
Was also very fortunate that a photo was sent to me of the statue tribute to Susan L Mitchell. I now often wonder
how many people would walk pass this not stopping to take a minute to think Who was Susan L Mitchell.
I feel very privileged as the keeper of The Shakespeare's Birthday Book and through this the life of Dr T L Crooke,
a part of Ireland's history in the palm of my hand.
From Shane Patrick Duffy Christchurch NZ.