Margaret Chappellsmith (1806-1883)
lecturer and writer

Born Margaret Reynolds in London, her first economic and feminist writings appeared in 1836. In 1839, she married an artist named John Chappellsmith. During 1838 to 1843, Margaret was a salaried lecturer in the Owenite social-reform movement. For an excellent study of the role of women in this movement, including both Margaret Chappellsmith and Emma Martin, see

Barbara Taylor, Eve and the New Jerusalem, Pantheon Books, New York, 1983.

In 1850, the Chappellsmiths moved to New Harmony, Indiana. Until her death in 1883, they resided there in semi-isolation, leaving little trace except for nearly 300 articles published in the radical Boston Investigator.

My interest in the Chappellsmiths stems from the fact that so little is known about this remarkable couple. A summary of my findings will appear in the following:

C. Kimberling, "Margaret Chappellsmith," in Dictionary of Labour Biography, vol. 10, John Saville and Joyce M. Bellamy, editors, Macmillan, London, (1999?).

In the event that you have an interest in either Margaret or John Chappellsmith - or if you are in touch with source materials, especially photographs or portraits, please contact me at In return, I'll be happy to send you (p)reprints of my longer articles on the Chappellsmiths.

John Chappellsmith
New Harmony Scientists, Educators, Writers & Artists
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