Le Blond cont…

I promised to write some more about that amazing mountaineering woman, Elizabeth Alice Frances Le Blond and, not wanting to disappoint anyone, here’s part two.

It’s important to note that she wasn’t just a woman for climbing big rocky hills. She also found time to write books on genealogy. She wrote a two volume work based on Charlotte Sophie, Countess Bentinck, an ancestor of hers. Charlotte was born in 1715 and was a descendent of William the Silent*.

The book is made up from letters that Charlotte wrote to her niece, and which Liz found in 1907, safely locked away in an old Dutch chest in Killincarrick House in Ireland. According to Liz, these letters were written by a “…highly cultivated, highly educated, widely read and brilliantly clever woman of the world, who was on friendly terms with many of the best known people in Europe.”

Liz hints at mysteries and scandals in the introduction, indicating the Dunkelgraf as being one of them. This is a wonderful little (possibly) urban legend which you can read about here.

Charlotte of the amazing hair and impressive dress sense

In order to complete the books, she carried out extensive research in the Netherlands and Germany. She did nothing by half!

We all know about Florence Nightingale but Liz was there too! Volunteering during WWI at a hospital in Dieppe and then, after returning to England, took charge of the appeal department of the British ambulance committee. At the conclusion of the war, she founded the British Empire Fund for the Restoration of Rheims Cathedral.

Always the one for gender equality, she went as far as to create a club for women called The Forum. It would appear that this no longer exists. At least I’ve not been able to find anything out about it!

She died in far flung Wales – Llandrindod Wells, to be exact – in 1934. An amazing woman with an equally amazing zest for life. She’s my hero!

Stopping for a quick breakfast on a mountain in Switzerland

* There’s a number of given reasons why William the Silent was called ‘the Silent’. The one I particularly like is because he refused to talk openly to the King of France about the hated Protestants in France at that time, preferring to remain silent on the matter.

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1 Response to Le Blond cont…

  1. mum cook says:

    What a very special lady i was one year old when she died. love mum

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