Caroline Jones Chisholm was a well-known English philanthropist and humanitarian who worked to improve the lives of female immigrants in Australia. She was very helpful to young girls who didn’t have any money or jobs. Caroline gave these poor women a place to stay and helped them find jobs so they could make a living. Soon, she also helped young men. As she watched for people getting off ships from England, she became a familiar face on the dock. She went back to England and tried to get the government there to change the rules about how people could move to Australia. She started groups that gave immigrants to Australia half of the money they needed to get there. She got the government to let a lot of children and families who were left behind by emigrants travel for free. She even paid for ships to take the people to Australia. She helped and sometimes paid for small farmers and their families to move to land in the New South Wales area. She also asked the government to give them more land.
Early years and childhood
Caroline Chisholm was born in a village near Northampton, England, on May 30, 1808. William Jones, her father, was a successful farmer. William Jones’s fourth wife was her mother, Caroline. They got married and had seven children. She was the last of William Jones’s sixteen children.
Caroline Chisholm’s Career
In July 1833, when her husband was called back to duty by the East India Company, Caroline Chisholm went to Madras, India.
During her time there, she asked the Governor of Madras for permission to set up a school for young girls who were getting lost inside the barracks. He said no.
In 1834, she started the “Female School of Industry for the Daughters of European Soldiers.” This school taught housekeeping, cooking, nursing, reading, and writing to the daughters of soldiers and, later, to their wives.
In October 1838, Caroline went to Sydney, Australia, with her husband Archibald, who was on a two-year furlough.
They moved to Windsor, but soon found out how hard it was for immigrants, especially young women who had no friends, no money, and no jobs.
Archibald was called back to duty in 1840, but she stayed behind to set up a home for these women in Sydney. She also set up homes for them in the country, where families and young men later joined them.
Over the next seven years, she stayed in Australia and helped more than 11,000 people find homes and jobs. She started a place called the “Female Immigrant Home,” which helped more than 40,000 people over the next 38 years.
She talked to two “Legislative Council Committees” about how the immigrants were doing, but she never asked the government or financial institutions for money to help her run her homes.
She got people to pay for subscriptions to help families and people, no matter what religion they were from.
Archibald got out of the Army because he was sick in 1845, and he went to Australia to be with Caroline.
Caroline and Archibald used their own money to travel all over New South Wales and get more than 600 statements from people who were already living there to encourage new immigrants.
In 1846, she and her husband went back to live in England. She put some of these ideas in a pamphlet called “Comfort for the Poor: Met Three Times a Day.”
She testified before two “House of Lords Select Committees” and was able to get government help for some of the things she was trying to do.
Through her work, the families of convicts and the children of emigrants who had been left behind were able to go to Australia for free.
With the help of Sir Sydney Herbert, Lord Shaftesbury, and Wyndham Harding FRS, she started the “Family Colonization Loan Society” in 1849 at her home in Charlton Crescent, Islington.
Archibald went back to Australia in 1851 and became the “Honorary Colonial Agent.” His job was to help the immigrants and get the society’s loans paid back. Caroline stayed in England to do her work.
With the help of this group, she made sure that the more than 3,000 people who were going to Australia by ship had a place to stay. The “Passenger Act” got better because she kept pushing for better conditions on ships.
During her time in England, she traveled all over the country, went to France and Italy, and met Pope Pius IX.
Caroline went back to Australia in 1854, and when she saw how the prospectors and their families lived in the Victorian gold fields, she was horrified. She helped build places for the gold prospectors to rest and eat along the way to the gold fields.
Caroline went back and forth between her job in Melbourne and her home and store in Kyneton. In 1858, she had to go back to Sydney because her illness was getting worse.
By the end of 1859 and the beginning of 1860, her health had gotten better, and she gave talks about giving small farmers more land.
Archibald took their younger children back to England in 1865, and Caroline took her oldest son back to England in 1866.
Personal History and Legacies
When she was 22, she married Archibald Chisholm, who was more than ten years older than her.
She got married and had eight kids.
In England and Australia, there are a lot of schools, neighborhoods, and government offices named after her.
Caroline Jones Chisholm passed away in England on March 25, 1877. She had five children after she died.
Her Humanitarian Work
She worked hard to improve the lives of immigrants, small farmers, and gold prospectors in Australia.
Estimated Net worth
Caroline is one of the wealthiest civil rights leaders and is on the list of the most well-known civil rights leaders. Based on what we found on Wikipedia, Forbes, and Business Insider, Caroline Chisholm has a net worth of about $1.5 million.