Clara Collet 1860 -1948
Home Women's Work Karl Marx Charles Booth George Gissing Churchill Jack the Ripper Chronology
An Educated Working Woman ISBN 07130 0241 7


Clara Collet born 10 September to Jane (1820-1908) and Collet Dobson Collet (1813-1898). Lived in Hornsey Lane, Islington


Cambridge Local Examinations (like GCSE's) opened to girls


Barbara Bodichon, Reasons for the Enfranchisement of Women

Emily Davis, The Higher Education of Women


Girton College, Cambridge founded

John Stuart Mill, On the Subjection of Women

probably the year she met Eleanor Marx


Women first allowed to become Civil Servants to work in telegraph offices -- they were cheaper to employ and better educated than their male counterparts.

Forster's Education Act

First Married Women's Property Act


Paris Commune


Collet sent to Calais to learn French


Collet began at North London Collegiate School


Collet took her Cambridge Local Examinations in financial difficulties


The Dogberry Club formed by Clara and Eleanor Marx


University College London allows women to take its degrees

The Collet family by now based at 7 Coleridge Road, Crouch End

Clara Collet begins work as a teacher at Wyggeston Girls School, Leicester


Collet passes her first BA degree


Collet passes her final BA degree


Ernest Gimson apprenticed to Barradale's Architects


Married Women's Property Act

Socialist Democratic Foundation founded (Marxist)

Clara attended a lecture given by Arnold Toynbee


Andrew Mearns, The Bitter Cry of Outcast London

Collet passes her Teacher's diploma

"EW" proposes to Clara


Collet elected to council of Charity Organisation Society

Eleanor Marx began to live openly with Edward Aveling

Fabian Society formed

Collet sees William Morris deliver a lecture


Collet moved to London in order to begin her MA degree in Political Economy

Met with Eleanor Marx accidentally - they had had a difference of opinion


Ernest Gimson moved to London to work for J D Sedding

Charles Booth began his work Life and Labour of the People of London

Beatrice Webb (nee Potter) worked for Booth

Collet obtained MA and won Joseph Hume scholarship (£20 per year for 3 years- continued to study mathematics)


Collet gave lectures to supplement studies


Jack the Ripper murdered five or six women in the autumn of this year

Clara Collet took up residency in the East End in autumn in order to begin collecting statistics for Booth's chapter on 'Women's Work'


Collet engaged in 'Balfour's Battersea Enquiry'


Elected vice president of Toynbee Economic Club

Gissing met Edith Underwood. Read 'Life and Labour'

Clara collected information for Booth's work on Pensions. Worked at Ashby-de-la-Zouch workhouse


Had probably written 'Undercurrents' and 'Over the Way' by this time under pseudonym 'Clover King'


The Novels of George Gissing' lecture delivered at the Ethical Society

Gissing commented in his diary that he had heard that someone had given a lecture on his work

Made a Fellow of the RSS

Carries out work as Assistant Commissioner for the Royal Commission on Labour


Began employment as Labour Correspondent for the Civil Service at the Board of Trade

18 July met with George Gissing for the first time - on the River Thames at Richmond October


Visited Switzerland in December


Married women prevented from continuing in employment in the Civil Service.

Moved to 36 Berkeley Road, Crouch End


Gissing took Walter to live in Wakefield

Gissing met H. G. Wells for first time

Collet stopped in Wakefield to visit Walter on her way home from a work trip. Edith very upset


Gissing separated from Edith - traveled to Italy

Clara travelled to Ireland

Spent time with Charles Booth at Gracedieu Manor at Leicester


Gissing in Italy until spring. Clara sent him a portion of her diary in February. He met with Rosy Williams (Beatrice Webb's sister) in March. He returned to England in May. Collet destroyed Gissing's letters to her from 10 February 1898 until 22 July 1899. She destroyed (or did not write) her diary for almost whole period of her relationship with Gissing - from 1891 - Dec 1898 (when she made entries in October and December and then no more until June 1904 six months after Gissing's death.)

Gissing met with Gabrielle Fleury in July

Collet's father died


Collet promised Gissing she would be come Fleury's friend. Gissing and Fleury live together as man and wife. Collet visited Gissing and Fleury in Paris in October.


Moved to 90 Woodside, Wimbledon

Ernest Gimson married Emily Thompson

Collet on holiday to Norway


Working for the BAAS on the 'Committee on the Economic Effect of Legislation Affecting Women's Work'


Educated Working Women published drawing together six essays

Collet began an appeal for fund to increase the number of staff teaching economics and statistics at the UCL

Collet involved with the Craft School

Edith Gissing committed to an asylum. Alfred Gissing moved to foster parents in Cornwall


Collet promoted to Senior Investigator at the Labour Department

Reviews 'The Strength of the People' by Helen Bosanquet in Economic Review

28 December George Gissing died at Ispoure in South West France


Began year of dispute with H G Wells and Algernon Gissing re Veranilda

Gabrielle came to stay with Collet in May

Collet attended Booth's celebratory dinner at the Savoy, plus a trip to the opera

Living at 4 Vernon Chambers, Theobald's Road


Lloyd George President of the Board of Trade

Collet Secretary of Economic Club


Wrote report to the Earnings and Hours Enquiry


Arranged for Walter Gissing to work for Ernest Gimson

Attended NUWW conference on Women's Work


Sweated Industry Bill - dealings with James Ramsay MacDonald

Collet gave evidence to the Fair Wages Committee

Clara's mother died

Churchill the new President of the Board of Trade (when he was a Liberal)

Collet visited Alfred Gissing in Exeter


Has dinner most Fridays or Saturdays with Mr Ibry with whom she has become friendly

Labour Exchange Act

Trade Boards' Act - Collet gave evidence - resulted in improved wages for 'sweaters'


Resigned from Civil Service because of disagreement over implementation of the Labour Exchange Act. Withdrew her resignation after talk with Llewellyn Smith.


The Private life of Henry Maitland by Morley Roberts is published

Mary Collet (Clara's sister-in-law) died

Wilfred Collet (Clara's brother) made Governor of Honduras

Collet met Professor Mahalanobis


Walter wrote to Alfred. Address given was Collet's


Walter Gissing killed at Gommecourt - body never identified


Collet joined the Beveridge Reconstruction Committee

Labour Department of Board of Trade separated to become the Ministry of Labour. Collet was 'there when [Lloyd George] created it'


Women over 30 given the vote

On Council for Royal Statistical Society


By now living at 81 South Hill Park, Hampstead


Retired from Civil Service but continues on various Trade Boards


"Obituary -- Sir Charles Loch" by Clara Collet in Economic Review


Went to Ministry by hearse as no transport running due to General Strike in order to sit on Trade Board,


"Some Recollections of Charles Booth," published in Social Services Review

Wilfred Collet died


Worked for Hubert Llewellyn Smith collecting information and writing a chapter for his work New Survey of London Life and Labour Sometime in this period Collet moved to 61 Swains's Lane, Highgate with a view through Highgate cemetery gates of Karl Marx's grave


Compiled The History of the Collett Family with Henry Haines Collett

"The Present Position of Women in Industry" - read at the Adam Smith Club. Published in RSS Journal in 1945


"Obituary - Henry Higgs" published in Economic Journal


Had the early years of her diary typed and made additional comments


"Charles Booth, The Denison Club and H Llewellyn Smith" published in RSS Journal


"The Letters of John to Eliza" published

Died 3 August 1948. Body sent to London for medical research

Home Women's Work Karl Marx Charles Booth George Gissing Churchill Jack the Ripper Chronology

© 2017