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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

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Lady Jane Franklin

In their own words

Lady Jane Franklin
Audio: 2 minutes

Mr Price told me that it was the general talk of the female prisoners in the town or factory that Miss Hayter had arrived here to introduce the Milbank penitentiary system; separate cells, cutting off the hair, and that they had determined to tear her to pieces. He advised me and her not to go to the factory alone or unguarded – he could not answer what the women might do. I laughed at this, and said I had no intention at all to be torn to pieces, but did not believe we were in any danger.

Excited chiefly by the suspicion I entertained that this was not so much the report of the women as of some enemies to our interference in the factory, with the view of frightening us from continued intermeddling, I determined to go in order to shew [sic] that I considered such reports absurd, and was by no means to be deterred by them from persevering.

As we approached the Factory, Mr. and Mrs. Hutchinson (the superintendent and matron) in their gig were driving away from it towards town in order to visit Mrs Sprent who is Mrs Hutchinson’s sister.

On seeing us they turned about and alighted at the door of the Factory to receive us, nor could anything I said induce them to leave me there. I mentioned the report I had heard, and that it was it which brought me there today. Mr. Hutchinson seemed concerned and took some pains to justify the women of the factory from any such intention, he said except in occasional moments of excitement they were always very quiet.

Acknowledgements

Franklin, Jane (1841), Diary of Jane Franklin 4 September 1841, Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge, England 

Attribution

Voiced by Karen Vickery

Related people

Jane Franklin

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The National Portrait Gallery building front entrance
The National Portrait Gallery building front entrance
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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders past and present. We respectfully advise that this site includes works by, images of, names of, voices of and references to deceased people.

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