Armstrong Browning Library’s Benefactors Day Celebration Highlights Victorian-era Writer, Intellectual Harriet Martineau

November 14, 2022

Libraries and ITS Contact: Carl Flynn, Baylor Libraries and ITS
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WACO, Texas (Nov. 14, 2022) – Deborah Logan, Ph.D., professor emerita of English at Western Kentucky University, will present “Harriet Martineau: Spirit of the Victorian Age” at Baylor University’s Armstrong Browning Library and Museum and online via Zoom at 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 17, as part of ABL’s annual Benefactors Day celebration.

Logan is the world’s leading expert on Harriet Martineau (June 12, 1802 - June 27, 1876), a highly influential intellectual, writer and journalist, known for her writings on political economy, sociology and feminism throughout the Victorian era. She rose to fame in 1832 after writing the popular book, Illustrations of Political Economy, which features 25 short stories that highlight the lives of ordinary people in different social environments. While her books outsold other popular authors of the period, her writings fell into obscurity and the works of other writers such as Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Charlotte Bronte and George Eliot overshadowed her legacy.

“Harriet Martineau was a primary representation of the spirit of the age,” Logan said. “Her commentary was always thoroughly grounded in historical precedent and demonstrated her insightful vision for the future.”

Logan’s publications include several anthologies of Martineau’s works as well as books and articles that explore Martineau in her context. Logan recently donated her personal Martineau collection to the Armstrong Browning Library and Museum, which features original manuscripts, modern editions of Martineau’s works and additional academic volumes. The Martineau Collection will be formally opened as part of this year’s Benefactors Day celebration.

This event is free and open to the public. For more information about the in-person event or to request Zoom credentials, visit To browse the contents of the Martineau collection, search Baylor’s online catalog.


The Armstrong Browning Library and Museum is dedicated to the study of the lives and works of Victorian poets Robert and Elizabeth Barrett Browning and houses the world’s largest collection of Browning material and other fine collections of rare 19th-century books, manuscripts and works of art. In recent years, Armstrong Browning Library has become known as a 19th-century research center after adding substantial book and manuscript collections on Matthew Arnold, John Ruskin, Joseph Milsand, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Charles Dickens, as well as on many other 19th-century writers and on most areas of 19th-century culture. Growing collections of 19th-century women poets and 19th-century theological pamphlets are among its newest avenues of expansion.


Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked Research 1 institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 20,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 90 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.