Elizabeth Robins Chronology

Chronology of Elizabeth Robins

Chronology and Bibliography of Elizabeth Robins:

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Life and Major Works

Prepared by Joanne E. Gates
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1862, August 6. Born, Louisville, Kentucky. First child of the second marriage of Charles E. Robins and his first cousin, Hannah M. (Crow) Robins. The family moved to Staten Island shortly after the Civil War.

1872. Begins attendance at Putnam Female Seminary, living with her grandmother at her home, the Stone Academy, in Zanesville, Ohio.

1880, summer: travels with father to visit mining camps near Summit, Colorado; fall and winter: in the company of her father visits theater in New York and Washington.

1881-2. Relocates to Staten Island and New York City, staying with family friends while she looks for stage work. Accepts position with James O'Neill's touring company.

1883-5. Actress for Boston Museum Theatre.

1885, January 12. Marries fellow actor George Richmond Parks in private ceremony in Salem, Massachusetts. When her manager finds out about their marriage, Robins's contract is not renewed.

1885, October. Death of ER's grandmother, Jane Hussey Robins, in Zanesville, Ohio.

1885, December. Triumphal appearance of ER in the Zanesville Opera House, playing Mercedes in James O'Neill's Count of Monte Cristo. She hears later that night of her father's journey to deliver her mother to a mental asylum.

1886, fall. Resigns from O'Neill's Monte Cristo tour when her sister, Una (Eunice) dies in Florida.

1887, May 31. George Parks drowns himself in the Charles River, Boston. His body is discovered two weeks later.

1887-8. On tour across America with the Edwin Booth and Lawrence Barrett company.

1888. Released from her acting contract in San Francisco, returns to the East Coast by way of Central America. Travels with Sarah Bull to London and Norway. With encouragement from actor-manager Herbert Beerbohm Tree, decides to stay in London.

1890. First Publication: "Across America with 'Junius Brutus Booth'," published in the July issue of The Universal Review Vol. VII, No. 27 (July 1890), 375-392.

1890. Visits Passion Play in Oberammergau, secures part in The Sixth Commandment, arranges for her brother Vernon to study medicine in London.

1891, January. Plays Mrs. Linde in matinée production of A Doll's House. Meets Henry James.

1891, April. Ibsen's Hedda Gabler co-produced with fellow American actress, Marion Lea, Robins playing Hedda.

1892, fall. Begins first full-length fiction, The Coming Woman," unfinished.

1893. Alan's Wife (with Florence Bell). London: Heinemann. Robins plays the title role in the Independent Theatre's production. Several editions exist online.

1893, April. Charles E. Robins dies. ER organizes the Ibsen Repertory Series, for which she plays the parts of Hedda Gabler, Hilda Wangel, Rebecca West, Agnes Brand.

1894, January. Anonymous publication of first short story, "A Lucky Sixpence," New Review, 10, no. 56 (January, 1894), 105-126.

1894, June. Anonymous publication of short story, "Dedicated to John Huntley," New Review, 10, no. 61 (June, 1894), 746-758.

1894. George Mandeville's Husband. London: Heinemann. Published under the pseudonym C. E. Raimond. Hathi Trust makes this title available, George Mandeville's Husband.

1895. The New Moon. London: Heinemann. New York: D. Appleton and Company. Published under the pseudonym C. E. Raimond. Hathi Trust makes this title available, The New Moon.

1895 August. Chapman's Magazine publishes the C. E. Raimond story, "Confessions of a Cruel Mistress." (volume 1, No. 4, 361-79)

1895. September. Short story " Miss de Maupassant" appears in The New Review (Vol. 13, No. 76), 233-247

1896. Below the Salt and Other Stories. London: Heinemann. Printed in the U.S. as "The Fatal Gift of Beauty" and Other Stories. Chicago: H. S. Stone and Co. Both editions published under the pseudonym C. E. Raimond. Hathi Trust makes available a public domain text of this work, Fatal Gift of Beauty and Other Stories

1897. The New Century Theatre formed in London.

1898, March. Performs Hedda Gabler in New York. Travels on to Jacksonville, Illinois, to visit Hannah Robins in Oak Lawn asylum. Her brother Vernon later credits ER for convincing their uncle that Hannah should be released.

1898, May. C. E. Raimond short story, La Bellerieuse, published in Pall Mall Magazine.

1898, November. The Open Question: A Tale of Two Temperaments. London: Heinemann. First edition published under the pseudonym, C. E. Raimond. Her identity is disclosed in the press shortly afterwards. Leipzig, 1899; New York, Harper and Brothers, 1899. Project Gutenberg's edition: 1899.

1899. 4 February. The Times Saturday supplement, Literature publishes ER essay that is part of their regular column by authors, Among My Books.Robins describes her recollections of The British Merlin. Except for letters and interviews, this is the first work published with her own name attached, the disclosure of her C. E. Raimond pseudonym disclosed in December 1898. 

1899. Visits Italian Alps. Writes The Mills of the Gods , Benvenuto Cellini.

1899. June. Publishes A Modern Woman Born 1689, in The Anglo-Saxon Review. Review essay of the letters of Lady Mary Wortley Montagu.

1900, March. Leaves London for New York, Boston, Seattle, and trip to Alaska.

1900, April 5. Begins making diary entries in large journal volume.

1900, June 14. Arrives in Nome.

1900, July 26. Departs Nome for trip up the Yukon River.

1900, August 5. Saxton Robins joins ER on her steamer, traveling a part of a day from Anvik to Greyling.

1900, August 19. "Elizabeth Robins at Cape Nome," Seattle Post Intelligencer [publication of her Alaska letters subtitled "Living Under Martial Law" and "The Court Arrives"].

1900. September 1. ER is admitted to the Seattle General Hospital, suffering from typhoid.

1900, October 17. Raymond returns to Seattle; they travel together to Louisville.

1900, October. "The Very Latest Gold Field in the Arctic Circle," Review of Reviews, London edition, XXII: 343-345 (letter from Grantley Harbor, Alaska).

1900, November 18. Elizabeth Robins's last diary entry, mid- Atlantic ocean, en route to London.

1900, December. "On Seeing Madame Bernhardt's Hamlet," North American Review, 171 (December, 1900), 908-919.

1901, January. "The Gold Miners of the Frozen North: A Visit to Cape Nome," Pall Mall Magazine, Vol. 23; 55-65, with photographs.

1901, February. Raymond Robins visits ER in England.

1901. While traveling in Italy, midsummer, ER learns of the deaths of Saxton and Hannah Robins. Begins "Yukon Sketches," which develops into The Magnetic North.

1901. September. "Embryo Americans," Harper's Magazine, 593- 502. See listing in Shorter Works, Later Non Fiction

1902. "Pleasure Mining," Fortnightly Review, 77: 474-486.

1902, fall. Last professional stage appearance, in Mrs. Humphrey Ward's Eleanor.

1903. November. "The Alaska Boundary," Fortnightly Review, 80: 792-799.

1904. The Magnetic North. London: Heinemann; New York: Frederick A. Stokes Company; Leipzig: B. Tauchnitz; Toronto: McLeod and Allen. Reprint, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Gregg Press, 1969. Text on line at Project Gutenberg: The Magnetic North html.

1904, September. ER short story, Lady Quassia, published in The Century Illustrated Monthly Magazine.

1904. ER undergoes rest cure.

1905. Raymond purchases "Chinsegut" in Hernando County, Florida.

1905, May. " Monica's Village." Century Magazine, 19-30; reprinted in The Mills of the Gods and Other Stories (1920).

1905, June. ER travels to New York for Raymond's marriage to Margaret Dreier.

1905. Publication in The Pall Mall Magazine of "The Caribou Stand" Vol. 35. Like "Monica's Village," this story was conceived as a chapter of The Magnetic North. Presumably it was deleted from the published book for length considerations.

1905. A Dark Lantern. London: Heinemann; Leipzig: B. Tauchnitz; New York: The Macmillan Company. Available at Open Library.

1906. Begins Come and Find Me, based on her trip to Nome and the legend of the swindling of the initial discoveries in the area. Working titles, "The Mother Lode," "The Great Legacy." Revisits Chinsegut.

1907, April. Votes for Women, the only play by ER to be produced and published, is staged under the direction of Harley Granville Barker at the Court Theatre, London. Text at Victorian Women Writers Project: Votes for Women at Indiana. Page images edition is available at Open Library. See in the Plays section links to performances of Votes for Women.

1907, October. Robins had printed as a pamphlet "Woman's Secret," intended as a preface to The Convert. When she discovered that the printing was too far along to include it with the novel's publication, she had it printed separately. Although this title is the opening essay in the collection Way Stations, originally prepared in hypertext for the Robins Web in 1999, the separate pamphlet can now be consulted as an imaged document (Radcliffe College, Harvard University) at HathiTrust.

It is interesting for its two last pages of type. One lists all available Robins novels in print, headlined with The Convert, "Ready Oct. 17." A second page details: "How Women can help the Woman's Movement." Also significant is that the last page of the essay proper advertises the new paper "published monthly," Votes for Women. Of course, this publication would continue on with more frequent publication, and Robins would often contribute.

I use evidence in letters and diary to point out that she meant the essay to be a preface for The Convert, but that the printer was too eager to get the manuscript of the novel out of her hands. She was determined to have the essay printed as the pamphlet. I detail this and the import of the pamphlet in my dissertation, "Sometimes Suppressed" (330 ff.).  

In the Sue Thomas bibliography, the pamphlet version of "Woman's Secret" is item 217.  Thomas does not cross reference its republication as part of Way Stations. Its prominence as Chapter One, even though it interrupts her otherwise careful chronology for Way Stations, should be noted.

Near simultaneous to this pamphlet is published The Convert, her novel based on her suffrage play. London: Methuen; New York: Gross and Dunlap, Macmillan's Standard Library. Reprint, London: The Woman's Press, 1980 (in U.S., Feminist Press), with introduction by Jane Marcus. Plain text in chapters housed at A Celebration of Women Writers: The Convert. Project Gutenberg provides in multiple formats, including page images: The Convert at Gutenberg. Other editions at HathiTrust.

1907. Under the Southern Cross [working title: "The Peruvian"]. New York: Frederick A. Stokes. [Begun 1888, completed 1899.] E-book in multiple formats from Project Gutenberg: Under the Southern Cross.

1908. Come and Find Me. New York: The Century Company; London: William Heinemann. Serialized in Century Magazine, April 1907-March 1908. Also Nelson's Library edition, 1915.

1908. Purchases Backsettown, a centuries-old farmhouse, in Henfield, Sussex.

1908, June and July. The Mills of the Gods. Fortnightly Review; New York: Moffat, Yard and Company, 1908; reprinted in "The Mills of the Gods" and Other Stories (1920).

1909. The Florentine Frame. London: John Murray, 1909; New York: Moffat, Yard and Company; Leipzig: B. Tauchnitz. Reissued, London: E. Nasy & Grayson, 1929. Hathi Trust makes available a copy of this novel, Florentine Frame.

1909. Begins "Bowarra," a children's play based on Eskimo animal legends and materials from The Magnetic North. Harley Granville Barker provided suggestions for revision and staging possibilities, later including marketing it to cinema firms in America after World War I. Unproduced and unpublished.

1910. December. " Miss Cal," English Review (December 1910); McClures, 36: 218-228. Reprinted in The Mills of the Gods and Other Stories (1920).

1913. My Little Sister. (American title of Where Are You Going To? London: William Heinemann.) Serialized in McClures, 40 (December 1912), 121-145 and January 1913, 253-260; New York: Dodd, Mead. Project Gutenberg supplies this in its multiple formats: My Little Sister at Gutenberg.

1913. Way Stations. New York: Dodd, Mead; London, New York, Toronto: Hodder and Stoughton; Leipzig: B. Tauchnitz. A collection of suffrage essays, speeches, published letters, with "Time Table" commentaries on the events of the Votes for Women campaign in Great Britain.

1913, May. Good Housekeeping publishes ER short story, "Under His Roof."

1913, September. Hearst's Magazine published a chapter of Way Stations as their featured Book of the Month. Chapter 7 of Way Stations, originally entitled Signs of the Times, is retitled "Why Suffragettes Go to Jail."

1914, April. ER authors a review of Constance Lytton's Prisons and Prisoners for Votes for Women.

1915-17. An edition of Rebel Women by Evelyn Sharp, originally 1910, is published with a two-page Introduction by Elizabeth Robins. ER volunteers for war relief work in England. Assists with the library at the Endell Street Hospital; visits schools to lecture on behalf of the Ministry of Food.

1917. March issue of The Nineteenth Century. Publication of the Essay "Women at Home and Beyond the Seas: An Anomaly." Vol 81. No 471 pages 640-650. Available on line by searching Google Books. Local dowload of the selected pages: Women at Home 

1918. Camilla. New York: Dodd, Mead; London: Hodder and Stoughton. This is available at Google Books.

1919. The Messenger. New York: Century; London: Hodder and Stoughton. (Serialized in Century Magazine, November 1918-July 1919.) Book edition at Project Gutenberg: The Messenger.

1919. "A New View of Country Life." Published in March 1919. A Profile of the Women's Institutes.

1920. The Mills of the Gods and Other Stories. London: Thornton Butterworth. See individual titles within the grouping Shorter works. "Bolt Seventeen," Fortnightly Vol. CVII, Jan-June 1920, pages 71-76.

1920. Prudence and Peter (with Octavia Wilberforce). Serialized in Time and Tide, May 21, 1920, for ten weekly installments. Book edition, London: Ernest Benn, 1928; New York: W. Morrow, 1928 (with drawings by Lois Lenski). (In the previous week's issue, or Volume 1, Issue 1, May 14, 1920, the launch of Time and Tide included Lady Florence Bell's tribute to Robins, printed with a sketch of her by J. W. Ginsbury. Online version available from the exhibit of Women's Print Media in Interwar Britain, https://interwarfeminism.omeka.net/items/show/7). The attribution to Gertrude Bell is incorrect. Lady Bell's memory of the first story appearing in Fortnightly Review was corrected in a subsequent issue, and Sue Thomas clarifies this in her essay "Elizabeth Robins and the New Review."

1922-23 ER published a series of articles for the British edition of Good Housekeeping. Collected together in this one document under the title Opressed By Sewing. Five Good Housekeeping Articles.

1923. Robins authors "The Six Points and Their Common Centre" for Time and Tide. From the reprinted article edited by Dale Spender in Time and Tide Wait for No Man.

1923. Time is Whispering. New York and London: Harper and Brothers; London: Hutchinson. Public domain electronic text is available at Hathi Trust:  Time is Whispering at Hathi Trust

1924. Ancilla's Share: An Indictment of Sex Antagonism. London: Hutchinson. First edition published anonymously. Reprint, Westport, Connecticut: Hyperion Press, 1976. Public domain electronic text is available at Hathi Trust: Ancilla's Share: An Indictment of Sex Antagonism at Hathi Trust.

1926. The Secret That Was Kept. New York and London: Harper; London: Hutchinson.Public domain electronic text is available at Hathi Trust: The Secret that was Kept at Hathi Trust.

1927-30. Works on "Rocky Mountain Journal," autobiographical novel based on her visit to Colorado mining camps in 1880. Not published.

1928. Prudence & Peter And Their Adventures With Pots & Pans. Co-authored with Octavia Wilberforce, Originally appearing in Time and Tide in 1920. See above. The illustrations for this 1928 American edition are by Lois Lenski.

1928. Delivers talk on Ibsen for the BBC, and "Ibsen and the Actress" for Ibsen Centennial. Ibsen and the Actress published as a pamphlet by Hogarth Press. This essay was reprinted by Haskell House in the early 1970s. It is heavily quoted in Farfan's article, and substantial extracts appear in The Routledge Anthology of Women's Theatre Theory and Dramatic Criticism, 2023. It is now in the public domain and can be read online at HathiTrust.  See also the local Robins Web section on Ibsen and the ActressAlso in March of 1928, both The Times and Time and Tide publish her articles on Ibsen.

1932. Theatre and Friendship: Some Henry James Letters with a Commentary by Elizabeth Robins. London: Jonathan Cape; New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons.

1932, fall. ER departs for America after learning that Raymond has disappeared. She rereads her 1900 diary and proposes a memoir of Raymond based on her record of their weeks in Nome. Raymond is discovered, recovering from amnesia, in North Carolina, and ER visits him briefly.

1933-4. ER works on "Raymond and I and Our Magnetic North," which Raymond forbids her to publish while he is alive. 

1940. Both Sides of the Curtain. London: Heinemann.

1948. Memoir of W. T. Stead. Unpublished.

1952, May 8. ER. dies in Brighton, England.

1956. Raymond and I. London: Hogarth Press; New York: Macmillan. Ramond and I at Hathi Trust