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Isabella Valancy Crawford was an Irish-born Canadian writer and poet. She was one of the first Canadians to make a living as a freelance writer." Crawford is increasingly being viewed as Canada’s first major poet." She is the author of "Malcolm's Katie," a poem that has achieved "a central place in the canon of nineteenth-century Canadian poetry." Life She was the last surviving daughter of Dr. Stephen Crawford. She was born in Dublin, Ireland on Christmas Day, 1850. The family emigrated to Canada when she was five years of age. Much of Isabella Crawford's early life is unknown; "so little remains of the usual sources of evidence. We have no interviews with the subject or with those who knew her; we have no letters, diaries, or journals.... Some of the most basic questions about her life are likely to remain unanswered." By her own account she was born in Dublin, Ireland, the sixth daughter of Dr. Stephen Dennis Crawford and Sydney Scott; but "No record has been found of that marriage or of the birthdates and birthplaces of at least six children, of whom Isabella wrote that she was the sixth." The family was in Canada by 1857; in that year, Dr. Crawford applied for a license to practice medicine in Paisley, Canada West. "In a few years, disease had taken nine of the twelve children, and a small medical practice had reduced the family to semi-poverty." Dr. Crawford served as Treasurer of Paisley Township, but "a scandal of a missing $500 in misappro..
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