Papers of Mary Alexandra Jackson

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

The archive consists of a typescript biography and curriculum vitae (1997); correspondence (1956-1987).

Administrative / Biographical History

Mary Alexander Jackson (1905-1977) was born Mary Telford in Abergavenny in 1905. She studied French and History at Aberystwyth University, later going on to become a member of the British Federation of University Women and becoming involved in the movement to establish playgrounds for children in urban areas. In the 1920s she met John Jackson who, in 1928, went to Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) to become a surveyor. She followed in 1929 in order to marry him. They had three children who moved around the island with them continually in the course of John Jackson's work. They remained there until the outbreak of the Second World War, then Mary Jackson and her children were evacuated to Natal in South Africa. The whole family returned to Cambridge in 1948. Mary Jackson became employed teaching French nearby in Cottenham Village School and took part in a large number of voluntary organisations such as the Children's Playground Association which she founded in 1949. She became particularly involved in the National Council of Women at both a local and a national level. She was the local chair for three years, and during the 1950s was one of the twelve representatives of the NCW on the government commission sent to West Germany to study women's voluntary work there. She also retained an interest in the welfare of African women in the United Kingdom and was active in trying to organise centres for their use. She died in 1997.

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is available for research. Readers are advised to contact The Women's Library in advance of their first visit.

Acquisition Information

These papers were given to the Fawcett Library in 1997 by Mrs Jackson's daughters, Dilys and Dinah.

Other Finding Aids

Fawcett Library Catalogue

Related Material

The Women's Library holds the records of the International Council of Women (5ICW). London Metropolitan Archives holds the records of the National Council of Women.