RATTRAY, Lizzie Frost
Feminist and social worker.
A new biography of Rattray, Lizzie Frost appears in the Dictionary of New Zealand Biography on this site.
Lizzie Frost Rattray was born at Dunedin in 1854, daughter of Archdeacon John Fenton and Mary, née Lister. After an education in England and France she married in 1879 William Rattray, an Auckland businessman who had been a member of the Provincial Council from 1861 to 1865. Lizzie Rattray took up work for a number of welfare organisations, including the Young Women's Institute, the Girls' Friendly Society, and the St. John's Ambulance. Her feminist views led her into the campaign for the women's suffrage and she became a committee member of the Women's Franchise League. She was also one of the earliest women journalists in the country, acting as co-editor of the New Zealand Graphic from 1892 and as New Zealand correspondent for The Gentlewoman for many years. She died at Auckland on 12 August 1931. In the course of a busy life Lizzie Rattray fought hard for the equality of the sexes and it would appear that her intelligence and ability, displayed in writing and administrative work alike, pleaded her cause even more eloquently than her words.
by Patricia Ann Grimshaw, M.A., Auckland.
- The Dominion, 13 Aug 1931 (Obit).