Scope and Content note
This collection is comprised of a number of handwritten manuscript works by Mary Shakleton Leadbeater. These include poems, dialogues, and Bible stories. Most of the manuscripts are sewn or folded together in some way, and most are fair copies with very few corrections.
Mary Shackleton Leadbeater (1758-1826) was born in 1758, the daughter of Richard and Elizabeth (Carleton) Shackleton in Ballitore, Ireland. In 1784, Leadbeater travelled with her father to London. She married William Leadbeater in 1791. The couple had two daughters; Sarah, born 1792, and Deborah, born 1795. Leadbeater and her family lived at Ballitore, Ireland, and in 1798 narrowly escaped when their town was attacked during an uprising. Leadbeater was a friend of Edmund Burke, who had studied with her grandfather. Leadbeater died on June 27th, 1826 at Ballitore, Ireland after an illness with "dropsy," or edema, at the age of 67.
Leadbeater was well educated, and was known as a poet and author. Her works include Extracts and Original Anecdotes for the Improvement of Youth (1794, publish anonymously), Poems (1808), Cottage Dialogues among the Irish Peasantry (1811; part II in 1813), The Landlord's Friend (1813), Tales for Cottagers (1814, written with Elizabeth Shakleton), Cottage Biography, being a Collection of Lives of the Irish Peasantry (1822), Memoirs and Letters of Richard and Elizabeth Shackleton … compiled by their Daughter (1822), Biographical Notices of Members of the Society of Friends who were resident in Ireland (1823), The Pedlars, a Tale (1824), and The Leadbeater Papers: Annals of Ballitore (1862, postumptuously).