Woman of the Century/Augusta Cooper Bristol
BRISTOL. Mrs. Augusta Cooper, poet and lecturer, born in Croydon, N. H., 17th April, 1835. AUGUSTA COOPER BRISTOL. Her maiden name was Cooper, and she was the youngest of a family of ten children. She was a precocious child, and her poetical taste showed itself in her early infancy. Her first verses were written at the age of eight, and she had poems published when only fifteen. She was forward in mathematics and showed in her early life an aptitude for logical and philosophical reasoning. The greater part of her education was acquired in a public school, but she was also a student in Canaan Union Academy and Kimball Union Academy. She began teaching at fifteen and was thus employed summer and winter for seven years. At twenty-two years of age she was married to G. H. Kimball, from whom she was divorced live years later. In 1866 she was married to Louis Bristol, a lawyer of New Haven, Conn., and they removed to southern Illinois. In 1869 she published a volume of poems, and in that year she gave her first public lecture, which circumstance seems to have changed the course of her intellectual career. In 1872 she moved to Vineland, N. J., her present residence, from which date she has been called more before the public as a platform speaker. For four years she was president of the Ladies' Social Science Class in Vineland, N. J., giving lessons from Spencer and Carey every month. In the winter of 18S0 she gave a course of lectures before the New York Positivist Society on "The Involution of Character," followed by another course under the auspices of the Woman's Social Science Club of that city. In the following June she was sent by friends in New York to study the equitable association of labor and capital at the Familistere, in Guise, in France, founded by M. Godin. She was also commissioned to represent the New York Positivist Society in an international convention of liberal thinkers in Brussels in September. Remaining in the Familistere for three months and giving a lecture on the "Scientific Basis of Morality before the Brussels convention, she returned home and published the " Rules ana Statutes' of the association in Guise. In 1881 she was chosen State lecturer of the Patrons of Husbandry in New Jersey, and in the autumn of the following year was employed on a national lecture bureau of that order. Since her husband's death, which occurred in December, 1882, Mrs. Bristol has appeared but seldom on the public platform. She is occupied with the care of an estate and in directing the educational interests of her youngest daughter. Some of her philosophic and scientific lectures have been translated and published in foreign countries.