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Catharine Beecher

BEECHER, Catharine Esther, American educator, 1800-1878. Harriet Beecher Stowe (the writer) was her younger sister. Catharine opened a school in Hartford (Ct), The Weston Female Institute, which she directed from 1832-7 when it closed due to her ill health. In 1841 she wrote a treatise on domestic economy. Catharine worked with the Ladies Society towards training in higher education for women and in 1852 she founded the American Women’s Education Association. Her main interest became domestic science, and in this she worked with her sister Harriet to publish a book in 1869, ‘The American Woman’s Home; or the Principles of Domestic Science’. She also introduced hygiene, physical education, and activities like callisthenics into curricula at girls’ schools. Callisthenics needs no equipment and teaches graceful movement. In 1869 Catharine designed an integrated kitchen-cabinet unit with a sink/draining board, worktops and cupboards.

Domestic Science

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Beecher Kitchen Design

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