(1880 - 1960)
"it has seemed worth while to try to influence girls and children for good, by amusing them and catching their interest"

Elsie Jeanette Dunkerly chose the name Oxenham  when her first book, Goblin Island,was published in 1907, following her father, also an author, who had used the pen-name “John Oxenham” for many years.  She lived her entire life with her sisters, involving herself with organisations aimed at helping girls achieve a certain self reliance, including the British Camp Fire Girls movement, the English Folk Dance Society and latterly the Girl Guides. Oxenham was strongly influenced by the moral and physical ethos espoused by these organisations and they play a large role in her many novels of school girls and their adventures.  She is perhaps best known for her Abbey Series, the first of which The Girls of the Hamlet Club,was published in 1914 and she went on to write a further 37 titles about the Abbey Girls.

Along with Elinor Brent-Dyer and Dorita Fairlie Bruce, she is one of the major figures among girls’ story writers of the first half of the twentieth century. She is still loved and collected by fans all over the world.

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A Divided Patrol