Why do we remember Grace Darling?
Last week we recapped the story of Grace Darling's rescue and wrote a newspaper article about it. Lots of newspapers reported the rescue at the time and this is how Grace became so famous.
Victorians did not have cameras or video to interview Grace, but this did not stop them. She had many artists go to paint her portrait and hundreds of people went on boat trips to the lighthouse just to see her, they even asked for locks of her hair! The queen sent her congratulations and £50. The question is why?
Ask your child if they can think of reasons why Grace became famous e.g. she was brave, she risked her life to help people, she was an ordinary person, she was a girl.
Unfortunately Grace didn’t enjoy the attention and fame as she was very humble and wanted a simple, quiet life. Her life changed and she couldn’t go anywhere without being approached by fans. Without cameras, many people were desperate to know what Grace looked like. She found that writing thank-you letters and sitting for portraits left her little time to get on with her life.
Four years after the famous rescue, in 1842, Grace became ill with tuberculosis. On 20 October that year, Grace died at the age of 26. Hundreds of people, rich and poor, crowded the Northumberland village of Bamburgh to say goodbye.
Grace’s fame continued long after she was dead and many people made things to celebrate her story. Look at the images of Grace memorabilia in the topic pack on pg21. There is even a Grace Darling Museum, follow the link below for a virtual tour!
Your child is going to make their own object or piece of memorabilia as a celebration of Grace’s story. Some possible items could be a chocolate box lid, a portrait or postcard, a medal or a model lighthouse.