Chautauqua Speakers Bureau presents Lynne Swanson as Isabella Bird Bishop

In 1872, a stout, high-minded English spinster boarded a steamship in London to sail around the world. Isabella Bird had been advised by her doctors to seek new places to breathe ocean air in hopes of curing her “chronic spinal complaint.” Only after months at sea did these hopes begin to be realized. While in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, enduring terrible hardships, Isabella began to feel revitalized and to enjoy herself. She was having an adventure! After exploring the Sandwich Islands in her new riding pants and free of pain, Isabella trekked off to another adventure, Estes Park, Colorado and the Rocky Mountains. Isabella Bird attracted adventures. She recorded her lively experiences in letters to her stay-at-home sister, Henrietta. When Isabella returned to Britain, the two sisters compiled these letters in a widely read book, A Lady’s Life in the Rocky Mountains. She later became popular as a lecturer in a Victorian society eager to hear of foreign lands and exotic exploits.

For over 17 years, Lynne Swanson has portrayed Willa Cather and a number of other women who contributed to the literary and cultural development of the American frontier. She toured with the Wyoming Chautauqua, and the Heartland Chautauqua in Missouri and Illinois. Swanson graduated from Washington State University and attended library school at the University of Washington. She is employed with information services at Laramie County Library in Cheyenne and is the organist at St. Mark’s Church. For more information please call Melisaa Reed of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution at 303-506-6385 or email at

15 May 2009 (All day)
Belongs to: events.