Susannah Brody, Storyteller

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Living History Portrayals

Living history offers the opportunity to experience history through the eyes of real people who lived in earlier times. Using costumes and nineteenth century language, Susannah shares with the audience the characters of these courageous women. Each program lasts 30 minutes, not including biographical notes and time for a follow-up discussion.


Rebecca Pennock Lukens
1794 - 1854

Ann Preston, M.D.
1813 - 1872

Rebecca Lukens Ann Preston
Nineteenth Century Ironmaster
Pioneer in Medical Education and Woman's Rights

Born in 1794 into a prominent Quaker family, Rebecca Pennock married Dr. Charles Lukens. When her husband died in 1825, Rebecca assumed management of the Brandywine Ironworks in Coatesville, PA (later called Lukens Steel). During her 25-year leadership she brought a small water-powered ironworks to the forefront of the emerging steel industry. Using words taken directly from personal diaries and letters, Susannah portrays Rebecca Pennock Lukens as she reminisces about her often difficult life. Ann Preston participated in the early reform movements, including abolition, temperance and woman's rights. In 1850, at the age of thirty-six she enrolled in the Female Medical College of Pennsylvania, graduating as one of America's first woman doctors. She became a professor of physiology and dean of the medical college. Through Ann's letters, speeches and poetry, Susannah captures the complex “Victorian” language as she offers a glimpse of Dr. Preston's struggles to improve medical opportunities for women.

What others have to say

“Your performance was superb!”

Mary Sullivan, Graystone Society, Coatesville, PA

“... a wonderful glimpse into the life of an activist and visionary of another time.”

Poet and storyteller Tina Devine


Home Living History Tall Tales Folktales Chester County Stories Original Stories Workshops Books

Printable Brochures: Storytelling Brochure and Living History Brochure

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