Wolverhampton BTW

Frances Bowyer Vaux

Vaux, Frances Bowyer, later Miller, 1786—1854

by Benjamin Colbert

Frances Bowyer Vaux was the daughter of Jeremiah Vaux (1748-1829), Birmingham surgeon, and Susanna Vaux, née Bowyer. She was raised in the Society of Friends (Quakers) and moved in Society circles throughout her life.

Little is known of her working life besides the fact that she ran a school for boys in Birmingham. From 1815 to 1825, she also regularly published children’s fiction with the publisher Harvey and Darton, and continued to have dealings with them until at least 1835 (in that year, Darton paid her £12.12.0 for translating her first work, Henry: A Story [1815], into French).

In May 1816, she married William Miller (1788-1861), an Ipswich brewer and Friend, who became secretary to the Birmingham General Hospital, where Vaux’s brother Bowyer Vaux worked as a surgeon. The Millers parented three sons and three daughters, including William Allen Miller (1817-70; ODNB), Professor of Chemistry and King’s College, London, and Elizabeth Owen Miller (1823-40).

Frances Bowyer Miller died at Birmingham in 1854, aged 68.


Clerke, A. M., and Anita McConnell. 'Miller, William Allen (1817–1870), chemist'. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. 26 May 2005. Oxford University Press. Web. 26 Feb. 2018. https://doi.org/10.1093/ref:odnb/18746

Darton, Lawrence. The Dartons: An Annotated Check-List of Children’s Books Issued by Two Publishing Houses, 1787-1876. Ed. Assist. Brian Alderson. London: British Library, 2004. Print.

European Magazine 69 (May 1816): 465. Print.


Title Published
The Happy Travellers; or, a Trip to France 1817

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