Author of many children
's stories, most famously The Tale of Peter Rabbit
Born July 28, 1866 in London, and brought up largely by governesses, she had a deep love of nature and animals. She and her brother were never encouraged to be friends with other children, but the two of them raised many pets, on whom a lot of her characters were based.
Peter Rabbit started out as an illustrated letter to the sick child of one of her former governesses; it was years later that she thought of publishing it, and then several publishers rejected it before it finally came out in 1902. In 1903, she became engaged to one of her publishers, but he died before they could marry. Instead, she bought a rural house away from her parents, although they still expected her to come and take care of them much of the time.
In 1913, she finally married a local lawyer, though her parents didn't approve. For the latter part of her life she farmed, bred sheep, and worked for the National Trust, an organization "set up to protect and preserve land and buildings of great beauty or historical importance" (and eventually left them 4000 acres of land when she died in 1943).