National Women’s History Month focuses on celebrating women’s contributions to society. The many roles and responsibilities of a nanny, including their amazing multitasking skills are just some of the reasons why they should be celebrated. Famous nannies played prominent roles to the parents they worked for. So, for National Women’s History Month, we are remembering some of the most influential nannies throughout history.
Famous Nannies Throughout History
- Elizabeth Anne Everest (1832-1895) was Winston Churchill’s beloved nanny and an important figure in his early childhood. Churchill wrote in his autobiography My Early Life: “My nurse was my confidante. Mrs Everest it was who looked after me and tended all my wants. It was to her I poured out all my many troubles.”
- Alison Cunningham (1822-1913) known as “Cummy” was nanny to and played a large role in raising famous author Robert Louis Stevenson. He who wrote favorites such as Treasure Island and Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde.
- Marie Curie (1867-1934) was the first woman to win a Nobel Prize…twice. A Renowned Polish-French scientist of physics and chemistry, Curie coined the term ‘radioactivity’. Early in Madame Curie’s career she worked as a governess at age 17.
- St Josephine Bakhita (1869–1947) was a African American slave who worked as a nanny and later became a Roman Catholic Saint in 2000.
- Mary Hodgson (1876-1962) was the nanny who looked after the Llewelyn Davies boys. They are the five boys who inspired the characters of Peter Pan and the Lost Boys.
- Baroness Maria Augusta von Trapp (1905-1987) is the real life nanny who’s own story inspired the Broadway musical, and famous film, The Sound of Music.
- Marion Crawford CVO “Crawfie” (1909–1988) was the governess to Princess Margaret and Princess Elizabeth, who later became Queen Elizabeth II.
- Alexandra Shân “Tiggy” Legge-Bourke was born in 1965 and was the nanny to Prince William of Wales and brother Prince Harry. She was a strong support and influence in their lives after the death of their mother, Princess Diana.
- Liboria “Libo” Rodriguez was the real life nanny for famous director Alfonso Cuarón since 9 months old. She inspired the character of Cleo in Cuarón’s recent Oscar winning film “Roma”.
Throughout history, famous nannies have become influential contributors to our society and our children. Whether those children become a Queen or a famous director, a nanny is a significant presence in a child’s life. Nannies advocate education and good health and are valued leaders of at-home child care. Here’s a shout out to nannies everywhere, especially in San Diego County, you are appreciated!