Skip to main content

Black, Clementina (1854–1922)

Black, Clementina (1854–1922)

English trade unionist and writer. Born in Brighton, England, in 1854; died at her home in Brighton in 1922; daughter of David Black (a solicitor) and Maria (Patten) Black (a successful portrait painter); never married; no children.

Selected writings:

A Sussex Idyll (1877); (novel) An Agitator (1895); (novel) The Princess Desirée (1896); (novel) The Pursuit of Camilla (1899); Sweated Industry and the Minimum Wage (1907); (novel) Caroline (1908); Makers of Our Clothes: a Case for Trade Boards (1909); (novel) The Linleys of Bath (1911); Married Women's Work (1915).

Clementina Black was born in Brighton, England, in 1854. Her father David Black was Brighton's Town Clerk, but when Clementina was small he became seriously ill and lost the use of both his legs. In 1875, her mother Maria Black died from a rupture caused by lifting her invalid husband. After a number of years spent caring for her invalid father and seven younger brothers, Clementina Black arrived in London to teach and write. She was immediately concerned with the issues of work and wages for women and in 1886, befriended by Eleanor Marx , became secretary of the Women's Protective and Provident League. She also created a Consumers' League, supported the London Match Girls' Strike in 1888, and initiated the Equal Pay resolution at the Trade Union Congress that same year.

Resigning from the League, Black joined the new Women's Trade Union Association and took up the cause against sweatshop labor. In 1894, she became a founding member of the Women's Industrial Council of which she would later serve as president. She was also vice-president of the National Anti-Sweating League. Later in her career, Black became a member of the National Union of Women's Suffrage Society and editor of the Common Cause. In 1906, she initiated the suffrage petition. Though much of Black's writing was in support of labor rights, she also authored five novels.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Black, Clementina (1854–1922)." Women in World History: A Biographical Encyclopedia. . 15 Sep. 2019 <>.

"Black, Clementina (1854–1922)." Women in World History: A Biographical Encyclopedia. . (September 15, 2019).

"Black, Clementina (1854–1922)." Women in World History: A Biographical Encyclopedia. . Retrieved September 15, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.