100 years before Rosa Parks there was Frances Ellen Watkins Harper (1825-1911). She was an author, poet and abolitionist. Born free in Baltimore, she had a prolific career, publishing her first book of poetry at age 20 and her first novel (Iola Leroy) at age 67. In 1850, she became the first woman to teach sewing at the Union Seminary. In 1851, she helped blacks along the Underground Railroad en route to Canada, running from the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850.