Frances Hodgson Burnett (1849-1924) was born and grew up in Manchester, but after her father's death she emigrated with her mother to Knoxville, Tennessee, in 1865. Five years later her mother died and – like many other women of her time – she began writing short stories for popular magazines to support her family. Her first novel, That Lass o' Lowrie's (1877), brought her instant fame on both sides of the Atlantic.
She married in 1873, and in 1886 her popular children's serial Little Lord Fauntleroy was published to instant success. Mrs. Burnett wrote many other novels, for both children and adults, as well as plays and short stories, but she is best remembered for the classic children's novels The Secret Garden (1911) and A Little Princess (1905).
She became an American citizen in 1905, though she travelled frequently to Europe. She died at her home on Long Island a few weeks before her seventy-fifth birthday.