|1810||Elizabeth Cleghorn Stevenson is born in Chelsea on September 29. Her parents are William Stevenson and his wife Elizabeth Stevenson (née) Holland.|
|1811||Elizabeth’s mother dies, and she is taken to live with her mother’s sister, Aunt Hannah Lumb in Knutsford, Cheshire.|
|1825-7||Attends school at ‘Avonbank’, Stratford-upon-Avon.|
|1828-9||Disappearance of her brother John at sea; Elizabeth goes to live with her sick father and her stepmother in Chelsea, London.|
|1829||Elizabeth’s father dies on March 22.|
|1832||Marries Rev. William Gaskell at St John’s Parish Church, Knutsford. The couple move to Manchester, where he is Assistant Minister at Cross Street Chapel. They begin married life living at 14 Dover Street in the Ardwick district.|
|1833||A daughter is stillborn.|
|1834||Birth of a daughter, Marianne.|
|1837||Poem, Sketches Among the Poor by Mr and Mrs Gaskell appears in Blackwood’s Magazine in January.|
|1837||Birth of a daughter, Margaret Emily (known as Meta).|
|c1838-41||Birth and death of a son.|
|1840||Elizabeth’s account of Clopton Hall published in William Howitt’s Visits to Remarkable Places. She sent him the description when she heard that he was planning a book on historic houses.|
|1842||Birth of a daughter, Florence Elizabeth. The Gaskells move to 121 Upper Rumford Street in Manchester.|
|1844||A son, William, is born on 23 October.|
|1845||Baby William dies of scarlet fever while the family holidays in Portmadoc, North Wales.|
|1845-48||Elizabeth collapses after the loss of her son. Searching desperately for something to distract her from her grief, William encourages her to write a novel – which became Mary Barton.|
|1846||Birth of a daughter, Julia Bradford.|
|1847||Libbie Marsh’s Three Eras published in Howitt’s Journal.|
|1848||Elizabeth’s first novel, Mary Barton, is published by Chapman & Hall. Christmas Storms and Sunshine appears in Howitt’s Journal.|
|1849||Meets Dickens and other literary figures on a visit to London.
Hand and Heart appears in the Sunday School Penny Magazine; The Last Generation in England appears in Sartain’s Union Magazine, USA.
|1850||The Gaskells move to their final family home in Manchester, 42 (now 84) Plymouth Grove. The Moorland Cottage is published.
Invited by Dickens to contribute to Household Words, in which appears Lizzie Leigh, The Well of Pen Morfa and The Heart of John Middleton. Elizabeth Gaskell meets Charlotte Brontë for the first time.
|1851||First episode of Cranford appears in Household Words. Mr Harrison’s Confessions is published in The Ladies’ Companion. Charlotte Brontë visits the Gaskells in Manchester.|
|1852||The Schah’s English Gardener and The Old Nurse’s Story appear in Household Words and Bessy’s Trouble at Home in the Sunday School Penny Magazine.|
|1853||Cranford and Ruth published.
Cumberland Sheep-Shearers, Traits and Stories of The Hugenots, Morton Hall, My French Master and The Squire’s Story, all appear in Household Words. Visits Charlotte Brontë at Haworth. Visits Madame Mohl in Paris.
|1854||The serialisation of North and South begins in Household Words, where Modern Greek Songs and Company Manners are also published. William Gaskell becomes Minister of Cross Street Chapel.|
|1855||North and South and Lizzie Leigh and Other Stories published. An Accursed Race and Half a Lifetime Ago appear in Household Words. Charlotte Brontë dies on 31 March. The Revd Patrick Brontë asks Elizabeth to write her biography.|
|1856||The Poor Clare appears in Household Words.|
|1857||The Life of Charlotte Brontë is published. It is quickly followed by a second and then third edition ‘revised and corrected.’|
|1858||My Lady Ludlow, Right at Last, and The Manchester Marriage appear in Household Words, and The Doom of The Griffiths in Harper’s Magazine.|
|1859||Round the Sofa and Other Tales published. Lois the Witch and The Crooked Branch appear in Dickens’ new magazine All The Year Round.|
|1860||Right at Last and Other Tales, published. Curious, if True, appears in the Cornhill Magazine.|
|1861||The Grey Woman appears in All The Year Round.|
|1862||Overstrains herself organising relief for Manchester’s destitute during the cotton famine.|
|1863||Sylvia’s Lovers published. A Dark Night’s Work, An Italian Institution, The Cage at Cranford and Crowley Castle, appear in All the Year Round, and Cousin Phillis in the Cornhill Magazine.|
|1864||French Life, published in Fraser’s Magazine.
Wives and Daughters begins serialisation in the Cornhill Magazine.
|1865||Cousin Phillis and Other Tales and The Grey Woman and Other Tales published.Elizabeth secretly buys a house, The Lawn, in Holybourne, Hampshire. While staying there, she dies suddenly on November 12. On November 16 she is taken north to Knutsford, Cheshire, and is laid to rest in the churchyard of Brook Street Unitarian Chapel, Knutsford.|
|1866||The unfinished Wives and Daughters is published posthumously with a note written by Frederick Greenwood, the editor of the Cornhill Magazine, in which he writes of how he thinks Mrs Gaskell had intended to end her novel. In the final paragraph of his note, he pays personal homage to Elizabeth Gaskell saying, ‘It is unnecessary to demonstrate to those who know what is and what is not true literature that Mrs Gaskell was gifted with some of the choicest faculties bestowed upon mankind; that these grew into greater strength and ripened into greater beauty in the decline of her days; and that she has gifted us with some, the truest, purest works of fiction in the language. And she was herself what her works show her to have been- a wise good woman.’|
|1884||Reverend William Gaskell dies on 11 June, aged 78. He is buried beside his wife at Brook Street Unitarian Chapel in Knutsford.|