Author Information At the Circulating Library
Author: Mrs. Alexander Fraser (1833–1908)
Alternate Name(s): Caroline Rosetta Small (maiden name)
Biography: Caroline Rosetta Fraser was born in 1829 in Madras, India, the daughter of Beaumont Dixie Small, a surgeon in the Bengal Medical Service, and Caroline Honora Pereira. Her father died in 1831 and a few years later her mother married Lieutenant-Colonel James Frushard, of the Bengal Infantry. According to an interview later in life, Fraser spend her childhood in England with two years in Paris. At the age of 17, Fraser married Capt. Alexander Fraser (1824-1898), of the Bengal (later Royal) Engineers. His career is notable for his direction of public works in India, especially railways and lighthouses, and his service in the British government in India. The couple had two sons, Alexander (born 1848) and Campbell (born 1850), both of whom served in the British military. By the 1860s, the pair separated: Caroline asked for a judicial separation in 1867 (which does not seem to have been granted) after moving back to England with her sons and widowed mother. Shortly afterwards, she began writing novels, presumably to support herself and her family, beginning with Not While She Lives (1870), a bigamy novel whose male protagonist is a novelist. She followed this novel with over twenty others all published under the name Mrs. Alexander Fraser. Meantime, her husband retired as a general in 1886 and returned to England where he set up house with Charlotte Monica Smith, a woman forty years his junior. Alexander Fraser and Smith had two sons, and the birth of the first prompted another attempt at a judicial separation by Caroline in 1885 (which, again, does not seem to have been granted). Alexander Fraser died in 1898, still estranged from his legal wife. Caroline Fraser stopped writing in the mid-1890s with the end of the three-volume novel. She died in 1908 at her home in Sussex.
References: Black; British Census; Clan Fraser Society of Canada (http://www.clanfraser.ca/admiral_fraser.htm); Trewman's Exeter Flying Post (20 May 1847)