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Charlotte White (b. July 13, 1782, d. ?) was the first unmarried American woman missionary sent to a foreign country. She was sponsored by the Baptist Board of Foreign Missions and arrived in British India in 1816.

Early life[edit]

Charlotte "Susanna" Hazen Atlee was born in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, the daughter of Judge William Augustus Atlee and Esther Bowes Sayre. She married Nathaniel Hazen White in 1803. He died in 1804 and the couple's one child died in 1805. Charlotte White joined the First Baptist Church in Haverhill, Massachusetts in 1807.[1]

Missionary to India[edit]

Charlotte White's application to become a missionary with the newly founded Baptist Board of Foreign Missions was controversial as many members of the Board believed that only ordained males should be appointed missionaries. Charlotte was accepted as a missionary in a restricted appointment as a helper and companion for the wife of George Henry Hough, a missionary printer being sent to India, and with her assurance that she would be sustained by her own resources.[2]

Charlotte remained only briefly with the Houghs on arrival in Calcutta, India, marrying a widower with three sons, Joshua Rowe, a missionary with the English Baptist Missionary Society,(BMS) shortly after her arrival in 1816. She transferred to the BMS and the couple managed missionary schools in Digah, near Patna, India and Charlotte wrote a Hindustani language spelling book for children. In 1823, a letter from Charlotte was published, without her permission, accusing four prominent missionaries at Serampore College of expropriating property belonging to the Baptist Missionary Society.[3]

Joshua and Charlotte Rowe had three children. Rowe died in 1823. Charlotte remained in India until 1826 before returning to the United States with her three children.[4]

Later life[edit]

White taught English, music, and drawing in an academy at Lowndesboro, Alabama in the 1830s.[5]


  1. ^ Barber, Edwin Atlee Genealogical Record of the Atlee Family Philadelphia: Wm. F. Fell & Co, 1884, pp. 80-81
  2. ^ Anderson, Gerald H. Biographical Dictionary of Christian Missions Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdman's Publishing Co., 1991, p. 727; Proceedings of the Baptist Convention for Missionary Purposes, Philadelphia, 1814, pp. 65, 112
  3. ^ The Reformer, Vol. 4, April 2, 1823, pp. 73-79
  4. ^ Brackney, William H The A to Z of Baptists Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2009, p. 605; Missionary Herald, 1827, p. 293
  5. ^ Anderson, p. 727

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Press Herald
Mon, 04 May 2015 20:45:00 -0700

Jocelyn Moody was 4 for 4 with two runs scored and an RBI, while Pacquette and Charlotte White each had three hits for Biddeford. Brooke Davis hit a solo home run. NOBLE 6, BONNY EAGLE 1: Shaughnessey Gower allowed three hits, struck out eight and ...

TWC News

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Mon, 13 Apr 2015 11:21:45 -0700

CHARLOTTE -- White House officials say President Barack Obama will hold a town hall about working family issues Wednesday at ImaginOn. His focus at the town hall meeting Wednesday will be women and some of the economic issues weighing on female ...
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Mon, 27 Apr 2015 16:19:14 -0700

A press release from Westport police states the department responded to a hit-and-run crash at Route 88 and Charlotte White Road at 6:20 p.m. on April 18. The victim told police she was driving north on Route 88 when a Chevrolet Cavalier ran a red ...
Mon, 27 Apr 2015 13:36:34 -0700

The charges stem from a hit-and-run accident about 6:20 p.m. April 18 at Route 88 and Charlotte White Road, police said. The victim told police that she was traveling north on Route 88 when a Chevrolet Cavalier, heading west, ran a red light at ...
Press Herald
Mon, 27 Apr 2015 20:42:42 -0700

SANFORD — After falling behind in the top of the second inning, Sanford scored twice in the bottom of the inning on its way to a 2-1 win over Biddeford in a high school softball game Monday. Biddeford (1-1) took the lead on an RBI double by Charlotte ...

The Hedon Blog (blog)

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Tue, 05 May 2015 23:11:15 -0700

... models from year 11, there will be performances by the school Rock Challenge Team, (who gained second place in the annual competition at Bridlington Spa recently); staff band, The Lamms; a three-piece year 11 dance group and singer Charlotte White.

Fort Worth Star Telegram

Fort Worth Star Telegram
Wed, 22 Apr 2015 10:43:34 -0700

Just as our nation begins the warm-up to Election 2016, former White House communications director and current The View co-host Nicolle Wallace brings us Madam President, her third novel in a series starring Charlotte Kramer, the 45th president of the ...


Sat, 11 Apr 2015 16:57:56 -0700

Chicago reinstated LHP Eric Surkamp from the 15-day disabled list (upper back strain) and assigned him to Triple-A Charlotte. ... White Sox slugger Jose Abreu is batting just .176 with just one home run in five games but he's still finding a way to get ...

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